Adopting from Kosovo
Hague Convention Information
Kosovo is not party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention). Therefore, when the Hague Adoption Convention entered into force for the United States on April 1, 2008, intercountry adoption processing for Kosovo did not change.
PLEASE NOTE: The United States has an Embassy in Pristina that provides limited services to U.S.citizens in Kosovo. Immigrant visa applications for Kosovo citizens are processed at the U.S. Embassy in Skopje, Macedonia.
The following is intended as a very general guide to assist U.S. citizens who plan to adopt achild in Kosovo and apply for an immigrant visa for the child to come to the United States.
Two sets of laws are particularly relevant:
- The laws of Kosovo govern all activity in Kosovo including the adoptability of individual children as well as the adoption of children in country.
- U.S. federal immigration law governs the immigration of the child to the United States.
The information in this flier relating to the legal requirements of specific foreign areas is based on public sources and our current understanding. It does not necessarily reflect the actual state of the laws of Kosovo and is provided for general information only. Moreover, U.S. immigration law, including regulations and interpretation, changes from time to time. This flyer reflects our current understanding of the law as of this date and is not legally authoritative. Questions involving foreign and U.S. immigration laws and legal interpretation should be addressed respectively to qualified foreign or U.S. legal counsel.
Who Can Adopt
To bring an adopted child to United States from Kosovo, you must 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). Learn more.
According to the law, there are no residency requirements to complete an international adoption in Kosovo. However, there is a fostering period of 2 to 3 months prior to the final adoption of the child, where the prospective adoptive parents are required to live with the child in Kosovo, before the final approval for adoption is given to the parents.
Age of Adopting Parents
According to the applicable law in Kosovo, the minimum age for prospective parents is 21. If spouses intend to adopt a child, one of the spouses must have reached 25 years of age and the other spouse must have reached 21 years of age. The law has not established an age limit or civil status requirement(single, married or divorced) and how old the prospective parents must be in order to adopt, although it is preferred that at least one of the prospective parents be not older than 55 years.
Marriage certificate (not older than six months)
Letter of employment with salary or income information (for both spouses, if applicable)
- Written request for adoption - signed by both spouses;
- Birth certificate - for each spouse;
- Identification document (true copy of photo ID and passport, issued by State or Federal government agency) for both spouses;
- Proof of Nationality;
- Medical certificate regarding health condition and adoption capability - for both spouses, i.e., general health, illnesses that might impact on ones ability to care for a child, etc.;
- Evidence of economic condition (i.e., property ownership, bank statements);
- Statement from local police authorities that applicants have no criminal record;
- Certificate from a competent authority certifying that parental rights have never been taken away from either spouse;
- Home Study by competent adoption authority in the parents' place of residence.
NOTE: All documents must be translated into Albanian or Serbian depending on the child's nationality. The documentation noted above should be original and issued in the past 6 months. All documents must be translated into Albanian or Serbian (depending on the place of origin for the child). If a child's nationality is unknown, then documents only need to be translated into Albanian. (Include information about gay and lesbian adoption, and/or adoption by same-sex couples, if available.)
Who Can Be Adopted
How to Adopt
Intercountry Adoption, Bureau of Consular Affairs. U.S. Department of State Country Information