International Adoptions – Dealing with Immigration Issues

How to Work Most Effectively with Prospective Birthparents

When you adopt a child from a foreign country, in addition to the legal issues specifically related to making the child a member of your family, you may also be required to “re-adopt” the child once you return to the United States. Whether or not you must generally depends on the type of visa that was issued for your child.

The IR-3 Visa

An IR-3 visa is issued when the adoption is completed in the child’s home country. It is based on a confirmation that the adoptive parent or parents had an opportunity to see the child in his or her native country before the adoption. If you obtained an IR-3 visa, you will not be required to re-adopt your child once you arrive in the states, but you can still choose to do so. State courts are not required to recognize foreign adoption decrees (though many do). Re-adoption may be necessary if you want to obtain a state-issued birth certificate in the child’s name.

The IR-4 Visa

If either or both parents do not have the opportunity to travel to see the child in his or her own country, an IR-4 visa will be issued. When your child enters the country on an IR-4 visa, it is mandatory that you re-adopt the child in the United States. Otherwise, the adoption will not be legally finalized.

Contact Our Office

To set up an appointment, call us in Haddonfield at 856-429-5005 or in Woodbury at 856-845-2555. We can also be reached in Philadelphia at 215-563-2150 or by e-mail. For clients with personal injury or workers’ compensation claims, we offer a free initial consultation, and will represent you on a contingency basis, only charging attorney fees if we recover compensation for you.

Our offices are open weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Weekend and evening appointments may be arranged upon request. We will also come to your home or the hospital, if necessary.

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