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What are the Legal Requirements for International Adoption?

Adoption is one of the most rewarding experiences you can have. The chance to adopt a child into your home and provide him or her with the love and care needed is a great way to add to your family. One of the best options for families who wish to adopt a child is to seek an international adoption. International adoption is also called inter-country adoption and allows you to adopt a child from another country. An experienced adoption attorney will help guide you through the process to make adoption easier.

Inter-Country Adoption

Inter-country adoption is the adoption of a child from a foreign country. You must adopt a child from a foreign country by following the laws that pertain to legal international adoption. International adoptions are made through agencies. The agency will provide you with their prerequisites and will put you through a screening process. You may need to complete some parental training instruction and you will likely have to pass a home study evaluation. The purpose of the rigorous screening process is to ensure that every child will get placed in a permanent home where they will receive the care and love they need.

Wisconsin Adoption Requirements

Adoption in Wisconsin is subject to adoption laws. There are many requirements in place for adoptive parents. In general, when you bring a child into the United States from a foreign country, you will have obtained a guardianship order issued by the foreign court. The child will enter the United States with a visa. The adoptive parents must comply with the requirements of the Department of Children and Families. This generally requires posting a bond, completing pre-adoption training, and taking part in a home study. Adoptive parents must petition to adopt the child in Wisconsin within 60 days of bringing the child into the state.

Foreign Adoptions

Certain rules apply to adoptive parents when a child they adopt is granted an adoption order by a foreign country. Adoptive parents must register a foreign adoption order with the appropriate Wisconsin court within 365 days of the date the child enters the United States. The adoption is recognized the same as if the adoption was granted by a Wisconsin court. Parents must submit a certified copy of the adoption order to the court for review. The parents must provide a sworn statement indicating that they took part in pre-adoptive training and participated in a home study prior to the adoption.

Child Citizenship

Of concern to adoptive parents is how a foreign child they adopt will become a U.S. citizen. Under the federal Child Citizenship Act of 2000, children who are brought into the U.S. on a visa by a guardian as part of an adoption are granted citizenship when a foreign court grants the adoption. In Wisconsin, a foreign child brought into the state under a guardianship order and visa will automatically be granted citizenship effective on the date of adoption.

Adoptions can be complex and it is important to follow the law to ensure that the adoption is legally executed. A knowledgeable adoption attorney will help you through the process. To learn more about adoptions, contact us today  at (608) 784-8310 or online.

Published November 20, 2023
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