Each year, thousands of U.S. Citizens adopt children from overseas. This is known as an intercountry adoption.
Adopting a child from another country is often a complicated journey. We will define the process and provide information to help you make informed decisions for you and your family.
USCIS is Responsible For:
- Determining the eligibility and suitability of the Prospective Adoptive Parents (Individuals) looking to adopt.
- Determining the eligibility of the child to immigrate to the United States.
Which Process is For You?
There are three processes for adopting a child internationally.
Two separate processes apply only to children adopted by U.S. citizens. Depending on what country you choose to adopt from will determine which process you will adopt by.
- Orphan (Non-Hague)
Another process applies to a U.S. citizen or Permanent Resident who may petition for his/her adoptive child through an Immediate Relative Petition.
Before you start
We encourage you to familiarize yourself with each adoption process, as there are important differences. An adoption agency will be able to help you arrange an adoption placement, but cannot represent you before USCIS or advise you on the legal aspects of your child’s immigration. If you want representation with adoption proceedings, you may want to consider obtaining an attorney.
The intercountry adoption process is governed by three different sets of laws:
- U.S. federal law
- The laws of the child’s country of birth.
- The laws of where you reside (U.S. state/territory or foreign country).
There are three different processes to immigrate your adopted child.
- Hague Adoptions
- Orphan Adoptions (Non-Hague)
- Immigrating Other Adopted Children
Home studies are very important to the intercountry adoption process. See the “Home Study Information” link on the left to learn:
- What is a home study?
- Who can conduct a home study?
- What are the home study requirements?
Before Your Child Immigrates to the United States
If the child you adopted or intend to adopt in the United States is residing abroad, the child will need an immigrant visa to enter the United States. Visas are issued by the U.S. Department of State (DOS) at the Embassy or Consulate in the foreign country where your child resides.
The type of visa your child is issued will determine what steps you will need to take for the child to acquire U.S. citizenship.
If your adopted child is already in the United States, see the “Other Adoption Related Immigration” link under “Immigration Through Adoption” on the left.
Visa types for Hague Adoptions
- IH-3 visa: Issued for children with full and final adoptions from a Hague Convention country.
- IH-4 visa: Issued when a child is coming to the United States from a Hague Convention country to be adopted.
Visa types for Orphan (Non-Hague) Adoptions
- IR-3 visa: Issued when a full and final adoption is completed abroad.
- Requires that the parent(s) physically see the child prior to or during the adoption proceedings.
- IR-4 visa: Issued to a child that…
- is coming to the United States to be adopted.
- was adopted abroad by only one parent (if married).
- was not seen by the parent(s) prior to or during the adoption.
Visa types for Other Adopted Children
- IR-2 visa: Issued to a child…
- adopted by a citizen if the child immigrates to the U.S. while unmarried and before his or her 21st birthday.
- after the child’s 21st birthday, if he or she is treated under the Child Status Protection Act as if he or she were still under 21).
For more information on the Child Citizenship Act see the “Child Citizenship Act Information” link to the right.
Children with IR-3 and IH-3 visas automatically acquire citizenship if:
- they enter the United States prior to their 18th birthday.
- they are under 18 years old, they are automatically U.S. citizens upon admission to the United States.
- they reside in the United States with their parents (U.S. government or military personnel assigned overseas may qualify as residing in the United States)
For IR-3 and IH-3 cases, we will automatically send your child’s Certificate of Citizenship to your U.S. address without requiring additional forms or fees.
Children with IR-4 and IH-4 visas:
- do not acquire automatic citizenship upon entry to the U.S., but instead become permanent residents.
- will automatically receive a permanent resident card (green card).
- will automatically acquire citizenship on the date of their adoption in United States, if the adoption occurs before the child’s 18th birthday.
Children with IR-2 visas that are:
- under 18 automatically acquire U.S. citizenship upon entry to the United States if they reside in the United States with their parents (U.S. government or military personnel residing overseas may qualify as residing in the U.S.)
- over 18 become permanent residents and receive a green card.
Children with IR-2 visas who did not automatically acquire U.S. citizenship can apply for naturalization when eligible.
Immigration through Adoption
Immigration through adoption, or “Intercountry adoption,” refers to the adoption of a child born in one country by an adoptive parent living in another country. USCIS plays a key role in the intercountry adoption process.
