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International Travel

English

Country Information

Armenia

Country Information

Armenia
Republic of Armenia
Last Updated: October 4, 2017
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Embassy Messages

Yerevan

 

Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

Must be valid at time of entry

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

No requirement

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

None for U.S. Citizens staying for less than 180 days per year

VACCINATIONS:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

$10,000 USD

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

$10,000 USD

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Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Yerevan

1 American Avenue
Yerevan 0082, Republic of Armenia
Telephone: +(374) 10-464-700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(374) 10-494-444 and during
business hours (M-F 9am-5:30pm) +(374) 10-494-685
Fax: +(374) 10-464-742
Email: 

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Destination Description

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Armenia for more information on U.S.-Armenia relations.

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Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

You need a valid passport to enter Armenia. U.S. citizens are allowed visa-free entry to Armenia for up to 180 days per year. For visits of longer than 180 days, you must apply for a residency permit through the Armenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Visit the Embassy of Armenia’s website for the most current visa information.

  • Armenian legislation permits Armenian citizens to hold dual citizenship. Even if you naturalized in the United States, the Government of Armenia may still consider you an Armenian citizen. Children born in the United States to two Armenian citizens are also considered Armenian citizens. Please read the information about Armenian citizenship at the Embassy of Armenia’s website. Armenian citizens are subject to certain entry/exit and Armenian military service requirements. See the “Local Laws and Special Circumstances” section below.
  • If you are of Armenian descent and possess an Armenian “special passport,” you still need a valid U.S. passport to enter Armenia. Border guards have refused to admit U.S. citizens carrying “special passports” (a residency permit). Please visit the Embassy of Armenia website for further details.
  • Traveling to the region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding territories via Armenia could make you ineligible to travel to Azerbaijan in the future.
  • Engaging in commercial activities inside Nagorno-Karabakh can make it difficult to conduct business inside Azerbaijan or with the Government of Azerbaijan. For more information on commercial activities in Nagorno-Karabakh, please visit the Country Commercial Guide.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Armenia.

Find information on dual nationalityprevention of international child abduction, and customs on our websites.

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Safety and Security

Credible information indicates terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Europe. European governments are taking action to guard against terrorist attacks; however, all European countries remain potentially vulnerable to attacks from transnational terrorist organizations.

  • Avoid demonstrations. During the last presidential election, political rallies ended in violence and casualties. Recently, civic and political activists have been injured and detained.
  • Security messages regarding demonstrations and strikes, explosive devices/suspicious packages, and weather-related events can be found on the Embassy’s website.
  • Armenia is prone to earthquakes and landslides.
  • Land borders with Turkey and Azerbaijan remain closedand are patrolled by armed troops.

The Nagorno-Karabakh Area and Conflict

  • The U.S. Government is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Nagorno-Karabakh.
  • Casualties continue to occur in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Avoid traveling near the line of contact between the conflicting parties. Despite the declaration of a cessation in hostilities, intermittent gunfire and use of heavy weaponry including landmines and mortars continue. Landmines result in a handful of deaths and injuries each year near the conflict zones.

Crime: Crime is relatively low, and violent crime is sporadic. Vehicle break-ins and theft are the most common crimes. Police indicate that there is a criminal group in Yerevan that targets foreigners and burglarizes rented apartments when the victims are away. When police are called they routinely show up.

  • U.S. investors report involvement in property ownership disputes and have sought legal recourse through long, often unsuccessful, court proceedings. The U.S.-Armenia Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) provides that in the event of a dispute between an American investor and the Republic of Armenia, the investor may take the case to international arbitration.
  • Credit card fraud and ATM card skimming occurs.

See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information on scams.

Victims of Crime: Report crimes and all requests for emergency services by dialing 911 where English speaking operators are available. Also contact the U.S. Embassy at (+374) 10-464-700 to report your situation.

Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • Explain the local criminal justice process in general terms
  • Provide a list of local attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the United States
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport

Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the Embassy for assistance. Local resources for victims of domestic violence include shelters, medical assistance, and legal aid. Victims of domestic violence may contact the Women’s Rights Center at + (374) 10-542-828 or (0800) 80-850, 24 hours a day. Other resources include the Women’s Support Center at + (374) 099-887-808, and the Light House shelter at + (374) 93-327-834; + (374) 43-500-503 or “20-80”, preferably during business hours because of lack of fluent English speakers. In case of sexual violence, victims may contact the Women’s Resource Center at + (374) 077-991-280 and (0800) 01-280, from 9:00 AM to midnight.

For further information:

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Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate them, even unknowingly, you may be arrested or imprisoned.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the U.S., regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Please review the State Department’s page on Arrests or Detention of U.S Citizens Abroad. In addition, many people accused of crimes are held in local prisons in pre-trial detention for between two and twelve months without the possibility of posting bail while waiting for a court hearing.

Possession, trafficking, or the uses of drugs, including marijuana, are illegal. A prescription for medical marijuana may not protect you from prosecution. If you are arrested for a drug offense, you could face detention during the investigation and a prison sentence after conviction. There have been recent cases where electronic cigarettes and related paraphernalia have been perceived as drug related. In these cases, arrestees often have been held without bail until forensic tests clear them.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.

  • Some local officials seek bribes to perform basic duties.
  • Customs authorities may enforce regulations concerning the import/export of items like firearms, pornography, and communications equipment. Please refer to the Armenian Customs Service website for further information.
  • The export of items of historical value, such as paintings, carpets, and old books, requires advanced authorization from the Armenian Ministry of Culture. Contact the Embassy of Armenia for further information.

Dual nationals: Armenian legislation permits Armenian citizens to hold dual citizenship. Even if you naturalized in the United States, the Government of Armenia may still consider you an Armenian citizen. Children born in the United States to two Armenian citizens are also considered Armenian citizens. Please read the Armenian Law on Citizenship.

  • Armenian law requires that Armenian citizens enter and depart Armenia on Armenian passports. Individuals who are dual citizens, or could be, should consult with the Armenian Embassy in Washington prior to traveling.
  • Armenian males over the age of 18 are subject to mandatory military service. Penalties for evading military service include jail time and a substantial fine. Young dual citizen U.S.-Armenian men are advised to consult with the Armenian embassy prior to traveling. There have been instances where dual nationals have been detained at the airport upon arrival until they can resolve their military service issues. 

Faith-Based Travelers: See our following webpages for details:

LGBTI Travelers: There are no antidiscrimination laws protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) individuals in Armenia. There are no hate crime laws or other criminal judicial mechanisms to aid in the prosecution of crimes against members of the LGBTI community. Because of commonly-held negative stereotypes, LGBTI individuals face the potential of discrimination and harassment by state and private actors. The Department of State’s 2016 Human Rights Report documents that both politicians and the media engaged in “hate speech” toward members of the LGBTI community in Armenia, and that members of the LGBTI community experienced physical violence, threats of violence, blackmail, and harassment. Police were unresponsive to reports of abuses against the LGBTI community and at times, themselves mistreated LGBTI persons.

See our LGBTI travel information page and section six of our Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: Although Armenia signed the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2007, Armenian authorities have yet to enforce it. Facilities with accommodations for individuals with disabilities are nonexistent.

Students: See our students abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: Informal taxis or mini-buses pose particular threats to people unfamiliar with local conditions, especially to women traveling alone. Find out from reliable sources, such as local authorities or tourism officials, what is and is not safe. See our travel tips for women travelers

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Health

Outside major cities, medical facilities in Armenia are limited. Medical emergency services at Armenian airports are not on par with U.S. airports. The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of English-speaking doctors. Elderly travelers and those with existing health problems may be at risk from inadequate medical facilities.

We have received reports of cases of brucellosis from unpasteurized dairy products.

We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare does not apply overseas.

