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March 2008

March 31, 2008. Hague Watch: State Department Offers Resource for Questions on Hague Convention. In anticipation of the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption becoming effective in the United States, the State Department has established AdoptionUSCA@state.gov. Any person having questions about the application or interpretation of the Hague Convention can send his or her questions to this website. The State Department promptly responds to all such questions.

March 27, 2008. Hague Watch: Readoption No Longer Necessary for Hague Convention Adoptions. Most U.S. parents who adopt internationally choose to readopt their children in the U.S., irrespective of whether the parents have completed a full and final foreign adoption. Among other reasons, parents have been advised to readopt to ensure full recognition of the adoption. However, children who are adopted from Hague Convention countries into the U.S. after April 1 will receive from the State Department a certificate of Hague Compliance which pursuant to the Intercountry Adoption Act of 2000 will serve as documentary evidence for recognition of the adoption, in the U.S., as well as in other Hague countries.

March 26, 2008. Hague Watch: Hague Convention Governs Outgoing Cases As Well. Proper focus has been paid to the ways the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption will change adoption by U.S. citizens of children from other countries which have ratified the Hague Convention. Less attention has been paid to the fact that the Hague Convention will also govern adoptions from the U.S. to other Hague countries. The U.S. is a sending as well as a receiving country for ICA and the Convention, the Intercounty Adoption Act and the various regulations will have a major effect on adoptions from the U.S. to Canada, Britain and other Hague Convention nations. Moreover, the Hague Convention will also alter the way in which U.S. citizens resident abroad adopt children.

March 25, 2008. Hague Watch: Which ICA Does it Cover? The Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption, which becomes effective in the United States on April 1, covers Intercountry Adoption between Hague Convention countries. It does not cover ICA to the U.S. from countries in which the Hague Convention is not effective. ICA from non-Hague Convention countries to the U.S. will be permitted and will continue under the same rules as before. The I-600/A forms will still be in effect for ICA to the U.S. from non-Hague countries. However, the State Department does envision that countries such as Vietnam and Russia, which are not Hague countries, will progress toward a Hague-like system if not the actual Hague process itself.

March 24, 2008. Hague Watch: DHS and USCIS Re-opens Comment Period for Hague Related Regulations. We are delighted to state that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Citizenship and Immigration Services have reopened the comment period relating to Hague Convention related regulations on Intercountry Adotpion. CAP, together with Joint Council on International Children's Services and other adoption professionals, has been working steadily to achieve this opportunity to provide input into these crucial regulations which will govern all adoptions to and from Hague Convention countries. We hope that all interested parties will submit comments. CAP will be providing further information on this topic in the weeks ahead.

March 20, 2008. Hague Watch: Good-bye to I-600/I-600A. As of April 1, potential adoptive parents must use the new I-800/I-800A forms for all Intercountry Adoptions to and from Hague Convention countries. The only exception is for PAPs who are grandfathered because they have 1) previously filed an I-600/I600A and 2) both their I-600/I-600A approval and their fingerprint approval have remained up to date. If either approval has lapsed, PAPs must file I-800/I800A forms to renew their applications.

March 19, 2008. Hague Watch: Ten Business Days To Go. On April 1, 2008 the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption will be effective in the United States for all Intercountry Adoptions between the United States and other Hague Convention countries. In recognition of this momentous event, we will devote our Newscaps from today through April 1 to various aspects of the Hague Convention and how its effectiveness will affect Intercountry Adoption to and from the United States.

March 18, 2008. Chinese Adoption Fees Changing. After months of rumors, we have confirmed reports that some orphanages in Guangxi have raised their adoption fees from $3,000 to $5,000. Moreover, orphanages in Jiangsu province have announced that they will follow as of April 2008. Given the fall in the dollar as well as global inflation rates, the $3,000 is a much smaller sum than it was when Intercountry Adoption from China began. We fully expect other social welfare institutes and children's welfare institutes in other provinces to raise their fees as well. Agencies would be well advised to prepare clients for higher fees.

March 17, 2008. Kazakhstan Closes to New Intercountry Adoption. The Kazakhstan government has suspended the processing of any new dossiers for Intercountry Adoption effective immediately. The Kazakhstan government is not accepting any new dossiers at the present time. We understand that Prospective Adoptive Parents whose dossiers are already being processed in-country will be able to complete their adoptions. Dossiers which are in process at various Kazakhstan Embassy and Consulates will be frozen in place. They will not be forwarded to Almaty until the Kazakh government has completed a review of the ICA process. We are dismayed beyond words at yet another program shutting its doors. More Information.