United States immigration law provides three different processes through which someone may immigrate on the basis of an intercountry adoption. An individual may immigrate under one of these provisions only if the individual’s adoption meets all the requirements of that specific process.
Two separate processes apply only to children adopted by U.S. citizens. The child may immigrate immediately after the adoption or may immigrate to the U.S. to be adopted here.
- The Hague Process: if the child is habitually resident in a country that is a Party to the Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention.
- The Orphan Process (non-Hague): if the Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention does not apply.
Many aspects of the Hague and Orphan requirements are similar. To learn the details about each adoption process, see the links to the specific process under the “Immigration through Adoption” to the left.
Another process applies to a U.S. citizen or Permanent Resident who may petition for his or her adoptive child through an Immediate Relative Petition. See the “Other Adoption Related Immigration” to the left under “Immigration Through Adoption.”
The Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention) is an international treaty that provides important safeguards to protect the best interests of children, birth parents, and adoptive parents who are involved in intercountry adoptions.
The Hague Adoption Convention entered into force in the United States on April 1, 2008. All cases filed on or after April 1, 2008, seeking to adopt a child habitually resident in any country outside of the United States that is a party to the Convention must follow the Hague process.
If You Filed Before April 1, 2008
Under U.S. law, prospective adoptive parents who filed theI-600A, Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition, or the I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative, before April 1, 2008, may continue to process their adoptions under the current orphan regulations, provided that the laws of the country of the child’s origin allows for continuation under the current orphan regulations.
About the Process
A country that is a party to the Convention must have an officially designated Central Authority to ensure that the adoption process is safeguarded. The U.S. Central Authority is the Department of State (DOS).
Adoption Service Providers (ASP)
An adoption service provider must be accredited or otherwise authorized to provide adoption services in connection with a Hague adoption in order for the provider to assist the prospective adoptive parent(s) with a Hague adoption. Be sure to ask any adoption service provider whether the adoption service provider is authorized to work on Hague adoption cases before hiring or paying any money to the provider. For more information see the “Adoption Service Providers” link to the right.
An adoption service provider cannot provide legal advice or legal services to the prospective adoptive parent(s) or represent the prospective adoptive parent(s) before USCIS.
Steps of the Process
- Choose a Hague Accredited ASP (and perhaps also an immigration attorney).
- Obtain a home study from someone authorized to complete a Hague adoption home study
- Apply to USCIS before adopting a child or accepting a placement for a determination that one is suitable for intercountry adoption.
- Once USCIS approves the application, work with the adoption service provider to obtain a proposed adoption placement
- File a “petition” with USCIS, before adopting the child, to have the child to be found eligible to immigrate to the United States based on the proposed adoption
- Adopt the child, or obtain custody of the child in order to adopt the child in the United States
- Obtain an immigrant visa for the child
- Bring the child to the United States for admission with the visa
- Form I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country
- Form I-800, Petition to Classify Convention Adoptee as an Immediate Relative
Prospective adoptive parents must submit Form I-800A to USCIS in order to establish their eligibility and suitability.
If USCIS approves your Form I-800A, then you must submit Form I-800 to determine the child’s eligibility as a Convention adoptee, before adopting or obtaining legal custody of the child.
Waiver of Ground of Inadmissibility
If you have reason to believe that the child you wish to adopt may be inadmissible to the United States (on medical grounds, for example), you may file Form I-601, Application for Waiver of Ground of Inadmissibility, with Form I-800.
Eligibility to Adopt
Once you have obtained a favorable home study, file Form I-800A with USCIS. To be eligible to file Form I-800A, you must meet the following requirements:
- Be a U.S. citizen
- Habitually reside in the United States
- If you are married, your spouse must also sign your Form I-800A and must also intend to adopt any child whom you adopt.
- If you are not married, you must be at least 24 years of age when you file your Form I-800A, and you must be 25 years of age when you file your Form I-800.
Petitioning for Your Child
After we have approved your Form I-800A, you may apply to the Central Authority of the other country for a specific adoption placement. Once the Central Authority has proposed placing a child with you for adoption, but before you actually adopt the child, you must file Form I-800 on behalf of the child to be adopted. For a child to be classified as a Hague Convention Adoptee, the child must meet the following criteria:
- Under the age of 16 at the time of filing Form I-800
- Habitually reside in a Convention country
- Determined to be eligible for intercountry adoption by the Central Authority of that country and have obtained all necessary consents for adoption.