Most prescription medications are available, but quality varies. Armenian customs officials have sometimes confiscated medication from travelers upon arrival.

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

  • We strongly recommend supplemental insurance (our webpage) to cover medical evacuation.
  • If traveling with prescription medication, check with the government of Armenia to ensure the medication is legal in Armenia. Always, carry your prescription medication in its original packaging with your doctor’s prescription. 

Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

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Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: The information below is provided for general reference only. Road conditions in Armenia differ significantly from those in the United States. Exercise caution when driving in Armenia. Reckless driving is common. Drivers frequently ignore traffic laws.

  • Avoid traveling at night due to poor road conditions and limited emergency response resources. Pedestrians often cross dark streets away from designated pedestrian crossings while wearing dark clothing. U.S. Embassy employees are prohibited from driving at night outside the city limits of Yerevan.
  • Yield to aggressive drivers to reduce your risk of being a victim of aggression. Though crime along roadways is rare, police are known to seek bribes during traffic stops and harass drivers using U.S. or international driver’s licenses.
  • Winter travel can also be hazardous, especially in mountainous areas.
  • Avoid roads near the line of contact with Azerbaijan. Villages and their connecting border roads in this area include, but are not limited to: Dovegh, Barekamavan, Berkaber, Azatamut, Vazashen, Varagavan, Paravakar, Aygepar, Azatamut, and Chinari. U.S. Embassy employees are restricted from traveling in these areas. (The Line of Contact restrictions for U.S. Embassy employees are roughly a line from Haghtanak to Berd to Aygedzor. The towns listed and anything east are restricted to U.S. Embassy employees).
  • Watch out for drunk drivers, especially on the weekends. Be extra careful on the main highway from Yerevan to the resort areas of Tsaghkadzor and Sevan.
  • Primary roads are frequently in poor condition with stretches of missing pavement and large potholes. Some roads shown as primary roads on maps are unpaved and can narrow to one lane. Maps may be inaccurate.
  • Secondary roads are normally in poor condition and are often unpaved. Roads may not have signs. Police and emergency medical services may take a long time to reach remote regions.
  • Gasoline quality ranges from good at reliable stations in cities to very poor. Do not buy gasoline and other fuels sold out of jars, barrels, and trucks by roadside merchants.

Public Transportation: Public transportation, while inexpensive, may be unreliable and uncomfortable. Sexual assaults have often been reported on public transportation. Minibuses are dangerous, overcrowded, poorly maintained, lack seatbelts, and are frequently involved in accidents. Traveling by local unregistered taxis without meters can also prove difficult if a price is not agreed to ahead of time.

See our road safety webpage for more information. Visit the website of Armenia’s national tourist office website and national authority responsible for road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Armenia, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Armenia’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Hague Convention Participation
Party to the Hague Abduction Convention?
Yes
U.S. Treaty Partner under the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
What You Can Do
Learn how to respond to abductions FROM the US
Learn how to respond to abductions TO the US
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Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Yerevan

1 American Avenue
Yerevan 0082, Republic of Armenia
Telephone: +(374) 10-464-700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(374) 10-494-444 and during
business hours (M-F 9am-5:30pm) +(374) 10-494-685
Fax: +(374) 10-464-742
Email: 

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General Information

For information concerning travel to Armenia, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, entry/exit requirements, safety and security, crime, medical facilities and health information, traffic safety, road conditions and aviation safety, please see country-specific information for Armenia. 

The U.S. Department of State reports statistics and compliance information for individual countries in the Annual Report on International Parental Child Abduction (IPCA).  The report is located here.

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Hague Abduction Convention

Armenia acceded to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Abduction Convention) on June 1, 2007, however, the United States and Armenia are not yet treaty partners.  Until Armenia and the United States establish a treaty relationship per Article 38 of the Convention, parents whose children have been abducted from the United States to Armenia or wrongfully retained in Armenia are unable to invoke the Hague Abduction Convention to pursue their children’s return or to seek access to them.

