Orphan is a dated term but one that has endured in the legal realm and international adoption process. It's sometimes thought to have a negative connotation due to popular culture references as well as photographs of malnourished and unclean children in orphanages overseas. In some ways, this image may be true. However, the term is generally palatable albeit a rough truth and a huge requirement of the adoption process, for obvious reasons.
Before a child can be adopted from a country abroad, he or she must be of legal orphan status by U.S. and his or her home country's definition. In the United States, an orphan is defined as a child whose birth parents are dead or incapacitated. These children will also need to have no other relatives capable or willing to raise them. Orphans can also be a child whose birth parents had their parental rights legally terminated, voluntarily or involuntarily. This is often the case internationally, and orphanages should have a court-issued certificate of abandonment that an adoptive couple will need as proof during the finalization process.
It's relatively common for countries like China to have their adoptable children in orphanages, while Korea is known for its foster care system. When adopting from an orphanage, it may be expected for an adopter to donate thousands of dollars to the institution for staff pay and goods for the children. Other options are to bring helpful gifts for the remaining children in the orphanage, such as dental and hygiene supplies. These are looked upon as good faith for the institution that raised the adopted child. Some agencies may even try to place multiple children with an adoptive couple or individual for a "discount."
When adopting an child internationally, adoptive parents will need to bring a notarized orphan petition form, called an I-600, so the child, or children, can receive visas, which cost several hundred dollars. Depending on whether the child's country allows adoptions to be finalized in their country or not will affect the kind of visa he or she is eligible for as well as the kind of follow-up adoption processes that will need to be done upon returning to the United States. If an adoption is finalized in a child's country of origin, then he or she will be considered a U.S. citizen upon arrival to America.
Category: International Adoption
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I am a Christian and this is my take
February 1, 2014, 6:26 pm
First of all, you have to consider the audience. This material is obviously published by Christians for Christians encouraging orphan care. I don't believe it's trying to guilt a current foster parent into anything. I believe Focus on the Family are advocates of taking action. They are trying...Taking in an orphan child
January 11, 2014, 2:49 pm
Greetings! I have a unique situation. I want to take in this 16 year old boy who has worked for me for about 7 months. I have gotten to know him very well during this time even outside of work. He is an orphan being raised by his older step brother. Initially he was being raised by his step father...
Adult Adoptees from fostercare
January 21, 2014, 6:02 am
I am looking to find other adult adoptees who were adopted from foster care over the age of 8. I seem to be unable to find them on the internet. Every other group seems well represented. I am told I am in the smallest percentage of the adoptee population (but isn't it my group that necessitated...Colombian Adoption from Texas
February 17, 2014, 8:13 pm
My husband and I recently adopted two teen girls from Colombia. We also, along with my brother, operate a non-profit orphan ministry. We have partnered with Gladney, an adoption agency in Ft. Worth, Texas to have a trip this summer for prospective parents interested in adoption from Colombia. If...
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