If you are seriously considering adoption as a way to start or build a family, you may be under the impression that international adoptions just always take longer than domestic adoptions. While the process of adopting a child from another country can be an involved process, there are countries and situations where the international process may actually get you a child sooner than a domestic adoption.
The International Adoption Process
The international adoption process is essentially a four step process:
- The home study—The first thing you’ll need to do is complete a home study, which shouldn’t take more than six months, but can be done in as little as a month.
- Completing your dossier—Once your home study is done, you’ll need to put together all the documents required to adopt in the country you’ve chosen. This is a fairly straightforward process and typically takes no more than a couple months. Once the dossier is complete, it will need to be authenticated and translated, which can take another month or so.
- Processing your application—This is clearly the longest part of the process and varies wildly, based on the country. Some, such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Ukraine, will finish the process in less than six months. Most take one to two years, and China, which used to be a much faster process, now can take up to five years.
- Obtaining your child’s visa through USCIS—Once your application has been processed, you must prepare and submit your application for an orphan visa, which can take a week or can take three to four months.
If everything goes smoothly, you can complete an international adoption in less than 18 months, not much longer than it would take to conceive a child.
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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.
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