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Return

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  The government of Armenia maintains information about custody, visitation, and family law on the internet here. Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Armenia and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.  

Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Armenia and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.

The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs, Directorate for Overseas Citizens Services, Office of Children’s Issues provides assistance in cases of international parental child abduction.  For U.S. citizen parents whose children have been wrongfully removed to or retained in countries that are not U.S. partners under the Hague Abduction Convention, the Office of Children’s Issues can provide information and resources about country-specific options for pursuing the return of or access to an abducted child.  The Office of Children’s Issues may also coordinate with appropriate foreign and U.S. government authorities about the welfare of abducted U.S. citizen children.  Parents are strongly encouraged to contact the Department of State for assistance.

Contact information:

U.S. Department of State
CA/OCS/CI
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Telephone:  1-888-407-4747
Outside the United States or Canada: 1-202-501-4444
Website: travel.state.gov/

Email: AskCI@state.gov 

Parental child abduction is a crime in Armenia.  In Armenia, one of the parents may leave with a child without asking the permission of the other. However, it can be considered “wrongful” if such action interferes with the normal exercise of parental rights of the other parent arising from a judicial or administrative decision having legal effect under Armenian law.  

Parents may wish to consult with an attorney in the United States and in Armenia to learn more about how filing criminal charges may impact a custody case in the foreign court.  Please see Possible Solutions - Pressing Criminal Charges for more information.  

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Visitation/Access

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Armenia and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.

The Office of Children’s Issues may be able to assist parents seeking access to children who have been wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States.  Parents who are seeking access to children who were not wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States should contact the appropriate U.S. Embassy in Armenia for information and possible assistance. Contact information for the American Citizens Services unit is (374-10) 49-46-86, fax number (374-10) 46-47-37; email: acsyerevan@state.gov.  

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Retaining an Attorney

Neither the Office of Children’s Issues nor consular officials at the U.S. Embassy in Armenia are authorized to provide legal advice.

The U.S. Embassy in Yerevan, Armenia, posts a list of attorneys,including those who specialize in family law.

This list is provided as a courtesy service only and does not constitute an endorsement of any individual attorney. The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the persons or firms included in this list. Professional credentials and areas of expertise are provided directly by the lawyers.

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Mediation

We are unaware of any Mediation services available in Armenia at this time.

Exercising Custody Rights

While travelling in a foreign country, you are subject to the laws of that country. It is important for parents to understand that, although a left-behind parent in the United States may have custody or visitation rights pursuant to a U.S. custody order, that order may not be valid and enforceable in the country in which the child is located.  For this reason, we strongly encourage you to speak to a local attorney if planning to remove a child from a foreign country without the consent of the other parent.  Attempts to remove your child to the United States may:

  • Endanger your child and others;
  • Prejudice any future judicial efforts; and
  • Could result in your arrest and imprisonment.

The U.S. government cannot interfere with another country’s court or law enforcement system.

To understand the legal effect of a U.S. order in a foreign country, a parent should consult with a local attorney in the country in which the child is located.  

For information about hiring an attorney abroad, see our section on Retaining a Foreign Attorney. 

Although we cannot recommend an attorney to you, most U.S. Embassies have lists of attorneys available online. Please visit the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate website for a full listing.

For more information on consular assistance for U.S. citizens arrested abroad, please see our website.

Country officers are available to speak with you Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  For assistance with an abduction in progress or any emergency situation that occurs after normal business hours, on weekends, or federal holidays, please call toll free at 1-888-407-4747. See all contact information.

DISCLAIMER: The information in this flyer is provided for general information only, is not intended to be legal advice, and may change without notice. Questions involving interpretation of law should be addressed to an attorney licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. 

 

Hague Convention Participation
Hague Adoption Convention Country?
Yes
Are Intercountry Adoptions between this country and the United States possible?
Is this country a U.S. Hague Partner?
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Hague Convention Information

Armenia is party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention). Therefore all adoptions between Armenia and the United States must meet the requirements of the Convention and U.S. law implementing the Convention.

