Attachment is characterized by specific behaviors in children, such as seeking proximity to the attachment figure for comfort, safety and security and to have basic needs met. These behaviors may be clinically observed and measured.
The terms "attachment" and "bonding" are often confused. Attachment refers to a child's emotional connection to caregivers. Bonding refers to the caregivers' feelings and connection to the child. Both are relevant under 63.2-1205, but attachment is of primary concern as it relates more directly to the best interests of the child. It addresses crucial relationships from the point of view of the child's needs and experiences.
There is good news for families pursuing adoption. The final version of the tax reform bill before Congress has preserved the adoption tax credit!