Who Can Adopt from Uganda


Ugandan law places restrictions on the ability of foreign citizens to adopt Ugandan children. The Children's Act states that a foreign citizen may, in exceptional circumstances, adopt a Ugandan child if the foreigner has resided in Uganda for at least three years and if the foreigner has also fostered the child for 36 months. However, recently High Court judges have made some exceptions to these three-year residency and fostering requirements on a case-by-case basis if it was deemed to be the best interest of the child. It is unclear whether this is a permanent change in the interpretation of the law.

Ugandan High Court judges have also exercised discretion in approving legal guardianship decrees (which may permit the child to emigrate for full and final adoption abroad) in certain cases where the prospective adoptive parents were unable to meet the requirements for adoption in Uganda.

In addition to U.S. immigration requirements, you must also meet the following requirements in order to adopt a child from Uganda:


Unless a judge waives the fostering requirements, prospective adoptive parents must reside in Uganda with their prospective adoptive child for three years. This means that a foreign citizen may adopt a Ugandan child if the foreigner has resided in Uganda for at least three years, and has also fostered the child for 36 months.

Age of Adopting Parents

Applicants must be at least 25 years old and 21 years older than the child they plan to adopt. In the case of a married couple, it is sufficient for one spouse to meet these requirements.


Married couples must adopt jointly. Single parents may adopt, but they may not adopt a child of the opposite sex (unless an exception is made). While Uganda does not specifically prohibit adoption by LGBT individuals or couples, political and cultural perspectives in Uganda may mean that same-sex couples may not be approved for adoption by Ugandan courts. Single gay and lesbian applicants may face additional scrutiny or not be approved if the courts become aware of their sexual orientation.


There are no specific income requirements for Ugandan adoption, although prospective adoptive parents must be able to prove financial stability.


Foreign adoptive parents must demonstrate they have no criminal record, and that they have been approved by their country of nationality to adopt.

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