Note: Special transition provisions apply to adoptions initiated before April 1, 2008. Learn more.

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Who Can Adopt

Adoption between the United States and Armenia is governed by the Hague Adoption Convention. Therefore to adopt from Armenia, you must first be found eligible to adopt by the U.S. Government. The U.S. Government agency responsible for making this determination is the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Learn more

In addition to these U.S. requirements for prospective adoptive parents, Armenia also has the following requirements for prospective adoptive parents:

  • Residency Requirements: Prospective adoptive parents do not have to fulfill any residency requirements to adopt in Armenia.
  • Age Requirements: Single prospective adoptive parents must be at least 18 years older than the adopted child.
  • Marriage Requirements: Both single individuals and married couples are eligible to adopt.
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Who Can Be Adopted

Because Armenia is party to the Hague Adoption Convention, children from Armenia must meet the requirements of the Convention in order to be eligible for adoption. For example, the Convention requires that Armenia attempt to place a child with a family in-country before determining that a child is eligible for intercountry adoption. In addition to Armenia's requirements, a child must meet the definition of a Convention adoptee for you to bring him or her back to the United States.

Learn more about the Convention's requirements for adoptable children.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

There are many children living in orphanages, however, ONLY those children whose parents have died, disappeared, or signed a statement of relinquishment of their parental rights, and whose families do not visit them, thus abandoning them, are available for adoption. In addition, consent for child adoption can only be given after the birth of the child.

  • Reliquishment Requirements: If biological parents are alive, the biological parents must sign a statement of relinquishment in order for a child to be eligible for adoption.
  • Abandonment Requirements: A child's name must be listed on the national registry list for three months before he or she is declared available for intercountry adoption. For this reason, it is impossible to adopt a very young infant from Armenia.
  • Waiting Period: The names of children available for adoption are listed by the Ministry of Labor and Social Issues. A child's name must remain on the list for three months before he/she is declared available for intercountry adoption.
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How to Adopt

ARMENIA'S ADOPTION AUTHORITY

National Adoption Committee of the Republic of Armenia

THE PROCESS

Because Armenia is party to the Hague Adoption Convention, adopting from Armenia must follow a specific process designed to meet the Convention's requirements. A brief summary of the Convention adoption process is given below. You must complete these steps in the following order so that your adoption meets all necessary legal requirements.

Note: If you filed your I-600a with Armenia before April 1, 2008, the Hague Adoption Convention may not apply to your adoption. Your adoption could continue to be processed in accordance with the immigration regulations for non-Convention adoptions. Learn more.

  1. Choose an Accredited Adoption Service Provider
  2. Apply to be Found Eligible to Adopt
  3. Be Matched with a Child
  4. Apply for the Child to be Found Eligible for Immigration to the United States
  5. Adopt the Child in Armenia
  6. Bring your Child Home
  1. Choose an Accredited Adoption Service Provider

    The first step in adopting a child from Armenia is to select an adoption service provider in the United States that has been accredited. Only these agencies and attorneys can provide adoption services between the United States and Armenia. Learn more.

    Please note that Armenian law does not recognize the involvement of professional facilitators, adoption agencies or attorneys; it allows the prospective parents to grant power of attorney to an individual to handle most aspects of the adoption process on their behalf. Some U.S. adoption agencies have contacts with experienced local individuals who can be given power of attorney. In many cases, prospective parents grant this power of attorney to individuals whom they trust, relatives, friends or acquaintances.

  2. Apply to be Found Eligible to Adopt

    After you choose an accredited adoption service provider, you apply to be found eligible to adopt (Form I-800A) by the U.S. Government, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Learn how.

    Once the U.S. Government determines that you are "eligible" and "suitable" to adopt, you or your agency will forward your information to the adoption authority in Armenia. Armenia's adoption authority will review your application to determine whether you are also eligible to adopt under Armenia's law.