If you are married, your spouse must also sign the Form I-800 and adopt the child.
If you are not married, you must be at least 25 when you file the Form I-800.
After we provisionally approve your Form I-800, you may apply for a visa for the child and may complete the adoption of the child (or obtain custody to bring the child to the United States for adoption), once the Department of State advises you to do so.
NOTE: The adoption MUST NOT take place prior to filing Form I-800A/I-800, doing so contradicts the Hague Convention agreement.
Where to file?
See form instructions for where to file.
Hague Convention Countries
Currently there are 78 countries recognized by the United States as Hague Adoption Convention countries.
You May Immigrate an Adopted Child Through the Orphan Process if:
- You Are a U.S. citizen.
- If you are married, your spouse must also sign Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative and must also adopt the child.
- If you are not married, you must be at least 25 years old when you file the Form I-600 petition.
- You establish that you will provide proper parental care to the child.
- You establish that the child whom you have adopted or plan to adopt is an “orphan” as defined in U.S. immigration law.
- You establish that either:
- You (and your spouse, if married) have adopted the child abroad, and that each of you saw the child in person before or during the adoption proceeding
- You will adopt the child in the United States after the child arrives in the United States (you must have permission to bring the child out of his or her own country and to the United States for adoption).
- You (and your spouse, if married) have adopted the child abroad, and that each of you saw the child in person before or during the adoption proceeding
Who is an Orphan?
Under U.S. immigration law, an orphan is a foreign-born child who:
- does not have any parents because of the death or disappearance of, abandonment or desertion by, or separation or loss from, both parents
- has a sole or surviving parent who is unable to care for the child, consistent with the local standards of the foreign sending country, and who has, in writing, irrevocably released the child for emigration and adoption.
You must file an orphan petition before the child’s 16th birthday, or before the child’s 18th birthday if the child is a birth sibling of another child whom you have also adopted and who immigrated (or will immigrate) as:
- an orphan based on a Form I-600 petition filed before the sibling’s 16th birthday
- an “adopted child” as defined in Section 101(b)(1)(F) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provided the actual adoption took place before that sibling’s 16th birthday.
As part of the processing of your case, USCIS (or, in some cases, the Department of State) will conduct an investigation overseas to verify that the child is an orphan. The purpose of the investigation is to:
- Confirm that the child is an orphan as defined in the U.S. immigration law.
- Verify that you have obtained a valid adoption or grant of custody; the child does not have an illness or disability that is not described in the orphan petition.
- Determine whether the child has any special needs that were not fully addressed in your home study.
- Determine whether there are any facts showing that the child does not qualify for immigration as your adopted child.
Hague Adoption Convention Cases
If the child you seek to adopt habitually resides in a country that is a party to the Hague Adoption Convention, you probably will not be able to use the Orphan process. Instead you must follow the Hague Adoption Process to adopt the child and bring the child to the United States. For information on the Hague Process, see the “Hague Process” link to the left. For a list of Hague Convention Countries see the “Department of State Adoption Page” link to the right.
You may be able to use the Orphan process if you adopted the child before April 1, 2008, or if your case is “grandfathered” because you filed a Form I-600A or Form I-600 before April 1, 2008. For more information, see the “Grandfather I-600A Cases” link to the left under “After Approval.”
Home Study: Establishing Proper Parental Care
To establish your ability to provide proper parental care, you must submit a home study completed by someone authorized to complete an adoption home study in your home State (or anywhere in the United States, if you adopt the child while residing abroad).
The home study preparer must complete the home study according to the standards established in DHS regulations. For more information on home study requirements see the “Orphan Home Study Guidelines” link to the left under “Home Study Information.”
Filing a Petition for Your Child
You can have us review both your suitability as an adoptive parent and the child’s status as an orphan at the same time. If you have already identified a child you want to adopt (or you have already adopted the child), you may file Form I-600, Petition to Classify an Orphan as an Immediate Relative.
Submit your home study with your Form I-600 and any other relevant evidence that you are suitable as an adoptive parent. Submit evidence that the child is an orphan and that you have adopted or intend to adopt the child.
