The Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-Country Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention) is an international agreement to safeguard intercountry adoptions.
Concluded on May 29, 1993 in The Hague, the Netherlands, the Convention establishes international standards of practices for intercountry adoptions.
The United States signed the Convention in 1994, and the Convention entered into force for the United States in April 2008.
The Hague Adoption Convention applies to all adoptions between the United States and the other counties that have joined it (Convention countries).
Adopting a child from a Convention country is similar in many ways to adopting a child from a country not party to the Convention. However, there are some key differences. In particular, those seeking to adopt receive greater protections if they adopt from a Convention country.
The Hague requires that countries who support the Convention establish a Central Authority to be the authoritative source of information and point of contact in that country. The Department of State is the U.S. Central Authority for the Convention.
The Hague Convention:
- Aims to prevent the abduction, sale of, or traffic in children, and it works to ensure that inter-country adoptions are in the best interests of children.
- Recognizes inter-country adoption as a means of offering the advantage of a permanent home to a child when a suitable family has not been found in the child’s country of origin.
- Enables inter-country adoption to take place when,
- the child has been deemed eligible for adoption by the child’s country of birth; and
- proper effort has been given to the child’s adoption in its country of origin.
- Provides a formal international and intergovernmental recognition of inter-country adoption, working to ensure that adoptions under the Convention will generally be recognized and given effect in other party countries.
The following countries are parties to the Hague Adoption Convention. We refer to these countries as Convention Countries. Intercountry adoptions between the United States and Convention countries must follow Hague adoption procedures.
Countries absent from the list are not party to the Hague Adoption Convention. We refer to those countries as non-Convention countries. Intercountry adoptions between the United States and countries not listed below must follow non-Hague adoption procedures.
More information about the Hague Convention can be found at the US Department of State.
NOTE: The United States is not currently processing new adoptions with countries in UPPER CASE struck through letters;
|Burkina Faso||Israel||San Marino|
|China (and Hong Kong)||Lithuania||Spain|
|Dominican Republic||Mexico||United Kingdom|