International Adoption

If you are planning to adopt a child from overseas, it’s really important to get advice at the early planning stages, so that you have a clear picture of what the international adoption process will entail, how long it’s likely to take and what will be expected of you. Going through an intercountry adoption can seem like a daunting prospect, but we are here to guide, help and support you throughout your journey.

What is International Adoption?

International adoption, also commonly referred to as ‘overseas adoption’ or ‘intercountry adoption’, refers to the process of adopting a child from another country. Usually, adopted children come from a care system or are eligible because their birth parents are not in a position to care for them.

The Process of Adopting a child Overseas

  1. Finding a country and provider; make sure you look at each country’s individual adoption laws and seek advice in that particular destination, as well as at home.
  2. The UK Home Study Assessment; this is where you’ll be allocated a social worker who will assess your ability to care for a child; including home visits, personal references, groups, background checks and more.
  3. Getting a certificate of eligibility; once approved as a prospective adopter, the Department for Education will review your documentation and give you a certificate of eligibility to adopt.
  4. The matching process; in this stage, you’ll be matched with potential children to adopt, this process differs greatly between countries, but you’ll almost always need to visit the child and engage with the agency from whom you are adopting.
  5. The legal stage; this final stage is where you apply for your adoption order either in your destination country, in the UK or in
    both (this will depend on whether you have engaged with the Hague Convention or not). This will require obtaining a British passport or entry clearance to the UK.

How can we help with your International Adoption?

From the early planning stages to helping you make your adoption application, Ellis Jones is on-hand to help. Please contact Nicola Scott/Suzi Denton to discuss

Here to help

Our specialist teams can provide full service legal advice and assistance, providing practical and cost-effective solutions.

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