Travel.State.Gov > Intercountry Adoption > Country Information > Ukraine Intercountry Adoption Information
Do not travel to Ukraine due to Russia’s war against Ukraine. The Department of State continues to advise that U.S. citizens not travel to Ukraine due to active armed conflict. Read the entire Travel Advisory.
All U.S. citizens should carefully monitor U.S. government notices and local and international media outlets for information about changing security conditions and alerts to shelter in place. Those choosing to remain in Ukraine should exercise caution due to the potential for military attacks, crime, civil unrest, and consult the Department’s latest security alerts.
The security situation in Ukraine remains unpredictable. U.S. citizens in Ukraine should stay vigilant and take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness. Know the location of your closest shelter or protected space. In the event of mortar, missile, drone, or rocket fire, follow instructions from local authorities and seek shelter immediately. If you feel your current location is no longer safe, you should carefully assess the potential risks involved in moving to a different location.
There are continued reports of Russian forces and their proxies singling out U.S. citizens in Russian-occupied areas of Ukraine for detention, interrogation, or harassment because of their nationality. U.S. citizens have also been singled out when evacuating by land through Russia-occupied territory or to Russia or Belarus.
U.S. citizens seeking emergency assistance should email KyivACS@state.gov for assistance. Please review what the U.S. government can and cannot do to assist you in a crisis overseas. U.S. citizens may also seek consular services, including requests for repatriation loans, passports, and visa services, at U.S. embassies and consulates in neighboring countries.
On February 24, 2022, the Ukrainian government declared a state of emergency. Each province (oblast) decides on measures to be implemented according to local conditions. Measures could include curfews, restrictions on the freedom of movement, ID verification, and increased security inspections, among other measures. Follow any oblast-specific state of emergency measures.
Many in the international community, including the United States and Ukraine, do not recognize Russia’s purported annexation of Crimea in 2014, nor the September 2022 purported annexation of four other Ukrainian oblasts -- Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia. There is extensive Russian Federation military presence in these areas. There are also abuses against foreigners and the local population by the occupation authorities in these regions, particularly against those who are seen as challenging Russia’s occupation.
Although Russia’s ongoing war against Ukraine severely restricts the Embassy’s access and ability to provide services in these areas, the Department of State and the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv continue to remotely provide certain emergency consular services to U.S. citizens in Crimea as well as four other Ukrainian oblasts partially occupied by Russia – Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia – to the extent possible given security conditions.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a Notice to Air Missions (NOTAM) prohibiting U.S. aviation operations into, out of, within, or over Ukraine. For more information, U.S. citizens should consult the FAA’s Prohibitions, Restrictions, and Notices.
Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Ukraine.
Travel to High-Risk Areas
If you choose to disregard the Travel Advisory and travel to Ukraine, you should consider taking the following steps:
If you are currently in Ukraine:
Ukraine is not a party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention or Convention). However, under the Intercountry Adoption Universal Accreditation Act of 2012 (UAA), which became effective on July 14, 2014, the requirement that adoption service providers be accredited or approved, and therefore meet the accreditation standards applies in non-Convention (“orphan”) cases under section 101(b)(1)(F) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). The UAA requires that an accredited or approved adoption service provider act as the primary provider in every intercountry adoption case[RCA1] (unless a limited exception applies), and that adoption service providers providing any adoption services, as defined at 22 CFR Part 96.2, on behalf of prospective adoptive parents be accredited or approved, or be a supervised or exempted provider. See additional guidance for limited situations when a primary provider may not be required. Intercountry adoptions of children from non-Convention countries continue to be processed under the Orphan Process with the filing of the Forms I-600A and I-600. However, adoption service providers should be aware of the impact of the UAA on Form I-600A and Form I-600 adjudications, including the requirement that all home studies, including home study updates and amendments, comply with the home study requirements listed at 8 CFR 204.311. Please see the USCIS adoption webpages for more information about the orphan adoption process.
The Department of State occasionally receives inquiries from U.S. citizens concerned about the plight of children in Ukraine and the possibility of adopting them. We share this concern for children in conflict areas and understand that some U.S. citizens want to respond by offering to open their homes and adopt these children in need.
It can be extremely difficult in such circumstances to determine whether children who appear to be orphans truly are eligible for adoption. Children may be temporarily separated from their parents or other family members during a conflict or natural disaster, and their parents or relatives may be looking for them. It is not uncommon in a hostile situation for parents to send their children out of the area, or for families to become separated during an evacuation or natural disaster. Even when it can be demonstrated that children are indeed orphaned or abandoned, they often will be cared for by other relatives.
During times of crisis, it can also be exceptionally difficult to fulfill the legal requirements for adoption of both the United States and the child's country of origin. It can also be very difficult to gather documents necessary to fulfill the legal requirements of U.S. immigration law. Prospective adoptive parents may wish to consult with experienced immigration attorneys and to take extra caution when considering adopting or caring for a child under these circumstances.
On June 1, 2023, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine approved Resolution No. 576, which provides limited exceptions for foreign prospective adoptive parents to adopt while intercountry adoptions are suspended during martial law and for the first three months after revocation of martial law. Under these exceptions, the following persons may be eligible to adopt a child from Ukraine:
Please read Resolution No. 576, here.
If you believe you meet one of these requirements, please contact your ASP for more information.
Caution: Prospective adoptive parents should be aware not all children in orphanages or children’s homes are eligible for adoption. In many countries, birth parents place their child(ren) temporarily in an orphanage or children’s home due to financial or other hardship, intending the child return home when possible. In such cases, the birth parent(s) have rarely relinquished their parental rights or consented to the adoption of their child(ren).
UKRAINE’S ADOPTION AUTHORITY:
National Social Service of Ukraine
Ministry for Social Policy of Ukraine
8/10 Esplanadna Street, Kyiv 01601 Ukraine
Tel: (380)(44) 289-5539/5262
U.S. Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
For questions about a pending Form I-600A application, Form I-600 petition, or related supplements:
USCIS National Benefits Center (NBC)
Tel: 1-877-424-8374 (toll free); 1-913-275-5480 (local); Fax:1-913-214-5808
For general questions about immigration procedures:
USCIS Contact Center
1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833)
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