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Non-Hague Adoption

 

The process for adopting a child from a non-Convention country differs in some key ways from adopting from a Convention country. To date, about 75 countries have joined the Hague Adoption Convention.Visa Types for Non-Convention Adoptions

 

Children adopted in non-Convention countries receive IR-3 or IR-4 immigrant visas.

 

IR-3 visas are issued after a full and final adoption is completed abroad by both adopting parents; both parents physically see the child prior to or during local adoption proceedings; and the country in which the child resides does not require re-adoption in the United States.  Children who are under 18 automatically acquire U.S. citizenship upon entry to the United States on IR-3 visas.  In such cases, USCIS automatically sends Certificates of Citizenship without requiring additional forms or fees. 

 

IR-4 visas are issued to children for whom a full and final adoption will be completed in the United States.  This classification is used when a foreign country only permits prospective adoptive parents to obtain guardianship of a child, rather than allowing a full and final adoption; and/or the prospective adoptive parent(s) have not seen and observed the child prior to the adoption process.  Orphans admitted to the United States on IR-4 visas become lawful permanent residents and are automatically processed to receive an Alien Registration Card ("green card").  See our web page on the Child Citizenship Act for more information.

 

Steps in the Non-Convention Adoption Process

1.     Choosing a Licensed Adoption Service Provider

2.     Applying to be Found Eligible to Adopt

3.     Being Referred for a Child

4.     Adopting the Child

5.     Applying for the Child to be Found Eligible for Immigration to the United States

6.     Obtaining an Immigrant Visa for the Child

 
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