Steps to Adoption: South America

Posted by Heather Sewell on June 17, 2013  /   Posted in Adoption

By: Chris Crutchfield

There are many factors to consider during the adoption process.  Choosing the geographic location where your child/children will come from is at the top of the

list.   Some things to consider when adopting internationally are: age, gender, ethnicity, medical needs, and special needs of the child. Requirements of each country must also be considered.

Some countries have certain standards that must be met, such as the age, health, income, and racial background of the prospective parents.   Another consideration is membership in the Hague Convention. (This is an international agreement between many countries to safeguard children who are eligible, streamline and standardize adoption regulations, expectations, and laws.)  The US prefers to work with countries that are Hague Convention members, although it is not a requirement.

Today, we are going to highlight a few countries within South America.  All are Hague Convention members.


* Open for adoption but can be a lengthy process.

*Children eligible for adoption are generally 9-12 years old and only when a Brazilian home cannot be found.

* Prospective parents are required to live in Brazil a minimum of 30 days with the child.

*In 2011, 9 children from Brazil were adopted by US parents.


*Open for adoption, however there are travel warnings due to narcotics-related     terrorism

*One trip of approximately 3-8 weeks required

*A childless couple cannot specify gender of adoptive child

*Post-placement reports/supervision for 6 months following adoption

*In 2011, 216 children from Columbia were adopted by US parents



*2 trips required:  first, 3-4 weeks long; second, 1 week

*Married couples can have no prior divorce; single women can only adopt girls and single men can only adopt boys

*Post-placement reports required until child reaches the age of majority

*In 2011, 6 children from Ecuador were adopted by US parents



*If married, both parents must visit country

*Prospective parents must live in the country 10-15 days so attachment can be evaluated.

*Post-placement/supervision required for 4 years

*In 2011, 13 children were adopted by US parents


In most cases, international adoptions are finalized in the country of origin.  Once you return to the US with your child, he/she is legally yours!

(all information can be found on


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