International, or intercountry adoption, refers to the adoption of children from a country abroad of the United States. International adoption is a choice made by couples who want to bring a child into their family from another country. Sometimes this decision is informed by a philanthropic drive to provide a loving, financially stable home for a child from a developing country or those affect by a natural disasters or war that leave many children without parents. Other times, adopters may feel adoption laws in another country are more lenient for nontraditional adopters. Most foreign countries also have older age limits for adoption than agencies in the U.S.
It's often said that anyone cleared for adoption will have no trouble with an international placement, particularly from countries, like China, that have placed over 64,000 children in adoptive American households since 1999. The international adoption placement also happens faster than a domestic placement, making it a popular decision for adopters who do not want to wait two years for an older child adoption to finalize.
Nearly all international adoptions are of children under the age of 5, meaning that most of the children are still young enough to have experienced traumatic events but are also able to adapt to a new lifestyle and culture. If a couple is placed with a child of a different ethnic background or racial appearance, the adoption will also be considered a transracial adoption, which may require a few extra culturally sensitive steps in the adoption process. Countries in Africa, for example, may require adopters to spend a certain amount of time in the child's country of origin, getting to know the local community, activities, religious practices and cuisine.
Other practices unique to international adoption include a philanthropic donation to the child's orphanage, institution or agency. Chinese placements may also include a photo of a second child that an agency hopes to place in tandem.
Although most international adoptees will not know their birth parents and searching for them can be difficult after adulthood, international adoptees will still question their cultural origins and if they are of a different racial background may need extra support while maturing in a transracial family.
International adoption requires a lot of paperwork, filing costs for which averages around $1,000. Other expenses adopters can expect include travel (airfare, lodging and food), a home study, a dossier and translator service fees and a donation for the child's orphanage of origin.
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Immigration And Naturalization Service
World Health Organization
Dossier To China
New, Seeking Advice and Agency Tips
March 7, 2014, 6:45 am
Hi there! My husband and I are starting to look into international adoption and are considering China or possibly Korea. Wondering if anyone has advice or experience to offer on either country. In my research I've discovered that to adopt from China we would have to be open to a special needs...I or we my husband and I feel your situation due to age is not Agency Related,
February 23, 2014, 8:26 am
I or we my husband and I feeI that your situation due to age is not Agency Related. Your situation due to age is US Immigrations Related. Which is most likely what most Agencies ' stem ' their Adoption policies from. A lot is also income based. Realistically, for everyone. Immigration...
No experience Adopting from South Africa, but have been In Country??
February 23, 2014, 9:01 pm
No experience Adopting from South Africa, but have been In Country?? What are your expectations with International Adoption please?? China is currently processing Dossiers dated fall of 2006. Central America is saying . " 2-8 years." I saw a posting earlier. " That South Africa's...We have Adopted 13 with Special Needs and we love being a Family Tons!!
March 7, 2014, 2:06 pm
We have Adopted 13 with Special Needs, and we love being a Family Tons!! What is the Special Need or Needs please? Do you feel that your Family can take this on?? Have you had an International Adoption Pediatrician or Specialist review his file? Most Special Needs that are major...
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