Guest Author - Brandii Lacey
The Department of State’s Intercountry Adoption website provides recent updates for those adopting or considering adopting from another country. One recent update involves a country that is recovering from a devastating earthquake: Haiti.
Soon after the earthquake, adoptions abruptly halted, largely in part to individuals trying to rescue and save some of the children. According to news reports, these individuals were not a part of a licensed adoption agency, or a part of any authority figure that had the right to remove children to begin with.
Understandably, this raised many questions and concerns in Haiti and in the United States. As a result, adoptions were shut down. Thankfully, however, adoptions have resumed---through licensed adoption agencies, that is. This is wonderful news for both the children who were available for adoption prior to the earthquake, and the many children who are now available for adoption as a result of the earthquake.
Parents wishing to adopt from Haiti should interview adoption agencies that are familiar with Haiti’s laws and regulations regarding adoption. As with many adoptions, they should prepare for a potentially lengthy process. Start by reviewing the eligibility requirements on the Department of State’s Intercountry Adoption website. Confirm any potential adoption agencies are licensed in the state in which they operate.
In addition, confirm the agencies clearly state the same eligibility requirements as defined by the Department of State. Research any potential adoption agencies through the Better Business Bureau services. Remember, there is an adoption process in place for a reason, so be cautious of any potential adoption situations that do not follow both the United States and Haitian adoption laws. No matter how rich or poor a country is, adoption rules and regulations are there for a reason.
For more information on Haiti adoption requirements, or to learn about the most recent adoption requirements for any other country, visit the Department of State’s Intercountry Adoption website at adoption.state.gov.