March 13, 2008. Domestic and Intercountry Adoption India Shows Steady Decline Despite Growing Interest. According to a report by the Indian journal Frontline, both domestic and Intercountry Adoption has fallen in India over the last five years. In 2001 domestic adoption and ICA totaled 3,831; five years later the number was 3,261. What is particularly striking about these numbers is that India has millions of unparented children and that domestic Indian interest in adoption is growing. According to Nomita Chandy, director of the child welfare organization Ashraya, South Indian families are eager to adopt girls, older children and waiting children but find the adoption procedures unsympathetic and intolerably long. More Information.

March 12, 2008. Congo-Brazzaville Ends Ban on Intercountry Adoption. The Republic of Congo-Brazzaville has lifted its ban on Intercountry Adoption. This country (not to be confused with its larger neighbor, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, formerly known as Zaire), had imposed a total ban on ICA in 2006 after employees of a French NGO were accused of stealing children in order for them to be adopted in France. The Republic of Congo was formerly a French colony and retains strong ties with France. More Information.

March 11, 2008. Casa Quivira Case Casts Shadow Over Guatemalan Adoptions. Guatemalan authorities have been conducting an investigation of adoptions handled by the adoption agency Casa Quivira since last summer. This agency was long considered a very reputable one but prosecutors say that nine out of 46 children found at the house during the raid on it had fraudulent identities and half the birth mothers could not be located. Ten of the children have since been adopted and are living in the United States; they all have green cards and most are United States citizens. However, according to the Solicitor General Mario Gordillo, if an adoption were proved to be fraudulent, Guatemalan authorities would move to invalidate the adoption and bring the child back to Guatemala. More Information.

March 10, 2008. Growth of Medical Fertility Tourism Changes Family Creation Landscape. The availability of India as a destination for surrogate motherhood, coming at the same time as international adoption has become more difficult, is altering the way in which families are created. This "reproductive outsourcing" is making it possible for potential parents, who could not afford to hire a surrogate in the United States, to become parents. The cost in India is around $25,000, roughly the same as an international adoption, but one-third of what a surrogacy arrangement would cost in the United States. The irony is that Indian law permits these arrangements but does not allow very many international adoptions of its estimated 11 million unparented children. More Information.

March 6, 2008. Romanian Children Sold and Abused in Italy. Several articles have been recently published which highlight the plight of Romanian children. Italian authorities arrested numerous individuals for trafficking newborn babies in Italy. At the same time Italian officials reported that they have shut down a network of children who were enslaved in Romania and then brought to Italy to beg. These children, who ranged in age from 8 - 13 were threatened with grievous injury should they not produce a steady stream of income. Reports indicate that the organizers of these criminal enterprises were Romanian citizens. These are the real traffickers and they must be stopped.

March 5, 2008. CCAA Continues Trend of Small Number of Referrals. The China Center of Adoption Affairs sent referrals this week of Non Special Needs children to Potential Adoptive Parents whose dossiers had been logged in with CCAA between December 28, 2005 through January 4, 2006. This batch covered five business days for CCAA. With these small referral groups, PAPs are now waiting over two years, two months for their referrals. A number of families received referrals for boys. These parents will be able travel to China without worrying about the potential delaying factor of the Olympics.

March 4, 2008. CIS Forms for Hague Country Adoptions Available. The Citizenship and Immigration Services has released the new I-800 and I-800A forms which will be necessary for all Intercountry Adoptions to the United States from Hague Convention countries begun on or after April 1, 2008. We urge adoption service provides to become acquainted with these forms which will replace the I-600 and I-600A forms for Convention adoptions. These forms may be accessed here.

March 3, 2008. Hague Accredited Service Providers Announced. The State Department released on Friday the first listing of Accredited, Temporarily Accredited, and Approved Hague Adoption Service Providers. These are the only service providers which will be authorized to act as primary service providers when the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption goes into effect next month in the United States. We were delighted to see the list; it marks yet another step toward the long standing American goal of Intercountry Adoption under the Hague. For a complete list of all accredited providers, click here.

Center for Adoption Policy (CAP)
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