Ukraine: Limited Resumption of Intercountry Adoption during Martial Law

Last Updated: February 12, 2024

The Government of Ukraine continues to state that intercountry adoption will not fully resume while martial law is in place, or the three months following its cancellation.

The Government of Ukraine confirmed they will process intercountry adoptions in limited circumstances as provided by Decree No. 576 [Article 135]. The Ukrainian government considers the following persons eligible and issue referrals accordingly:

  1. Persons adopting a biological sibling (full or half-sibling) of a previously adopted child;
  2. Relatives of the prospective adoptive child [see the Civil Code of Ukraine, Articles 1262-63 and 1265 to understand who qualifies as a relative]; or
  3. Persons adopting their spouse’s child (stepparent adoption).

The Government of Ukraine will also process intercountry adoptions for persons who have already received an official referral from the National Social Service. Persons who have official referrals that qualify under this exception have received approval from the National Social Services of Ukraine (NSSU) to adopt. A referral includes having accepted an official match (this could be a blind referral of a child not already known, or the referral of a previously hosted child) issued by the NSSU.

If you believe your case is eligible to move forward under this exception, please contact your adoption service provider.

The Department of State is in regular contact with the Ukrainian Ministry of Social Policy, the National Social Service of Ukraine, and the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington, and we will continue to provide updates as they are available.