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Notice: U.S. Department of State Continues to Recommend Against Adopting from Nepal

While Nepal's adoption regulations, the Terms and Conditions and Process for Granting Approval for Adoption of Nepali Children by an Alien, 2008, permit Nepali authorized adoption service providers and foreign missions to submit dossiers on behalf of prospective adoptive parents, the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu cannot execute "cover letters" or submit dossier documents to the Ministry of Women and Child Social Welfare (MWCSW) on behalf of prospective adoptive parents or otherwise serve as a defacto adoption service provider for prospective adoptive parents.

The Nepali Ministry of Women and Child Social Welfare (MWCSW) informed the U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu that as of December 2012, there are seven U.S. adoption service providers authorized to facilitate adoptions in Nepal at this time, and another ten U.S. adoption service providers whose authorization is pending payment of a $5000 fee to the Nepal Child Right Fund.  According to the MWCSW, the authorization of all adoption service providers, including those currently authorized and those with pending authorization requests, expires on December 31, 2012.  The MWCSW is currently soliciting new or renewed accreditation by international adoption service providers for dossiers submitted during a two-year period beginning on January 1, 2013. 

Before embarking on an adoption in Nepal, prospective adoptive parents are strongly urged to confirm with the MWCSW that their adoption service provider is authorized to facilitate adoptions in Nepal.  Contact information for the MWCSW may be found on the Country Information Sheet for Nepal.  A copy of the MWCSW’s current list of Nepali authorized foreign adoption service providers may be obtained by writing to the U.S. Embassy at adoptionsnepal@state.gov

By way of background, on August 6, 2010, the U. S. Department of State and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) suspended processing of new adoption cases from Nepal involving children claimed to have been found abandoned because documents presented in support of the abandonment of these children in Nepal were unreliable.  Cases involving relinquishment by known birth parent(s) were not affected by the suspension.  In December 2011, the Government of Nepal informed the U.S. Department of State that there may be a small number of children who will be found eligible for intercountry adoption by the Government of Nepal as relinquishment cases.  The U.S. Department of State continues to strongly recommend that prospective adoptive parents refrain from adopting children from Nepal due to grave concerns about the reliability of Nepal’s adoption system and credible reports that children have been stolen from birth parents, who did not intend to irrevocably relinquish parental rights as required by INA 101(b)(1)(F).  We also strongly urge adoption service providers not to accept new applications for adoption from Nepal.

The U.S. Embassy in Kathmandu continues to encourage the Government of Nepal to work with the international community, including the Hague Permanent Bureau, to implement the Hague Adoption Convention and reform its adoption process to protect children and families. 

We will continue to keep you updated through adoption.state.gov as additional information is received.  This link will also provide additional information and past adoption notices and alerts on the detailed concerns found in Nepal adoptions.  Please refer to USCIS.gov for Special Instructions for How and When to File Adoption Petitions on Behalf of Nepali Children.