February 2007Vol. 8, No. 1Hague Adoption Convention Updates
The United States is nearing its goal of ratification and full implementation of the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption. The Convention is designed to ensure that participating nations have agreed-upon rules and procedures for intercountry adoption and that these processes safeguard the well-being of children. More than 70 countries have already joined the Convention, and many other countries are working toward joining.
The U.S. Department of State has issued a final rule to implement the certification and declaration provisions of the Hague Convention and the Intercountry Adoption Act of 2000 with respect to adoption and custody proceedings taking place in the United States. This final rule governs the application process for Hague Adoption Certificates and Hague Custody Declarations in cases involving emigration of a child from the United States. It also establishes a process for seeking certification that an adoption completed in the United States following a grant of custody in a Convention country of origin was done in accordance with the Convention.
Effective December 4, 2006, the final rule is the next step in the process of achieving final ratification of the Hague Convention. The process is expected to be completed in 2007. The final rule is available in the Federal Register:
In anticipation of the U.S. ratification of the Convention, the State Department has published a booklet, The Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption: A Guide for Prospective Adoptive Parents, that is designed to help persons considering adopting from another country better understand the impact of the provisions of the Convention. The booklet provides an overview of the principles of the Convention, changes to the intercountry adoption process, new standards for adoption service providers, and a list of ratifying countries. The booklet is available on the State Department website:
Children's Bureau Express has long tracked the Hague Convention's progress, most recently in "Final Rule on Intercountry Adoption Accreditation" (April 2006).