Wednesday, November 19, 2008

COMMONWEALTH RANTING

Much has been said about Commonwealth Adoptions International. The Arizona Attorney General has filed a complaint on this particular agency. Some of the employees of this agency have since been transferred to Gladney Adoption Services out of Tampa. In fact, opening the same office in Tampa as Commonwealth operated out of. I wonder if Gladney realizes who exactly they are working with. Do they realize how badly these folks hurt the adoptive parents. I do know that this agency did not give the prospective adoptive parents a choice in which agencies that they were being transferred to. Are you sweating it yet, Marina? I hope so. It should teach all of you that you can't live high on the hog at the expense of others.

Here is the current articles on Commonwealth Adoptions International:

Here is the link for this one:

The international adoption agency shut down earlier this year after it was denied the accreditation required by many countries to place their children with foreign families.
The Attorney General said in a news release that Commonwealth engaged in a pattern of misrepresentation and deceptive practices when it offered domestic and foreign adoption services to families.
The company entered contracts with families and claimed it would provide adoption services in exchange for fees. Instead, Commonwealth pooled the money, using cash paid by one set of parents to pay for other families' adoptions, the lawsuit says.
More than 20 families asked for refunds when Commonwealth failed to provide those services, but after going out of business the agency said the money had already been used for other families' adoptions, according to the attorney general.
Commonwealth had offices in Florida, Pennsylvania and Texas, as well as in Tucson at 1585 E. River Road.
The agency learned in July that it had been denied accreditation required by the Hague Convention — a treaty that governs international adoption, signed by the United States and nearly 75 other countries. The aim of the treaty, which went into effect April 1, is to prevent the illegal trafficking of children and to ensure that international adoption is in the best interest of the child.
Consumers who feel they were defrauded by Commonwealth should contact the Arizona Attorney General's Office Consumer Information and Complaint division in Tucson at 628-6504, in Phoenix at 602-542-5763 or toll-free outside of Maricopa or Pima County at 800-352-8431.


Here is another one with the story below:

The state accused a Tucson-based international adoption agency of consumer fraud Tuesday, claiming in a lawsuit the company failed to refund nearly $215,000 to adopting families.
Commonwealth Adoptions International Inc. shut down earlier this year after it was denied the accreditation required by many countries to place children with foreign families.
Families who had already begun the adoption process, some of whom paid thousands of dollars, were denied repayment, documents filed in Pima County Superior Court show.
Commonwealth President Marina Mayhew, Director of Operations Dawn Hill and board members Jim Sellers, James Mayhew, Dan Bish and William Hundelang are each named in the lawsuit.
Mayhew said in an e-mail that Commonwealth was surprised by the accusation and that the company has been working with families so they wouldn't be affected by the closure.
According to the complaint filed by Attorney General Terry Goddard, Commonwealth engaged in a pattern of misrepresentation and deceptive practices when it offered domestic and foreign adoption services to families.
The company entered contracts with families and claimed it would provide adoption services in exchange for fees. Instead, Commonwealth pooled the money, using cash paid by one set of parents to pay for other families' adoptions, the lawsuit says.
More than 20 families asked for refunds when Commonwealth failed to provide those services, but after going out of business the agency said the money had already been used for other families' adoptions, according to the attorney general.
In the e-mail, Mayhew said she hadn't seen the complaint.
The agency learned in July that it had been denied accreditation required by the Hague Convention — a treaty that governs international adoptions, signed by the United States and nearly 75 other countries. The aim of the treaty, which went into effect April 1, is to prevent the illegal trafficking of children and to ensure that international adoption is in the best interest of the child.
"We have been working on transitioning families to other adoption professionals since that time," Mayhew said. "At present, out of 340 families in process at the time of (the) closing announcement, the overwhelming majority have been transferred to other adoption agencies without interruption or having to pay additional fees."
The agency has sought consultation from a bankruptcy attorney but has postponed filing for Chapter 7 liquidation bankruptcy, Mayhew said. The company put off filing so its volunteer staffers could continue transitioning families to other agencies, she said. Commonwealth had been in business for 15 years and successfully processed more than 2,000 adoptions, Mayhew said.
Commonwealth had offices in Florida, Pennsylvania and Texas, as well as in Tucson at 1585 E. River Road.

5 comments:

GLD said...

Hi! We are a previous CAI family . We were in the midst of our wait for referral when Commonwealth closed. I can remember how heart wrenching it was to receive the news. We felt so close but yet far away. We empathize for any family that was not able to continue their adoption process. However,we feel compelled to share with you because we luckily were a family that transitioned to Gladney.
We were not strong armed or forced to go with Gladney. Ironically enough when we found out about Commonwealth's closing we quickly started researching other agencies esp. Hague accrediated ones. Gladney was at the top of our list.
Yes, the closing of Commonwealth is tragic. We truly can not comment on the aspects regarding money,employees, refunds ,law suits , etc. But in regards to Gladney ,our transition to Gladney has been a prayer answered. A definite silver lining in a dark cloud. Gladney has been nothing but professional and compassionate. They walked us through all the uncertanity. We are excited again because we know that we will have our forever family.
Thanks for listening,
Gary & Leslie

Anonymous said...

Someone recently directed me to your site, as they were aware that I was previously a client of Commonwealth Adoptions International (CAI) and had transferred to Gladney Center For Adoptions. As a CAI client, I was nothing but pleased with how they handled our case and assisted us through the adoption process. It was unfortunate and sad that CAI lost accreditation and shut down. However, I was appreciative of their assistance in transferring us to another agency and they did give us the alternative to seek other solutions. While the transition was anxiety-provoking, my experience was positive overall. Gladney was unbelievably helpful in the transition process as well. They had lots of files to sort through etc. and did so rather efficiently. It is also great that Raul was able to transition to Gladney, given his expertise with Colombian adoptions.

KITE KAMP GIRL said...

You may have had a good experience but please do not discount the hundreds of others that did not. These will be the last two comments who positively rave about this agency allowed.

I wonder seriously where the money that most of these adoptive families gave to them has gone. I wonder. That is close to eight million dollars at a minimum. That is a lot of money to be conned out of.

Do you really think Gladney is all that great? Let me tell ya something. They do not care about you once the deal is done. What happens when your child decides to search years down the road? Hopefully thanks to me and others like me, they won't have to hassle with the agency. Hopefully they will get their original birth certificate. Hopefully they won't have the horrors I have faced. Hopefully they won't be lied to like I have been.

Terri said...

This is for Anonymous!Did you leave out your name because of your callous actions? Rubbing salt in the wounds of these poor victims is not exactly a nice thing to do! By what you have said, I'm sure you're either an employee or family member of Gladney OR Commonwealth! If your file was really transferred you had a hell of a lot more money to pay that Commonwealth probably screwed you out of! If you had any type of heart, you would HELP these people that have been burned, not sing the praises of the thieves! Well you may not be the brightest bulb in the box but at least the Attorney General knows the truth!

Anonymous said...

Those that were not in the Columbia Program were not so lucky. We have had to repay fees that we had already paid CAII. What's professional about that. CAII should have paid those fees on our behalf. I hope that those in the Columbia program are not surprised later on with all of the sudden mysterious fees that are needed to complete their adoptions. At the end of the day we all share a common goal to become families but CAII has put us through the ringer.