Beacon House Adoption Services Inc
DO NOT USE IF YOU WANT CLEAR COMMUNICATION
On Friday we received an email from the agency suspending our contract because of the review I wrote on bestcompany.com I stand by my review. They claim that, “Your accusations and public statements have been less than truthful “If you ask questions about what YOUR money is going for they have the right to terminate your contract” – that is a patently untrue statement and not at all what our contract says. We itemize our accountings in order to provide that exact information to adoptive parents. Every member of the staff has treated you with respect during your entire process, and what you did was unreasonable.
Now keep in mind they have 180 days to get their accounting in order prior to having to send the itemized to you. What you do get at match is this
Contract fee already paid (2,500.00)
Now how are we supposed to know what we are paying for? Here is what a section of the addendum states—word for word that we did NOT sign.
We have added Section 2.3 A(3), which makes it incumbent upon you, as adoptive parents to advise us if you have any objections to any line item on the estimate of costs at the time of match with a birth mother. Since Beacon House estimates include any legally permitted costs, expenses and /or fees for each placement, it is imperative that we know if you have objections to payment of a specified item, for whatever your reason. Failure to advise us of any objection at the time the estimate is received will result in the forfeiture of that right later, after placement or disruption. Further, since we do pay legally permitted costs, expenses and fees, the agency has the RIGHT TO TERMINATE YOUR CONTRACT WITH US IN THE EVENT THAT YOU EXPRESS OBJECTIONS TO CERTAIN LINE ITEMS.
Now that you can see what we have seen you can make your own informed decision. This review is not because we had a disrupted placement. We planned on making this review no matter of our outcome. We totally understand a woman’s rights to parent and would NEVER object to her choice. Our issue has been with the way WE have been treated.
In the email it states that they were constantly updating us on the situation following the disruption…okay baby was born Dec 20th...we were not notified of this until Dec 23rd...After I sent several text and emails. That was the only conversation we had with the agency until 1/4/16 and once again I contacted them to find out what was going on. We received 4 more emails in Jan—I initiated all of them. In Feb the sent us an email about financials which we needed for taxes.
Do your own research, but pick an agency that if you do have a disruption that the money you paid minus mother’s expenses gets rolled into another match. Make sure before you sign you have that in writing. We made that mistake because they word it as any unused funds in escrow account. Be careful. We are not out to hurt anyone…we just want potential adoptive parents to be aware of what we went through because it is overwhelming and emotions are high. Good luck
Total disaster, do NOT use
My husband and I opted to use Beacon House for our domestic adoption because how wonderful Linda Partain (no longer with Beacon House) was on the international side of things. Unfortunately, our experience with the domestic side of Beacon House could not have been more frustrating, unprofessional, inconsiderate, and borders on fraud. Twice we were given referrals for birth mothers who we were told were "squeaky clean, no red flags" and both times turned out to be drug addicts, liars, and the second one was simultaneously taking money from another couple through another agency. With the first match, the information we were receiving from Beacon House was just plain wrong, for example, we were told that everything was fine, that the agent had been grocery shopping with the birth mother on a specific day when the birth mother in fact had been in jail for over a week at that point for drug distribution. Anne Hughes, the head of the Beacon House, is unfeeling, uncaring, and doesn't have her finger on the pulse of what is actually happening with the birth mothers. We had specifically put on our non-negotiables list that we are not interested in a baby who has a parent with either schizophrenia and/or bipolar and this birth father in fact was hospitalized in a psych unit for schizophrenic behaviors. Not only does the birth mother use cocaine but she also has had an addiction to painkillers for 8 years!!!!!! How does the agency not know this? It is their job, in fact we had pain them thousands of dollars, to be our advocate and our voice and to check out these birth mothers on an ongoing basis, not just initially but all the way through. We are especially disappointed because after the first failed adoption with Beacon House we thought they would go out of their way to screen the birth mothers a bit better the second go round and it actually turned out to be even worse the second time. They broke our trust, kept our $20,000 and then told me to "go read my contract". As a pediatrician and someone who has dedicated her life to the care of child, I implore you to choose another agency. I would trust the devil himself to find me a child before I would give another dime to Beacon House. The ONLY good thing about this agency was Linda and when they lost her and shut down their international program, they should have closed entirely.
Agreed - unresponsive - domestic
We'd go weeks or longer before hearing back from this agency. A couple times we'd call and the lady wouldn't even know who we were, and this was months down the road and after we'd completed the homestudy and had been in the waiting process.
No response to emails
Ms. Margie is great to work with and the sweetest lady. However, the BH staff are horrible at responding to e-mails, phone calls, and keeping you updated. When we worked with them we would go weeks with no response to e-mails or response to phone calls. It was unacceptable.
