China Adoption: What You Need to Know

china adoption faq

America World is a China adoption agency that has assisted more than 3,000 families to bring their children home from China. America World has 25 years experience in China and has formed strong relationships with the China Center for Children's Welfare and Adoption (CCCWA), government officials, and orphanages.

Our Family Coordinators provide personal attention to every family through the entire adoption process. This personal attention continues on the adoption trip in China. Our in-country staff is with every America World family and is responsible for getting families to their required adoption appointments, guiding them on sightseeing tours, and making sure families' needs are taken care of through the entire trip. Our guides have even assisted families from other agencies who had no guidance from their agency.

Many of our families have stated that the travel in China was much like a vacation as our guides made sure everything went as smoothly as possible.

how much does it cost to adopt a child from China

China Adoption Details:

China Adoption Overview

China Adoption Requirements

China Adoption Cost (All-Inclusive)

How to Cover Adoption Costs

Adoption Myths & Truths

A Biblical Perspective on Adoption


Waiting Children: Older and Medical Needs Adoption

View America World China adoption photo listings of China Waiting Children who are ready for international adoption. You can request to view their profiles by visiting our Waiting Children web page. China Waiting Children are children of all ages who have corrected or uncorrected medical needs, or even older children (generally 8-13 years) with no known medical needs.

Families interested in learning more about a child may submit a free pre-application to America World to verify eligibility or to be given the approval to review a waiting child's complete file. Many of the children whose files become available in China for matching with families through a U.S.-based adoption agency are considered Waiting Children, due to their age and/or medical needs. While more children are adopted domestically in China, many continue waiting for a family. The wait time to be matched with a child through the Waiting Child is significantly shorter than wait times seen in the China program previously.

Steps To Adopt From China

The process of adopting a child from China is divided into three main steps.

China Adoption: Step 1 - Paperwork

The first stage of adoption in China involves assembling a collection of documents called a dossier. These documents must go through several levels of authentication by U.S. government offices so that they ultimately can be used as the legal framework for your adoption process. This stage is referred to as the "paper chase" or "paper pregnancy", and takes on average 4-6 months to complete. The finished dossier is mailed to America World where our China team carefully reviews it to ensure accuracy. Once approved, the dossier is forwarded to the China Center for Children’s Welfare and Adoption (CCCWA) for translation and processing. The CCCWA, or "Center" as it is sometimes called, is the federal agency which oversees all international adoption-related activities in China.

China Adoption: Step 2 - Waiting Stage

After your dossier is received by the CCCWA, you begin stage two of adoption in China, the waiting stage. The process of matching a family with a child is called the referral process. The wait time for a referral varies—please check our blog for the most up-to-date trends. The referral is comprised of several photos, a medical profile, a brief biography of the child’s life, a developmental and social report, as well as other general information. The waiting stage is a great time to do some research to prepare for welcoming your child home (China culture, bonding time with your adopted child, etc.), talk to adoptive families for tips and ideas, fundraise to help with adoption expenses, and prepare in general for your new addition.

China Adoption: Step 3 - Referral

Once you have accepted your referral, we begin planning the details of your travel, the third and final stage of your China adoption process. Our travel department will handle all of the details of your family’s travel. Families generally leave for China approximately 2-3 months after they receive a referral and stay in China for roughly two weeks to complete the China adoption process. While in China, families are united with their child, complete their adoption paperwork, and tour some of the country’s rich cultural sites. Typically, America World families arrive in Bejing and meet up with other America World families in their group (group sizes vary). Sightseeing with your America World guide is next on the agenda so that families can experience the rich culture of China to share with their child. Some of the places that our families visit are the Great Wall, Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace. After a day or two in Bejing, families travel to the province where their child is living, to meet them and begin the adoption procedures.

Single Parent Adoption From China

China is one country/program that allows for single women to adopt, and America World is pleased to have a long history of single women adopting a baby from China. There are some different requirements for single women adopting from China based on CCCWA specifications. All of these details are listed on our China Requirements page.

The staff at America World is trained to handle every detail of your international adoption process and one of our experienced staff members will be assigned to your family as soon as your application is approved. America World has been working with the CCCWA since China first opened its doors to international adoption in the early 1990s and have placed over 3,000 Chinese children in loving homes.

Be sure to visit our Financing Adoption page to learn how to reduce or eliminate your China adoption expenses!


CALL US!  800-429-3369

China Frequently Asked Questions