You may also begin the orphan process before you identify a particular child for adoption. You do so by filing Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition. Submit the home study with the Form I-600A. If USCIS approves your Form I-600A, the finding that you are suitable as an adoptive parent will make it unnecessary to address this issue again, when you file a Form I-600 for a particular child. Once a particular child has been identified, you would then file a Form I-600 for that child.
If you do not file Form I-600A, then you must complete all requirements of the I-600A when filing Form I-600. (see forms on the right).
Advanced Processing If You Have Not Selected a Country
You may apply for Advance Processing of an Orphan Petition without knowing the country of prospective adoption. However, if your Form I-600A is approved, you may not adopt a child from a Hague Convention Country if your Form I-600A was filed after April 1, 2008. For information on the Hague Process, see the “Hague Process” link to the left. For a list of Hague Convention Countries see the “Department of State Adoption Page” link to the right.
Where to file Form I-600A and Form I-600
- The Instructions for the Form I-600A indicate where you should file your Form I-600A.
- The Instructions for the Form I-600 indicate where you should file your Form I-600.
Before Traveling Abroad
- Verify that your Approval Notice is valid
- Verify that your fingerprints are still valid
- Contact the appropriate USCIS overseas office or U.S. embassy or consulate for details on processing times
After the Orphan Petition is Approved
Apply to a U.S. Embassy or consulate for a visa for your child. The Department of State officer who decides the visa application must determine whether your child is “inadmissible” under any provision in section 212(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. For children, the most common ground of inadmissibility is medical inadmissibility due to certain diseases, lack of required vaccinations, or other medical issues. If your child is inadmissible, you may be able to obtain a waiver of inadmissibility by filing Form I-601, Application for Waiver of Ground of Inadmissibility.
Visa Issuance and Acquisition of U.S. Citizenship
See the “Before Your Child Immigrates to the United States” link to the left for information about the type of visa your child will receive and about how and when your child may become a U.S. citizen under the Child Citizenship Act.
Other Adoption Related Immigration
Immigration Based on Adoption Other than Hague or Orphan Cases
The Hague and Orphan processes are special processes for children who are adopted by U.S. citizens and meet the specific requirements of those programs. There is, however, a third provision under which an adopted individual is considered the child (or adult son or daughter) of his or her adopting parent(s) for immigration purposes. This third provision is the immediate relative process.
There are differences between the Hague and Orphan processes and cases under this third process.
- This process is not limited to individuals who have been or are going to be adopted by U.S. citizens.
- The adopting parent must have evidence of a full and final adoption and satisfy custody and residence requirements before the adoption may be the basis for immigration benefits.
- Adopted children may petition for their parents and siblings. See “Who Can Be Petitioned For?” section below for more details.
Who is an Adopted Child Under the Immediate Relative Process?
Under this process, an adopted child is considered, for immigration purposes, to be the child (or adult son or daughter) of the adopting parent if:
- The parent adopted the child before his or her 16th birthday (or before the 18th birthday under certain circumstances as described below). Must submit evidence of a full and final adoption.
- The parent had legal and physical custody of the child for at least two years while the child was a minor.
- The legal custody must have been the result of a formal grant of custody from a court or other governmental entity.
- The custody and residence requirement may be met by custody and residence that preceded the adoption.
- The two years’ custody and residence requirements are waived for certain abused children.
A child is still considered to be an adopted child if they were adopted after his or her 16th birthday but before his or her 18th birthday, and:
- The child is the birth sibling of another child who was adopted by the same parent(s) before the other child’s 16th birthday and immigrated through the Immediate Relative Process.
- The child is the birth sibling of another child who was adopted by the same parent(s) before the other child’s 16th birthday and who immigrated as an orphan based on an adoption by the same parent(s).
Who Can Petition Under this Process for a Relative by Adoption?
- A U.S. citizen
- A permanent resident (green card holder)
U.S. Citizens May File a Petition for an Adopted:
- Child (unmarried and under the age of 21)
- Unmarried son or daughter over the age of 21
- Married son or daughter
- For additional information on filing a petition on behalf an immediate relative, please see the “Green Card” link to the right.
A Permanent Resident May File a Petition for an Adopted:
- Child (unmarried and under the age of 21)
- Unmarried son or daughter over the age of 21
What and Where to File
To begin the immigration process for your adopted relative, (as described above), file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. For information about where to file and what supporting evidence to submit, see the Instructions for Form I-130.
