Who Can Be Adopted from India

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The Masjid-i-Jahan Numa in New Dehli.

Because India is party to the Hague Adoption Convention, children from India must meet the requirements of the Convention in order to be eligible for adoption. For example, the adoption may take place only if the competent authorities of India have determined that placement of the child within India has been given due consideration and that an intercountry adoption is in the child’s best interests. In addition to India’s requirements, a child must meet the definition of Convention adoptee to be eligible for an immigrant visa that will allow you to bring him or her to the United States.


Relinquishment and Abandonment: Regional Child Welfare Committees (CWCs) determine whether a child has been relinquished or abandoned for adoption purposes.

Age of Adoptive Child: Children up to 18 years of age are eligible for intercountry adoption, as cleared by the CWC. (Note: Under U.S. immigration laws, children adopted through the Convention process must be under the age of 16 at the time a petition is filed on their behalf, unless they are the older sibling under age 18 of a child also adopted by the same prospective adoptive parents).

Sibling Adoptions: Sibling adoptions are encouraged. The maximum age limit for intercountry adoption may be waived if the CWC approves.

Special Needs or Medical Conditions: CARA reviews the homestudy to ensure that prospective adoptive parents are equipped to provide appropriate care for the child.

Waiting Period or Foster Care: Prospective adoptive parents can foster a child with permission from the RIPA and after obtaining a “No Objection Certificate” (NOC) from CARA. The prospective adoptive parents must submit an affidavit indicating they will not leave the country without a valid court order, and may choose to provide a copy to the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi.

Intra-Family Adoption: CARA is in the process of finalizing specific procedures for intra-family adoption. In the meantime, the CARA will consider applications for intra-family adoption on a case-by-case basis in exigent circumstances, such as in cases where both of the child’s parents have died. Prospective adoptive parents should submit an approved home study report and a letter from a Hague accredited adoption service provider stating that the adoption service provider will help process the case, including a commitment to provide periodic post-adoption reporting. Prospective adoptive parents habitually residing in the United States must also follow U.S. immigration procedures applicable to children adopted under the Convention.

Adoption of Tibetan Children: CARA will not process cases involving the adoption of Tibetan children. If prospective adoptive parents are adopting a Tibetan child, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) may consider granting a clearance for the adoption or guardianship order. The MEA has taken these on a case-by-case basis, and the process can be very time-consuming.

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