    The National Adoption Committee has one month in which to conduct a study and issue a conclusion on the ability to adopt. That conclusion is valid for one year. Once the National Adoption Committee grants the permission to adopt, the adoptive parents may identify a child, from the children eligible for inter-country adoption listed in the registry kept by the Ministry of Labor and Social Issues.

  3. Be Matched with a Child

    If both the United States and Armenia determine that you are eligible to adopt, and a child is available for intercountry adoption, the central adoption authority in Armenia may provide you with a referral for a child. Each family must decide for itself whether or not it will be able to meet the needs of the particular child and provide a permanent family placement for the referred child. Learn more about this critical decision. In Armenia, the adoptive parents identify a child from the children eligible for inter-country adoption listed in the registry kept by the Ministry of Labor and Social Issues. The prospective parents or their representative may go to the Ministry and view the list, or they may visit orphanages directly and identify a child. Once they identify a child, they must verify his/her status by reviewing the list.

    Once the child has been identified, the prospective parents or their representative must submit their documents to the municipality in which the child resides. Once those documents are received, a court date is set. Please see Documents Required in #5 of this section.

    Prospective adoptive parents and the child (if over 14) must be present for court proceedings.

  4. Apply for the Child to be Found Eligible for Adoption

    After you accept a match with a child, you will apply to the U.S Government, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for provisional approval to adopt that particular child (Form I-800). USCIS will determine whether the child is eligible under U.S. law to be adopted and enter the United States. Learn how.

    After this, your adoption service provider or you will submit a visa application to a Consular Officer at the U.S. Embassy. The Consular Officer will review the child's information and evaluate the child for possible visa ineligibilities. If the Consular Office determines that the child appears eligible to immigrate to the United States, he/she will notify Armenia's adoption authority (Article 5 letter). For Convention country adoptions, prospective adoptive parent(s) may not proceed with the adoption or obtain custody for the purpose of adoption until this takes place.

    Remember: The Consular Officer will make a final decision about the immigrant visa later in the adoption process. 

    Adoptive parents and the child, if over 14, must be present for court proceedings. The court may request the presence of biological parents, orphanage representatives, or the child if the child is over the age of 10. The court proceedings are closed to the public.

    Cases may be rejected on the basis of incomplete or fraudulent paperwork, among other issues addressed in Armenian law. Prospective adoptive parents may be disqualified based on mental disease, drug addiction, alcoholism, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, or other infectious diseases.

    If any party wishes to cancel the adoption proceedings, that request will be adjudicated by the regular dispute court in Armenia.

  5. Adopt the Child (or Gain Legal Custody) in Armenia

    Remember: Before you adopt (or gain legal custody of) a child in Armenia, you must have completed the above four steps. Only after completing these steps, can you proceed to finalize the adoption or grant of custody for the purposes of adoption in Armenia.

    The process for finalizing the adoption (or gaining legal custody) in Armenia generally includes the following:

    • Role of The Adoption Authority: The National Adoption Committee reviews the prospective adoptive parents' registration documents and issues a conclusion on the ability to adopt.
    • Role of The Court: Once the child has been identified and the remaining documents are submitted, a court date is set. During the hearing, the judge makes decisions on any requests to change the child's name, birth date, etc. After the hearing, the court will issue a preliminary decision and 30 days later the Government registers the final court decision.

      If any party wishes to cancel the adoption proceedings, that request will be adjudicated by the regular dispute court in Armenia.
    • Role of Adoption Agencies: Armenian law does not recognize the involvement of professional facilitators, adoption agencies, or attorneys. It does allow prospective adoptive parents to grant power of attorney to an individual to handle most aspects of the adoption process on their behalf. Some U.S. adoption agencies have contacts with experienced local individuals who can be given power of attorney.
    • Time Frame: From start to finish, an adoption timeframe of one to two years is common. Once approval to adopt has been granted, it can take up to six months to identify a child and several more months to secure the proper paperwork from the different Government agencies to support an application to adopt that particular child.
    • Adoption Application: The prospective adoptive parents submit the adoption application to the National Adoption Committee.
    • Adoption Fee: The official fees necessary to procure the documents needed in support of the adoption are approximately $65 USD. The practice of charging official and unofficial expediting fees varies depending on the particular Government agency or local office. In addition, the attorneys or other individuals assisting the prospective adoptive parents with the adoption may charge fees for services rendered.

