Adopting from Bulgaria

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The official flag.



Bulgarian dancers in traditional attire.

Downtown Sofia.

Oil Cape.

Collage of Sofia.

The official coat of arms.

Notice: As of July 14, 2014, all individuals and agencies facilitating international adoptions must be in compliance with the Intercountry Universal Accreditation Act.

The information contained on this website is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional legal advice. Always seek the advice of a licensed and qualified professional. While the content of this website is frequently updated, information changes rapidly and therefore, some information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies, omissions or typographical errors.

About Bulgaria

The Bulgars, a Central Asian Turkic tribe, merged with the local Slavic inhabitants in the late 7th century to form the first Bulgarian state. In succeeding centuries, Bulgaria struggled with the Byzantine Empire to assert its place in the Balkans, but by the end of the 14th century the country was overrun by the Ottoman Turks. To learn more, read About Bulgaria (The Country).

Bulgarian National Anthem

To learn more, read about the Bulgarian National Anthem.

Hague Convention Information

WARNING: Bulgaria is party to the Hague Adoption Convention. Do not adopt or obtain legal custody of a child in Bulgaria before a U.S. consular officer issues an “Article 5 Letter.” See the “How to Adopt” section for more information. To learn more, read about Bulgaria and the Hague Convention.

Bulgaria Travel Facts

Learn more about Bulgaria by reading Bulgaria Travel Fact Sheet.

Bulgarian Adoption Background

The majority of children available for adoption in Bulgaria are of Roma ethnicity or Turkish decent. Most of the children available for international adoption were relinquished or abandoned at birth and have not been removed from the home due to abuse and neglect. Once relinquished, children are placed in the care of the government. To learn more, read about Bulgarian Adoption Background.

Who Can Adopt

Adoption between the United States and Bulgaria is governed by the Hague Adoption Convention. Therefore to adopt from Bulgaria, you must first be found eligible to adopt by the U.S. government. The U.S. government agency responsible for making this determination is the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). To learn more, read about Who Can Adopt from Bulgaria.

Who Can Be Adopted

Children are listed on the registry for domestic adoption if they are officially relinquished or abandoned by the parents. If no Bulgarian family adopts a child from the domestic registry within six months of listing, the child is entered into the registry for international adoptions, maintained by the Ministry of Justice. To learn more, read about Who Can Be Adopted from Bulgaria.

How to Adopt

Adoption Authority

Bulgaria’s Adoption Authority

Department of International Legal Child Protection and Intercountry Adoptions Ministry of Justice. To learn more, read about How to Adopt from Bulgaria.

Traveling Abroad

Applying for Your U.S. Passport

U.S. citizens are required by law to enter and depart the United States on a valid U.S. passport. Only the U.S. Department of State has the authority to grant, issue, or verify U.S. passports. Getting or renewing a passport is easy. The Passport Application Wizard will help you determine which passport form you need, help you to complete the form online, estimate your payment, and generate the form for you to print—all in one place. To learn more, read about Traveling Abroad in Bulgaria.

After Adoption

What does Bulgaria require of the adoptive parents after the adoption?

Bulgaria requires adoptive parents to submit post adoption reports. The Ministry of Justice requires four post-placement reports – one every six months after the adoption for the first two years.

We strongly urge you to comply with all post-adoption requirements in a timely manner. Your adoption agency may be able to help you with this process. Your cooperation will contribute to Bulgaria’s history of positive experiences with U.S. parents.

What resources are available to assist families after the adoption?

Many adoptive parents find it important to find support after the adoption. Take advantage of all the resources available to your family -- whether it’s another adoptive family, a support group, an advocacy organization, or your religious or community services.

Here are some good places to start your support group search:

Child Welfare Information Gateway

North American Council on Adoptable Children

Adoption Services Support Groups for Adopting Persons

NOTE: Inclusion of non-U.S. government links does not imply endorsement of content.

Contact Information

U.S. Embassy in Bulgaria

16 Kozyak Street Sofia 1408 Bulgaria Tel: (359 2) 937-5100 Fax: (359 (2) 937-5122 Email: Internet: U.S. Embassy in Bulgaria

Bulgarian Adoption Authority

Ministry of Justice Slavyanska Street # 1 Sofia 1040 Bulgaria Tel: (359 2) 923-7303 (Bulgarian only) Internet: Ministry of Justice

Embassy of Bulgaria

Embassy of Bulgaria 1621 22nd Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20008 Tel: 202-387-0174 (main), 202-387-7969 (consular section) Fax: 202-234-7973 Email:, Internet: Embassy of Bulgaria

Bulgaria also has consulates in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles.

Office of Children’s Issues

U.S. Department of State CA/OCS/CI SA-17, 9th Floor Washington, DC 20522-1709 Tel: 1-888-407-4747 Email: Internet: U.S. Department of State

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

For questions about immigration procedures: National Customer Service Center (NCSC) Tel: 1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833) Internet: USCIS

For questions about filing a Form I-800A application or I-800 petition: National Benefits Center Tel: 1-877-424-8374 (toll free); 1-816-251-2770 (local) Email:


Intercountry Adoption, Bureau of Consular Affairs. U.S. Department of State Country Information