Great experience with Domestic
We adopted our daughter through Beacon House and the experience was great. Things went smoothly, there were no surprises, and everything was handled professionally. I would not hesitate to recommend them.
Happy this Agency is working Again
Good experience with our adoption on the US and Russian Side. They took a very bad situation we were in with a defunct agency and helped us bring our child home. We will always be grateful.
Beacon House = AMREX
Beacon House allowed so many agencies umbrella (use their Russian accreditation). Beacon House required everyone to sign THEIR contracts stating they were Beacon House clients. If you were so lucky to get on your first trip to Russia, you were a client of Beacon House-no one in Russia knew who AMREX or Genesis or any of the other agencies were-only that you were a Beacon House client. They even went so far as before Genesis was closing their door-took out all of their contracts and paperwork out of client files.
They left many of the THEIR clients without returned phone calls or hope. And there are many more than just a handfull of "burned" ex-Beacon House clients out here on the net trying to warn of the dangers of using this agency.
First Hand Experience
Let me tell you first hand what happened to my family. We did contract with Genesis, whose selling motive at the time was "Believe." We even have a nice little CD that will rip your heart out, because it is what potential adoptive parents dream about everynight anyway - and that is their forever child - whoever made the CD did an excellent job. However, our adoption was not handled in an excellent way. When I was researching agencies, I did not find much about Genesis. Had no idea who Amrex was and never heard of Beacon House. We had the sweetest little social worker named Beth and we trusted her implicitly. She told us to stay out of chat rooms and off the internet because it could hurt our adoption. Guess what, we did what she said. Because, surely people who were so concerned about orphaned children wouldn't lie, would they????
After we decided to travel blind because no referrals were coming through the system, we paid our remaining fees (which at this time totaled $50k). Beth and Lauren even encouraged us that this was definitely the way to go to get our children. Then, Beth called back and said there was one more form we needed to sign. We said sure. What we received was an adoption contract with Beacon House stamped all over it. Beth's explanation, "oh, this is the agency Russia recognizes so everything you have has Beacon House stamped on it. Genesis' name is not anywhere except on your home study."
Okay, we are very trusting and stupid people and we went with it. We signed the iron clad contract. I must say that whatever lawyer Beacon uses is very crafty with her words. She knows the type of contract to write that has you bound in all sense of the word... I've seen it on the net somewhere recemtly....
Then, we were waiting and waiting and waiting with a promise from Beth everyday that we would soon be traveling.
Genesis closes their doors, Amrex is gone, 8.8 million dollars at Amrex is missing and guess who is penniless and childless - yep - my family - two people who poured their life savings into this adoption, and many other couples.
Then I have a conversation with someone at Beacon House named Ann. She promises to help us - she is familiar with our file. She knows all about us. We are paper-ready to go! All documents are in order! We even told her that if she could help us go forward and not have to start over, our family would lend us the money because we knew that our money given to Genesis was gone. She promises to help. She tells us that our dossier is currently in a region. Even tells me she is coming to the Genesis office to meet with the director at the time, Lindsay.
Talked with Lindsay after the meeting with Ann. She informs me that Ann goes through every families file and removes any documentation with the name Beacon House on it. Contracts were taken - Emails were removed - Anything with Beacon House. Never heard from Ann again. She wouldn't answer my emails nor return my phone calls.
2 weeks pass and I receive a FedEx box in the mail. Guess what is in it? Our entire file from the adoption.. including interoffice emails, etc. Nothing with Beacon House is in it. Not even the Beacon House contract. Every document that apostilled, the apostilles, the homestudy, everything... our entire DOSSIER in a nice, big box. It had never left the country.
So... before you start saying that BH did the only thing they could do at the time because they had only received $1000 of the money we gave Genesis and before you say that we were only repeating what was posted somewhere else, you better get your facts straight. I have lived this hellish nightmare. I have sat at the Federal courthouse in Atlanta across the table from Sergey. I have watched document after document appear that would appear to be damning evidence about the morals and scruples of many adoption agencies, including this one.
Like, a business card brought back from Russia with Val'
This site is a place for adoptive parents to REVIEW agencies they have actually worked with. From what I can tell, this "review" is based solely on hearsay and internet "gab", rather than personal knowledge. Perhaps Beacon House did not use good judgment at one time, but there are many families who have actually brought children home from Russia and who, but for this agency (BH), would have been left stranded. Perhaps it would be better to hear from them than the ones that sit in judgment and post inaccurate information, who evidently have nothing better to do with their time than to defame and accuse without ascertaining the facts. What a world we live in, where people are free to disparage without foundation...
Beautiful baby girl home!
Our dreams came true with Beacon House! We have a healthy beautiful baby girl and our adoption went very smoothly.