India International Adoption Process and Cost

Over the years international adoption numbers have fallen but one country that has remained a reliable source for international adoptions has been India. With a population of over a billion people, India has many displaced children that need a forever home. Currently, international adoptions from India are possible.

International adoption from India is one of the many options for adopting a child internationally. While India joined the Hague Adoption Convention much later, in 2003, they have since been one of the largest contributors to international adoption next only to China. India has requirements and rules for adoption that must be followed for a successful adoption. The total costs for the adoption are around $15 – $30,000.

You might be just starting out on your research towards international adoption or this might not be your first adoption, either way, we would like to help you find out more about an international adoption from India, its process and some of the costs.

You know that it’s a loving world when people can open their hearts to others. Planning to adopt internationally helps so many people to make that connection and build the families they never had.

India is a great place to search for that connection. So many children are in need and are ready to find their forever homes. If you are wanting to adopt a child internationally then we hope you will consider India as one of your top choices.

Even though India is one of the newer countries to join the Hague adoption Convention, it is sometimes the newest countries who have more relaxed rules and regulations. While India does have rules for eligibility, they are no more extreme than other countries, and less strict than China.


Let’s take a look at a few of the rules involved with international adoption from India:

  • Age requirements
  • Citizenship requirements
  • Marriage requirements
  • Children at home

India’s Age Requirements

Married couples must be between the ages of 25 and 55 with no less than 25 years between the parents and child. If single you must be between the ages of 30 and 55 in order to adopt a child from India.

Citizenship Requirements

If you are considering an adoption from India you must first be a U.S. Citizen.

It can help if one of the parents is from India but living in America and can apply for a heritage adoption. (Showing Indian Heritage)

Marriage Requirements

To adopt a child internationally in India, if married, you must have proof of being married for at least 2 years. If it is your second marriage you must be married for at least 3 years.

Children at Home

An adopting parent is allowed no more than 2 children at home if you’re adopting from India. The only exceptions being on whether the family is open to a special needs child and only then would be considered for a bigger family.

Things to Know When Adopting a Child from India

We’ve put together a quick resource for those of you who are just starting out the information gathering process for international adoption. These are a few words and terms to get familiar with as well as tips on the India adoption process.

Terms to get familiar with:

Sending CountryThe country from where you will be adopting
Receiving CountryThe country where the parents live
Intercountry AdoptionAlso known as International Adoption
Country FeeThe fee charged by the sending country

A few tips to get acquainted with:

✔ Start the document process early
✔ Do as much research on India as possible
✔ Make sure to record everything you do
✔ Research travel arrangements to India beforehand

India is a great place to travel to, great food, rich in culture and tradition. You will want to educate yourself on their customs and culture so that you can better connect with the people and to better understand your where your child comes from.

Traveling in India can be dangerous so you must always be vigilant and safe. You should practice extreme caution whenever traveling out of the country.

This is where doing your due diligence with research will help navigate through their country and laws.

It’s an amazing thing to adopt a child, and we know that you will do all that you can to provide comfort when escorting your new child home to the U.S.

What are some of the Costs of Adopting a Child from India?

International adoption is not cheap and raising a child or children as many parents know can be financially difficult. You must make sure before starting the process that you have all the funds that are needed for travel, schooling, and raising your new child.

Here are some of the fees that are involved in international adoption.

Adoption ApplicationThe Home Study
Dossier CostsCountr Fee
Travel CostsPost Adoption Costs
Legal FeesGovernment Fees

You are also going to need to go through the steps of obtaining a Visa for your new child and contact immigration to start the process to make them a U.S. citizen.

One of the first steps of the adoption process is to start putting together all of the documents you need.

By this point in the research you have probably already decided on India as your sending country.

Now you should start getting some of the preadoption steps out of the way here is a shortlist of those steps.

  1. Background Check
  2. FBI Fingerprinting
  3. Visa information
  4. Financial Records
  5. Medical Records

Background Check

You will need to get a government background check. Anyone wishing to adopt a child internationally must get a background check and be cleared to adopt internationally.

You will need to have a clean record with no criminal history. If you do have something on your record from a long time ago that may not qualify as being something that will hold you back don’t worry just be honest and get it out of the way.

FBI Fingerprinting

As part of the clearance to adopt international and with the background check, you will also be fingerprinted by the FBI. They must make sure you are who you say you are and that you will not be putting any child in danger.

Visa and Immigration

Start getting your documents together for the child’s visa and Immigration process, getting things like this out of the way beforehand can help speed up the process.

Financial Records

You will need to get all your financial documents in order, including your proof of income from an employer as well as your total net worth. They must be able to validate that you have the funds to raise a child.

Medical Records

Another thing that you must prove is that you are physically able to raise a child. You will need to gather all of your medical information as well as get a physical from a doctor before leaving the country.


What Makes Someone Want to Give Up on the Process?

There are many things that can set you back on your journey to adopt a child internationally.

The entire process takes months to years to complete and can drain a person’s energy and cause them to have doubts.

Be strong, you need to be strong for yourself and for the child that you wish to adopt. The world is full of obstacles that will set you back. You have to persevere and keep moving.

It helps to get a lot of the leg work done early on. You should also record the entire process so that if you get hung up you can see where the problem is.

A lot of the time the adoption agency will be able to help you with any setbacks you have, it might just be one document that wasn’t received or filled out correctly. Don’t let things like this disparage you, you got this.

