Thinking About Adopting Overseas? Here’s What You Should Know

Thinking About Adopting Overseas? Here’s What You Should Know


While it’s not the easiest thing to do, many parents decide to bring a child to the United States via adoption.  There are laws in the home country that may impact a couple’s private arrangement, so working with an adoption agency with international resources is probably the way to go in this situation.

Doing it yourself is too dangerous, and there’s too much at risk when a child’s developmental stability is considered.

In 2011, over 50,000 children were adopted through the United States foster care system.  This system allows children in the United States to be placed with adoptive families after getting to know them and testing out the living situation through foster care.

There were just under 10,000 children adopted into the United States from foreign countries in the same year.  While it was true for decades that Americans had an easier, perhaps less costly option in adopting a child from an external country, and while many biological parents of children in developing countries would readily allow their child to be adopted by a United States couple, there have been limits placed on the ability to “trade” children across international borders.

departmentseal2The United States Department of State has focused on women’s health, which includes the human rights of women and their children, and the desire of the government organization to provide fair and just representation to those inside and outside the US is admirable.

The average adoption process takes about one year when it’s initiated from inside the US Foster Care system.  The average international adoption takes anywhere between 79 days and two years, because international laws can vary so significantly.

In the US Foster Care system, most adoptive parents do not pay fees or other costs associated to the adoption.  However, international adoption can cost anywhere from nothing at all to approximately $65,000, depending on the home country’s laws.

Author: Martin LaVore

One thought on “Thinking About Adopting Overseas? Here’s What You Should Know

  1. Nursyiah

    Not all foster cehidrln are adoptable. The primary purpose of a foster home is to provide temporary care for a child when it is not possible for them to be with their primary family. The main goal is always family preservation. Before a child can even be made adoptable, the Child Welfare agency must petition the courts to remove parental rights from the birth parents and make the child a permanent ward of the state. In order to do this, there must be just cause. Often these parents will have abused the cehidrln either directly or indirectly (by using drugs or alcohol during pregnancy). The likelihood of your foster child having extreme emotional baggage is high, not to mention that doing substances such as drugs and alcohol while pregnant damages the central nervous system creating organic brain damage which can lead to things such as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.You should also be aware that once parental rights are removed, that doesn’t mean that the parents are out of the picture. They have the right to petition the courts to have their parental rights reinstated if they are able to get themselves in such a place that the courts believe they would no longer be a danger to their cehidrln. They may also STILL be entitled to parental visits with or without their rights intact. If reunification with birth parents is not possible, the agency must use the following pecking order to find a suitable home:1. Extended Family2. Community/Band (especially with Ethnic cehidrln)3. Foster Home4. General PublicYou should also note that in cases where the child is a different race than the foster parents, some agencies will not allow adoptions.Edit: To the person below. I am Canadian, and in Canada the Native agencies were given provision over their adoptions and with such rights, comes the right to deny adoptions to non-native families. It’s a sad fact around here because so many cehidrln are growing up in foster homes that would love to adopt them, but because of their race, they have been told they can’t.


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