Single Parent Adoption
Can Singles Adopt Internationally?
The answer is "yes"! Each adoptive country determines the requirements for families adopting from their country to the U.S., but there certainly are countries that do allow single parents to adopt.
According to the ChildWelfare.gov website, in 2011, more than 13,000 single women adopted through the foster care system alone. Single parent families have become increasingly accepted throughout the country – and the same trends are holding true within the adoption community. In the last two decades, there has been a steady growth in the number of single-parent adoptions.
Some of the things all families need to consider when making the decision to adopt, but perhaps more so for singles:
- Support System - All parents need support, and for single parents, having a strong support system is even more critical. It is important to consider family and friends who would be able to help and provide you with some relief from time to time. There will be times when you will need help when you or your child is sick, someone to provide child care assistance or to pick up your child from school at times. A strong support system is very important to consider and will be discussed during your home study visits.
- Career Plans - More than likely, as a single parent, you will need to work. It is important to consider your work schedule as well as your future career goals. Does your employer offer a healthy work-life balance? What about health and/or adoption benefits? As a working single parent, think about how you will handle childcare while you’re at work, for after school, medical care and emergencies, job-related travel, your child’s extracurricular activities, and life events.
- Finances - You may be eligible for grants that can help cover some of your immediate adoption expenses. Additionally, most America World families fundraise for their adoptions and qualify for the Federal Adoption Tax Credit. However, once the adoption is complete, you'll be on your own. Planning ahead to support a child for the next 10 to 20 years is an important factor.
Single Adoption from China
Single women are eligible to adopt children of either gender from China. Applicants must be at least 30 years old at the time of dossier (paperwork for the adoption) submission but can apply to America World Adoption at the age of 29 ½ years. If a single applicant is over age 50, there must be no more than 50 years between the child and parent’s ages. For example, if the applicant is 53 years old, she would be eligible to pursue the adoption of a child ages 3 and above.
Single applicants must have no more than 2 children under the age of 18 living in the home and the youngest child must be at least 3 years old at the time of dossier submission. Building the dossier, completing a home study, and receiving immigration approval generally takes 6-8 months, so an applicant can begin the process when the youngest child in the home is not yet 3 years old.
Applicants must have an annual income of at least $30,000 plus an additional $10,000 for each child currently in the home as well as a minimum of $100,000 net worth. Applicants must be physically, mentally, and emotionally stable and without any life-threatening conditions outside of China’s eligibility guidelines.
Please contact our China Program staff to discuss any questions or situations unique to your family’s case. Many single women have successfully built their families by adopting children from China through America World. It would be our privilege to partner with you as you begin this exciting journey!
Single Adoption from India
Single women are welcome to adopt from India. Applicants must be between the ages of 30-55. Single applicants must be financially, physically, mentally and emotionally stable, and without any life-threatening conditions to meet India’s eligibility guidelines.
Many single women have successfully built their families by adopting children from India through America World and are eligible to adopt a child of any gender.
Single parents at least 30 years old but not older than 45 may adopt a child under 5.
To adopt a child, ages 5-8, a maximum of 50 years old and not older than 55 years of age for a child above the age of 8.
The minimum age difference between the child and the prospective adoptive parent shall not be less than 25 years.
Single Adoption from Haiti
Single women between 35 and 50 years old may adopt from Haiti. Prospective adoptive parents regardless of marital status must show through their home study and dossier documents that they have no criminal history and are financially, physically, and mentally capable of parenting an additional child or additional children.
No more than 2 divorces in a parent’s past are allowed. Haiti does not accept adoption applications from single men at this time.
Regardless of the marital status of the prospective adoptive parent, children available for adoption in Haiti range from toddlers up to 15-year-olds.
Healthy boys and girls are available for adoption, as well as many sibling groups.
There are also children with medical needs waiting for forever families. The most common need we see is HIV. Prospective parents interested in young children must be willing to consider a child at least up to the age of 60 months (5 years) at the time of referral.
Our adoption team would love to talk more with you about adopting as a single woman, the specific requirements for each country, and answer any questions you may have about beginning this exciting adoption process.
Contact us at Info@awaa.org or call us at 800-429-3369.