A list of some of the things that can go wrong:

  • You may have something on your criminal record
  • There might be a waiting list that can take time
  • You might have to do some fundraising to afford the process
  • You may have been set on a child but their paperwork didn’t clear

If you have something on your criminal record the best policy is to just be honest about it. It doesn’t mean that you will not be cleared for the adoption, so don’t let that stop you before you start.

Waiting lists are common for international adoption and the process overall takes time. Stick to your guns and make it through all of the steps and you will be able to get through it.

Sometimes people might be able to prove income and have money put back but it still is not enough to cover all of the costs for travel.

This would be a good time to familiarize yourself with fundraising options.

You must do the research to work through any problems that might come up. The more research you do before you start the project the more suited for the long haul you will be.

Have reasonable expectations and know that things may not always go the exact way you had envisioned.

Some Ways to Raise Funds for International Adoption

India is one of the cheaper of the countries to adopt from, but you may still need some assistance. Here are a few options for fundraising.

Friends and Family

Friends and family can be one of the best ways to raise the funds for adopting a child from India. Start with those who are close and let them know what you are trying to achieve.

Most likely they will be supportive and will want to help aid you on your new journey to becoming a parent!

Do the Financial Research

This is very important. You need to be able to prove that your monthly income, as well as, your overall net worth, can cover the adoption costs as well as raising the child, feeding them, and schooling them.

Make sure beforehand that you know exactly what you’re up against and that you can make this process work.

Personal loans

One way to get the funds is to apply for a personal loan. You do not want to get too much in debt so make sure that your proof of income also covers the ability to pay back any money you borrow over time.

Adoption Grants

There are also grants out there to help families who wish to adopt. They sometimes come with stipulations such as being married or being Christian. A lot of the organizations that offer grants are Christian organizations.

Fundraising for Adoptions

Fundraising is an age-old way of coming up with the money for big moments such as adoption. There are many ways to go about it, including donations, BBQ events, raffle tickets, and more.

Charities that can Help

There are a lot of charities that specialize in helping foster children find homes, even internationally. Reach out to whatever charity is local to you and see what kinds of loans or grants they can offer.

Fundraising can be a great help in raising the travel costs, but you must also prove that you have the money to raise children. So keep that in mind when getting your financial budget together.

A Closer Look at the Adoption Fees

As mentioned before the different fees when completing the adoption process can come from multiple parts of the process.

They are completed through different agencies, including the U.S. government, the adoption agency, and the government fees of the sending country and other fees and costs.

Let’s take a closer look at these.

The Adoption Application

The adoption application has a fee and is usually one of the first fees that you will pay to start the process.

The Home Study

The home study has different sets of costs, from paying the social worker to the adoption agency and paperwork.  The visit can sometimes take multiple visits and the costs can go up a small amount.

The Adoption Dossier

When doing an international adoption from India you will have a set of documents that you must pay to file. There is also information gathered by the social worker that will all go into one big file called a dossier.

The Country Fee

Every sending country charges a government fee for processing the adoption, India has reasonable fees and the process is straight forward.

The Travel Fees

You must visit India to meet your child, his contacts, and then escort the child with a Visa back to the U.S. to start the immigration process. These fees including, transportation, lodging, food and more.

Post Placement Costs

After you complete the adoption and the child has returned with you, a social worker will visit your home again, to check on the environment and the well being of your new child! As well as your ability to handle the new adjustments.

The Legal Fees

There are multiple legal fees that come along with an international adoption, you will want to contact a lawyer specializing in international adoption.

 It’s better to have a specialized lawyer that can get you the legal paperwork needed faster than someone who is outside of their field.

Government Fees

You must also pay fees from the U.S. government for filing documents, the child’s Visa and other immigration paperwork.

Better Adoption Resource.

Concerns when Traveling to Another Country Such as India

India is a beautiful place, but it has also been labeled a hotspot for terrorism and crime. Stay on your toes when traveling to any foreign country. Make sure that you research everything from the currency you will be using, to who you will be used for transportation and lodging.

Don’t use any shady vendors and make sure you always keep your passport and valuables close to you and safe.

Don’t be too flashy when traveling, dress comfortably and casual. There is no need to bring more than you need, having too much jewelry and other valuables with you could draw attention to criminals.

Have your eyes open at all times, when traveling with your new child make  sure that they are always in your line of sight and once they are with you never leave them alone with anyone that you do not know personally.

A Family Adopts From India

Some Final Thoughts on International Adoption from India

You are considering a huge change in your life and we are here to support that cause. Adopting children internationally brings happiness to so many lives around the world.

You are setting out on a long journey so make sure that you are in this for the long-haul.

Be confident in your choice and move forward knowing you have all the information you need. Do as much research as you possibly can on the ins and outs of international adoptions.

Children that are available for adoption in India are from 5 – 15 years of age and if you are considering a special needs child, 2 – 15 years of age.

Some Related Questions

Can both boys and girls be adopted from India?

Yes, both boys and girls can be adopted from India and parents may request a gender.

Adopting siblings is also sometimes an option in India.

What is the approximate cost for adopting internationally from India?

You should expect to pay around $15 – $30,000 for an adoption from India. This can include travel but sometimes it does not, so make sure that you get all the details from the adoption agency that you choose.

Chad Kilpatrick

A freelance writer passionate about adoption and helping to find children in need a forever home.

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