Adoption Reimbursement

Rensselaer will reimburse any regular full-time employee for adoption-related expenses — up to $1,500 and which were incurred on or after the first day of the fourth month from the employee’s date of hire for the adoption of a child under the age of 16. Examples of adoption-related expenses include travel to pick up the child and any costs incurred to the birth mother.

Employees who wish to be reimbursed must submit their documented adoption expenses to the Division of Human Resources with a copy of the receipt and the cost identified on the receipt.

A Rensselaer employee must be classified with regular, full-time status to be eligible to participate in the Rensselaer Adoption Assistance Program. Fixed-term employees are not eligible for this benefit.

Rensselaer employees must complete 90 days of continuous service before becoming eligible for this benefit. The 90 days of service will begin at the time an employee is classified as having regular, full-time status.

Employees must have the required employee classification at the time the adoption expense is incurred, when the adoptive child is placed with them for adoption, and when they are granted legal custody.

To be considered eligible for adoption assistance, the individual being adopted must be an unrelated minor under the age of 16. The adoptive child may not be a relative or stepchild of the employee if either of the child’s biological parent(s) are living, nor may the adoptive child be the child of the employee's spouse or domestic partner.

The adoption assistance program provides financial assistance and reimbursement for the following specific adoption-related expenses:

  • Licensed private or public adoption agency fees, including fees for placement and parental counseling
  • Legal costs, including attorney’s fees and court costs
  • Charges for transportation to obtain physical custody of the adoptive child.  Such expenses include meals and lodging, and any reasonable and customary travel expenses — for both the adoptive parents and the adoptive child — which are directly associated to the adoption process.
  • Immigration, child's immunization, and translation fees
  • Temporary foster care expenses before placement

Eligible expenses will be covered up to a maximum of $1,500 per adopted child. The lifetime maximum amount to be reimbursed is $4,500.

  • Expenses that violate state and federal law
  • Expenses for carrying out any surrogate parenting arrangement
  • Donations
  • Expenses paid using funds received from any federal, state, or local program
  • Costs associated with legal guardianship

Employees must notify Rensselaer’s Human Resources Office in writing within 30 days of when the adoption proceeding has commenced.

When the adoption is final, employees must submit the Rensselaer Adoption Assistance Program Reimbursement Application Form with their itemized bills, proof of payment, and a certified copy of the judicial order of adoption to the office of Human Resources at the following address:

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Division of Human Resources
21 Union Street
Troy, NY 12180

Human Resources may request additional documentation regarding the employee’s itemized bills.

Employees must submit their written requests for reimbursement within 30 days after the adoption is final. Financial assistance reimbursement will be made only after the adoption is finalized in court and the decree and birth certificate is awarded to the employee seeking reimbursement. Reimbursements will be made directly to the employee requesting the reimbursement(s) and adjusted into the employee’s paycheck.

Note that these financial reimbursements will be considered taxable income, and as such will be subject to tax withholdings at the time of payment. Adoption assistance benefits are subject to federal and state income tax, any relevant city wage taxes, and FICA withholdings.

Employees who want to cover an adopted child under Rensselaer’s medical and or dental plan(s) must do so within 30 days of obtaining legal custody of the child. A certified copy of the judicial order of adoption will be required at the time the employee requests to add the adoptive child to any benefit plan.

Employees who wish to ask for exceptions to this policy must submit their requests in writing to:

Louis A. Padula
Director of Benefits, Retirement & HRIS
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Human Resources Division
21 Union Street, 2nd Floor
Troy, NY 12180


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