International Family Services
211 North Meridian Street
Newberg, Oregon 97132
Type: Private Agency
Based On All Reviews
Review by hollynt submitted on January, 29, 2008 at 08:21 PM
Pros: The only positive thing I can say is that we have our son.
Child's Age: 1y 8m
Start Date: Dec 2004
Completion Date: Nov 2006
Time Until Placement: 23 months
Type: Closed, International
Special Needs: Yes
Child from Uralsk, Kazakhstan
Cons: IFS was NOT honest with us. We would read about problems on internet chat groups and bring them to the attention of our agency and they would lie and say the info was not correct. We had a referral for a healthy baby boy in Russia. We paid all of our money upfront and paid the max amount of money because he was a healthy infant. We later lost that referral and had to switch countries. Kazakhstan turned into a nightmare as well. IFS had no idea how to complete the Kaz dossier correctly. The Kaz Embassy in Washington DC refused to approve our dossier because we were with an AMREX agency, so I was forced to figure out a way to get our dossier approved without the help of IFS! I was able to get it approved by going through the Kaz NY Consulate. Then 2 weeks before we were to travel to Kazakhstan we found out that AMREX (the facilitator that IFS used in Kaz and Russia had filed for bankruptcy). Our money was gone! After threating the owner of IFS with a lawsuit, she agreed to pay the reps in the region so that we could complete our adoption. Once we were in the region we were only shown SN children. We were told these were the only children available! Luckily we fell in love with our son the second we met him! He was 2 years old and has CP (not able to walk) and he had vision problems. While in the country we were asked to pay more money - we had no choice. We were in country for almost 7 weeks - which was not too bad. Once we were home we asked IFS to please refund some of our money because the child we brought home was SN and would require surgeries and medical care. The money we paid them 2 years prior was for a healthy infant and our son clearly did not fit into that category (according to the IFS fee graph in the 2004 contract, they charge different fees according to age and health), but IFS would not refund one penny. They told us to just be happy with our son. Which we are VERY happy with our son, but not happy with IFS! They put us and many other couples through H***! Clearly they are not in this business for the right reasons! There are plenty of agencies out there that are in it for the right reasons, so pick one of those agencies!
Reviews: IFS has some really nice employees working for them. I do not think these ladies mean to hurt the families - I think they honestly belive the lies that they are being fed. It is sad. The children that are waiting to be adopted are the ones being hurt the most.
Choose your agency VERY carefully!