Nepal and the Hague Convention

A field in Terai.

Nepal is not party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption(Hague Adoption Convention). Intercountry adoptions of children from non-Hague countries are processed in accordance with 8 Code of Federal Regulations, Section 204.3 as it relates to orphans as defined under the Immigration and Nationality Act, Section 101(b)(1)(F).

On August 6, 2010, the U. S. Department of State and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) suspended processing of new adoption cases from Nepal involving children claimed to have been found abandoned because documents presented in support of the abandonment of these children in Nepal were unreliable. Cases involving relinquishment by known birth parent(s) were not affected by the suspension.

Due to concerns regarding the reliability of Nepal's adoption system, any relinquishment cases received by the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu will require complex investigations, which may include birth parent interviews and DNA testing. Although we have not yet received any such cases, and cannot estimate the amount of time needed for any individual investigation, we caution that investigations may require significant time and expenses that would likely raise the overall costs for prospective adoptive parents.

Prospective adoptive parents are strongly encouraged to read the December 31, 2012 notice concerning adoptions in Nepal before making a decision to pursue an adoption in Nepal.


To bring an adopted child to the United States from Nepal, you must meet eligibility and suitability requirements. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) determines who can adopt under U.S. immigration law.

Additionally, a child must meet the definition of orphan under U.S. immigration law in order to be eligible to immigrate to the United States on an IR-3 or IR-4 immigrant visa.

Back to Adopting from Nepal