U.S. Law Center

What is the Hague Convention and how does it affect my adoption?

If you are adopting a child from outside the United States to live with you in Riverside County, the type of documentation you will need to file will depend largely on which country the child will be coming from. Adoptions from certain countries are governed by the Hague Convention. The Convention is an agreement between several countries that sets forth the standards for international adoptions.

According to the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs, the agreement was signed by the U.S. in 1994 and the rules went into effect in 2008. The Convention affords some protections to families who are adopting that they might not otherwise receive if they adopt from a country that is not part of the Convention.

The Convention has a few different purposes. One of them is to protect the interests of the children who are adopted by stopping them from being sold or abducted. It also intended to be a way for children to find permanent homes with families outside of their birth country once it has been established that suitable placement cannot be found at home.

If you are looking to adopt a child from a country that is a party to the Convention, you will need to file the proper paperwork with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. It is important the you fill out the correct documents since the forms for adopting from a country that is not part of the Convention are different. Examples of countries that are parties to the Convention include India, China and Mexico.

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