Investigation on Halted Nepal Adoptions

The United States Government shut down adoptions from Nepal in 2010 due to extreme irregularities in the official documents of its children. At the time there were 56 families who were prevented from adopting their children from Nepal. The adoption agencies were required to prove that no fraud or irregularities led to the children’s orphan status before the suspension would be lifted by the U.S. According to an independent investigation, however, The U.S. Embassy in Nepal has already issued a report stating it found no evidence of fraud in the documentation.

The investigation on Nepal adoptions was launched by a child welfare group called Both Ends Burning. In their investigative report, they claim that the embassy was “unwilling to accept the of fraud as evidence of the children’s orphan status.” This independent investigation on Nepal Adoptions also found that adoptive families were additionally forced to pay $25,000 for the investigations confirming the orphan status of their adopted children. These cost arose from hiring lawyers and investigators to overcome the Department of State’s conclusion that the Nepali children were not eligible for U.S. immigration Benefits.

For 200 days the children were left in a type of adoption limbo and almost all were living in sub-standard conditions for Nepal. During the investigation on Nepal adoptions investigators found that all the cases of fraud and trafficking were unsubstantiated. All 56 families were able to move forward with their adoptions and their Nepali children are now living with them.

“Nepal is one of the clearest examples of the absurdity of the U.S. Government’s approach to orphans and inter-country adoption,” said Chuck Johnson, President and CEO at National Council For Adoption. “They banned inter-country adoption for undefined fears of child trafficking, and refused to help engaged and well-intentioned Nepalese adoption officials address their alleged concerns. As a result the U.S. government doomed orphans that could have been adopted into loving families.”Both Ends Burning wants the Department of State to lift the suspension on Nepal adoptions.

Written by J.R. Timothy