A Guide to Writing an Effective Adoption Reference

An adoption reference letter is one of the vital requirements when it comes to home study documentation for adoption.

The adoption agency might request several documents during the home study process. This may include birth certificates, marriage licenses, financial forms, and reference letters.

Prospective adoptive parents might be required to submit up to three to five reference letters, depending on the state’s law. Writing a letter of reference for adoption is quite challenging, and it’ll help to get some guidance. 

An adoption reference letter should talk about the prospective parents’ positive qualities, like their commitment and possible desire to be parents to a child. This guide will teach you how to write the perfect adoption reference letter.

Why Is a Letter of Reference for Adoption Necessary?

An adoption reference letter gives the adoption agency information about the prospective adoptive parents or couple. The agency can decide whether the person or couple will make a good parent through the testimony of a third party.

The reference letter affirms the adoptive parents’ moral character and capacity to be good parents. If you need to write such a letter for someone, you must be able to give the agency a favorable impression of the individual.

Who Can Write a Reference Letter for Adoption?

woman holding spirit of adoption blocks
Photo by Annika Marek-Barta on Unsplash

Adoption reference letters cannot come from family members but can be written by individuals who know the prospective adoptive parents well enough. Some of these people include:

  • Neighbors
  • Church members
  • Pastor or clergy
  • Coworkers who you have known for at least five years. 
  • Friends.

Writing a Letter of Reference for Adoption

If your friend, or neighbor has requested that you write a reference letter for their adoption process, here are some crucial things to include: 

1. Provide Your Correct Details

Include your name, residence, city, state, and zip code in the adoption reference letter.

Follow the proper business letter format when writing this letter. You should also include your phone number and email address, so the agency can contact you if necessary.

2. State the Date

Include the complete date when you write the letter. This helps indicate that the letter was given after the adoption agency requested it.

3. Display Your Connection to the Couple

Describe your relationship with the adoptive parents, including how you know them. Write this in the initial paragraph of the letter.

Additionally, emphasize how long you’ve known the individuals. You may describe how and when you met them in detail. These specifics help in demonstrating your familiarity with the adoptive parents.

4. Demonstrate the Strengths and Character of the Adoptive Parents

Based on your knowledge about them, describe the couple’s strengths and character qualities. You can write about the qualities you admire most about the person or couple. These specifics help to highlight the adoptive parents’ positive traits. 

5. Mention Qualities That Make the Couple Suitable for Adoption

Provide a list of qualities ideal for parenting a child, such as love, integrity, and compassion, that you find in the person or couple.

Provide only attributes you have personally witnessed. Describe how these qualities will help the person or couple be good parents.

6. Make a Statement About the Couple’s Relationship.

Discuss any observations you have made regarding the adoptive parents’ marriage or connection. You may describe how the couple gets along by noting their compassion. 

7. Describe Their Parenting Abilities and Experience

You should write in the letter if the adoptive parents have ever taken care of your children or babysat them. Describe a talent you saw that might help them take care of a child.

This may include their ability to get things done on time or prepare healthy meals. Such a statement will give the agency an idea that the couple can maintain a stable lifestyle for the child.

8. Give Your Opinion

Express your opinion of the couple’s or person’s suitability for adopting and raising a kid. Ensure your recommendation is sincere because the adoption agency depends on it to make a decision.

Be genuine. Your adoption reference letter should help the agency find a good home for the child, not make the adoptive parent appear good. 

9. Include Your Signature

End your letter with phrases like “Kind Regards” or “Sincerely.” Then you add your name. Finally, append your Signature to the letter.

Adoption Reference Letter Samples

Example: Adoption Reference Letter for a Friend

[Your address]

Dear [Adoption agency],

I am writing to recommend my good friends John and Jane as adoptive parents. They are kind, loving people who I know will provide a wonderful home for a child. I can’t think of anyone more deserving or better suited to be parents.

John and Jane have been together for many years and have always wanted to start a family. They have talked about adoption for a long time, and they would make excellent parents. They are patient, caring, and generous people who would give everything to their children.

I hope you will consider them as adoptive parents. In case you have any questions, please contact me at [contact information]. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Kind regards,


[Your name]

Example 2

[Your address]

Dear [Adoption agency]

I recommend my good friends Joe and Jill as adoptive parents. They are both loving individuals who have always wanted to start a family. I have known them for 5 years and can attest to their character. They would make wonderful parents and provide a loving home for any child.

Kindly consider them as potential adoptive parents. Please contact me at [contact information] if you have further questions.



[Your Name] 

Example 3: Adoption Reference Letter From Pastor or Church Member

[Your address]

Dear [Adoption agency],

This letter is to recommend Joe and Jane Smith as adoptive parents. I have known them for many years through our church, where they are both active members. They are kind, caring people who would provide a loving home for any child.

They would make excellent adoptive parents and provide a stable and loving home for the child. I am confident they would treat any child with compassion and care. And do everything to ensure that the child has a happy and healthy life.

I highly recommend them, as I have witnessed their compassion and love for each other and others around them, especially children. 



[Your Name]

Example 4: Adoption Reference Letter for a Neighbor

[Your address]

Dear Child Adoption Agency,

I am writing to recommend my next-door neighbors, the Smiths, as adoptive parents. I have known them for over ten years, and they are some of the kindest, most loving people I know. They would make amazing parents and provide a loving home for any child.

The Smiths have always been supportive and friendly neighbors. They are always quick to lend a helping hand, whether watching our kids when we need a babysitter or picking up our mail. They are also active in the community, volunteering at the local food bank and mentoring children.

I can’t imagine better parents for a child than the Smiths. They have so much love to give and would provide a stable, nurturing home for any child lucky enough to be placed with them. I hope you will give serious consideration to their application.



[Your Name]


Writing a letter of reference for adoptioncan be challenging, but not impossible. You should know that you play a significant role in someone’s life when they ask you to write a reference letter for them. The process of adopting a kid is drawn out and a significant experience, so a reference letter should be taken seriously.

If you are uncomfortable providing a reference letter, tell the truth rather than mess up the adoption process for the individual.

Use the Hey INK tool to quickly generate the perfect letter of reference for adoption!

Abir is a data analyst and researcher. Among her interests are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. As a humanitarian and educator, she actively supports women in tech and promotes diversity.

Writing a Character Reference Letter: an Effective Guide

Writing a reference letter for someone’s character can be a huge responsibility.  Vouching for a person’s character is more than just…

December 15, 2022

A Guide to Writing an Effective Adoption Reference

An adoption reference letter is one of the vital requirements when it comes to home study documentation for adoption. The…

December 15, 2022

Essential Tips for Writing Better Visa Reference Letters

One of the most challenging aspects of global travel process is getting a well-written visa reference letter. You must be…

December 15, 2022

Guide on Writing Standard Textbook References

Academic writing draws on the knowledge and experience of multiple authors, not just one. It incorporates concepts and analysis from…

December 15, 2022

A Guide to Writing an Effective Employee Reference

When an employee leaves your company, providing them with a reference letter might help them land their next job. A…

December 15, 2022

The Key to Effective College Recommendation Letters

Writing a college reference letter is a prime example of how words have the power to affect someone’s life. Recommendation letters…

December 15, 2022