For more detailed legal information on this process see Section 101(b)(1)(E) of the Immigration and Nationality Act and 8 Code of Federal Regulations 8 CFR 204.2(d)(2).
The conditions in the country from which you choose to adopt will dictate the process of your adoption. Understanding the procedures in the different countries is an important part of selecting which country to adopt from.
Due to conditions in the following countries, case processing has been severely impacted.
There are new filing instructions for Nepali adoption petitions. Please see the “Filing Location Change for Nepali Adoption Petitions”, “Questions & Answers: U.S. Suspends Processing New Nepal Adoption Cases Based on Abandonment” and the “U.S. Suspends Processing New Nepal Adoption Cases Based on Abandonment” links to the right for more information.
Haiti’s adoption authority, the Institut du Bien-être Social et de Recherches(IBESR), has informed the U.S. Government that they are now accepting new adoption applications for Haitian children who were either documented as orphans before January 12, 2010, or who have been relinquished by their birth parent(s) since the earthquake. The U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince has also resumed normal visa processing.
You may also refer to “Haitian Child Paroled Under Special Circumstances” link on the left, if your Haitian child was paroled into the U.S. under the Special Humanitarian Parole Program for Haitian Orphans.
China Center of Adoption Affairs (CCAA) has announced that all prospective adoptive families will be required to work with a U.S. Hague accredited adoption service provider for both transition cases and Convention cases beginning December 1, 2009. This will require all families to work with an agency that is both U.S. Hague accredited and a CCAA-licensed agency for both transition cases and Convention cases for all steps in the intercountry adoption process. In order to facilitate this transition, CCAA has indicated that each non-accredited agency will be required to choose an accredited agency and transfer all remaining cases to that agency no later than December 1, 2009. This information will in turn be provided to CCAA. If an agency chooses not to turn over their files to an accredited agency, CCAA has indicated they will terminate the processing of those documents.
Prospective adoptive parents grandfathered under the orphan process will not be required by USCIS to obtain an updated home study based on this change in service provider. All cases grandfathered under the orphan process (I-600 process) transferred to a Hague accredited agency and a CCAA-licensed agency will continue to be processed in accordance with U.S. immigration regulations for orphan adoptions. For more information please refer to the Department of State country information page to the right or contact your individual adoption agency.
In June 2005, the United States and Vietnam concluded a bilateral agreement on intercountry adoption. This agreement expired September 1, 2008. Until a new bilateral agreement is reached, USCIS and the Department of State (DOS) determined it is in the best interest of children and families to not process any new Vietnam adoption cases filed after September 1, 2008.
The United States continues to strongly support the Vietnamese government’s efforts to establish an appropriate child adoption system with sound safeguards and protections for children and families. We cannot predict when a new bilateral adoption agreement with adequate safeguards for all parties will be concluded.
Guatemala is a party to the Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention. DOS determined that Guatemala is currently not meeting its obligations under the Convention. For this reason, DOS Consular officers cannot issue the required Hague Adoption Certificate or Hague Custody Declaration at this time.
In light of the inability to complete the immigration process for Hague cases, prospective adoptive parents are strongly urged not to file Form I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country, identifying Guatemala as the country from which they intend to adopt.
Cambodia is a party to the Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention. DOS determined that Cambodia is currently not meeting its obligations under the Convention. For this reason, DOS Consular officers cannot issue the required Hague Adoption Certificate or Hague Custody Declaration at this time.
In light of the inability to complete the immigration process for Hague cases, prospective adoptive parents are strongly urged not to file Form I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country, identifying Cambodia as the country from which they intend to adopt.
Additionally, the United States suspended orphan visa petition processing in Cambodia on December 21, 2001, due to the inability to verify that any particular Cambodian child is an “orphan” as defined in U.S. immigration law. It is important to note that this suspension remains in effect for any Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative, filed prior to April 1, 2008.
General Country Conditions
The DOS has dedicated a substantive section of its intercountry adoption website to country information. See the “Department of State Country Information” link to the right to find more information about:
- Whether a country is party to the Hague Adoption Convention
- A specific country’s adoption authority
- The eligibility requirements for prospective adoptive parents
- Who can be adopted
As part of the process to immigrate your adopted child to the United States, USCIS will conduct a background check on you, your spouse, and any household member of age 18 or older.
