Adoption Update

The most up-to-date adoption news


ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS FOR ADOPTIVE PARENTS:  Under Haitian law, at least one prospective adoptive parent must be 35 or older.  For married couples, one prospective adoptive parent may be under age 35, provided the couple has been married for 10 years and has no biological children.  Pursuant to the terms of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Haitian Government may decide to lower its existing age requirement.  Haitian law permits adoptions by single parents.  Adoptions by married couples require the consent of both spouses.  This restriction can be waived with permission from the President of Haiti.

While Presidential waivers of ineligibility are sometimes issued, they are difficult to obtain and require a lengthy period of time to process.  Prospective adoptive parents who do not fit the guidlines should consider not adopting in Haiti.

Note: U.S. immigration procedures still require the signature of both spouses on the I-600 form.  (See “U.S. Immigration Requirements” section below).

RESIDENCY REQUIREMENTS:   Haitian law does not require prospective adoptive parents to reside in Haiti, although Haitian courts and/or IBESR may require American prospective adoptive parents to travel to Haiti before the adoption is finalized.  The U.S. government does not require adoptive parents to travel to Haiti at any time during the adoption and immigrant visa procedures.

TIME FRAME: The adoption process in Haiti frequently requires as long as eighteen months, primarily because the legal process is complex.  Often adoption applications can take more than two years.  Prospective adoptive parents are advised to keep this timeframe in mind.  Once an adoption case has been approved by IBESR and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the process of obtaining an immigrant visa appointment at the Immigrant Visa Unit (Adoptions Unit) of the U.S. Embassy Consular Section usually takes approximately two weeks.  If at the time of the visa interview the adoption case is complete and the immigrant visa is issuable, the visa itself is typically available within two business days.

(All information taken from the U.S. Department of State website)

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