The background check is a required part of the adoption process.
Fingerprint-Based Criminal Records Check
The validity period of your fingerprint check will be noted on your Notice of Approval (I-171H or I-797). Your fingerprints never “expire” but the validity period of background check and clearance based on the collection of your fingerprints is 15-months.
The validity period of your background check and clearance may be different than the validity period of the approval of your Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition, or I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country.
Differing validity periods
If you are now filing a Form I-600 or Form I-800 and the validity of your Form I-600A or Form I-800A approval is current but the validity of your background check and clearance check has expired, then advise the National Benefits Center (NBC) via email at:
NBC.Adoptions@dhs.gov (For Non-Hague Cases I-600/600A) OR NBC.Hague@dhs.gov (For Hague Cases I-800/800A)
Include the prospective parent(s) name(s) and receipt number from your approved Form I-600A or I-800A in the email.
The NBC will then:
- instruct you on the submission of any required fees (via Request for Evidence (RFE) I-72), and
- schedule you for fingerprints
Note: the Lockbox is unable to accept fees for fingerprinting unless the request is submitted with a proper form (I-600/600A, I-800/800A, or RFE). Biometrics fees and requests for fingerprinting that are submitted to the Lockbox without a proper form will be rejected and returned to the applicant.
Your background check and clearance must be valid at the time your Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative or Form I-800, Petition to Classify Convention Adoptee as an Immediate Relative, is processed; regardless of whether your Form I-600A or I-800A Notice of Approval is still valid.
Checking Available Child Abuse Registries
In a Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention case, your home study preparer must check available child abuse registries for you, your spouse and each additional adult member of your household. This must be addressed in the home study.
- Child abuse registries must be checked in any State or foreign country that you, your spouse and any adult member of your household has resided in since that individual’s 18th birthday.
- USCIS may also conduct its own check of any child abuse registries.
The home study preparer must take one of the following courses of action:
- Allowed Access: If the home study preparer is allowed access to the child abuse registries, he/she must make the appropriate checks for the applicant and each additional adult member of the household.
- Permission Required: If the State or foreign country requires the home study preparer to secure permission from the applicant and each additional adult member of the household before gaining access to child abuse registries, the home study preparer must secure such permission and make the appropriate checks.
- Information Only to Individual: if the State or foreign country will only release information from the child abuse registry to the individual to whom the information relates, the prospective adoptive parents and adult members of the household must secure and provide information to the home study preparer.
- No Release: if the State or foreign country will not release information to the home study provider or the prospective adoptive parents or adult household member, the home study preparer must note the unavailability of information in the home study.
Orphan (Non-Hague) Cases
Screening For Abuse and Violence
- In an orphan case, your home study preparer must make a check of any available child abuse registry for you, your spouse and any adult member of your household in your current State or foreign country of residence.
- If your current State or foreign country will not release information to the home study provider or the prospective adoptive parents or adult household member, the home study preparer must note the unavailability of information in the home study.
After Approval of Orphan and Hague Application
In most cases, there is a two-step process in completing your adoption case. This varies by which process you choose.
The Hague Process
- If you filed Form I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country, and it was approved, you will receive Form I-797, Notice of Action.
- Notification of the approval will be forwarded to the National Visa Center (NVC), which will in turn forward to the Department of State overseas processing post.
After this first-step approval, but prior to filing the petition for your child, things may change in your case. See the link to the left under “After Approval” for information on:
- Extensions and validity periods
- Significant changes
- Change of country
For more information on the “Hague Process” and “Orphan Process,” see the links under “Immigration Through Adoption” to the left.
For information on Child Citizenship see the “Before Your Child Immigrates to the United States” link to the left.
The Orphan (Non-Hague) Process
- If you chose to file Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition, and it was approved, you will receive either Form I-171H, Notice of Favorable Determination Concerning Application for Advanced Processing of Orphan Petition or Form I-797, Notice of Action.
- Notification of the approval will be forwarded to the NVC), which will in turn forward to the Department of State overseas processing post.
After this first-step approval, but prior to filing the petition for your child, things may change in your case. See the links to the left under “After Approval” for information on:
- Extensions and validity periods
- Significant changes
- Change of country