      In the adoption services contract that you sign at the beginning of the adoption process, your agency will itemize the fees and estimated expenses related to your adoption process. Learn more.
    • Documents Required: Please note that fraud is pervasive in Armenia. Fabricated documents or real documents fraudulently obtained are readily available. As a result, the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan must carefully investigate all visa cases. In adoptions it must be clearly determined whether the child meets the requirements under U.S. immigration law. The need for investigation may delay the issuance of the visa for the adopted child to travel to the United States. Cases deemed not clearly approvable by the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan will be referred to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in Moscow for review.

      The following is a list of documents required to request registration as prospective adoptive parents:
      • Copy of the prospective adoptive parents' U.S. passports
      • USCIS approval (either of the Form I-600A in a transition case or the Form I-800A in a new case)
      • Copy of certificate of home study, including a description of the family and the home where the adopted child will reside
      • Work verification letters indicating position, salary, and three letters of reference
      • Tax return for the most recent tax year
      • Copy of marriage certificate, if applicable
      • Copy of divorce decree, or spouse's death certificate, if applicable
      • Spousal consent (if only one spouse is legally adopting the child)
      • Medical evaluation report confirming that the prospective adoptive parent(s) do not suffer from any type of psychological condition, alcoholism or drug abuse, HIV AIDS or other STD, active tuberculosis or other infectious diseases
      • Local police check for prospective adoptive parents
      • Power of Attorney if documents will be submitted through an authorized representative
      • The following is a list of documents that must be submitted to the regional court presiding over the child's district:
      • Full names of the prospective adoptive parent(s) and child
      • Notification of prospective adoptive parents' plans to change the child's name, date or place of birth, or to list themselves as parents on new documents
      • Prospective adoptive parents' passports or other identification
      • Prospective adoptive parents' marriage certificate, if applicable
      • Spousal consent (if married and only one spouse is legally adopting the child)
      • Child's consent if the child is over 10 years of age
      • Child's birth certificate and medical records
      • Statement of child's centralized registration from the Ministry of Social Security
      • Written consent of adoptive parents, birth parents, and the orphanage. If applicable, death certificates of birth parents and consent of biological grandparents if the biological parents are not legal adults.
      • Government approval of prospective adoptive parents

    Note: Additional documents may be requested. If you are asked to provide proof that a document from the United States is authentic, we can help. Learn how.

  6. Bringing Your Child Home

    Now that your adoption is complete (or you have obtained legal custody of the child), there are a few more steps to take before you can head home. Specifically, you need to apply for several documents for your child before he or she can travel to the United States:

    • Birth Certificate 
      You will first need to apply for a new birth certificate for your child, so that you can later apply for a passport. Your name will be added to the new birth certificate.

      Adoptive parents may obtain the child's new birth certificate at the local registration office (ZAGS) of the child's municipality.

    • Armenian Passport 
      Your child is not yet a U.S. citizen, so he/she will need a travel document or Passport from Armenia.

      Adoptive parents must visit the Armenian passport agency, the OVIR, to obtain an Armenian passport for the child. The child must have a passport before the visa interview at the U.S. Embassy.

      Also, before the adoptive parents depart Armenia with their new son or daughter, they must visit the Notarial Office of the Ministry of Justice to get all of the new documents certified with an apostille. This is required for departing the country.

    • U.S. Immigrant Visa 
      After you obtain the new birth certificate and passport for your child, you also need to apply for an U.S. visa from the United States Embassy for your child. After the adoption (or custody for purpose of adoption) is granted, visit the U.S Embassy for final review and approval of the child's I-800 petition and to obtain a visa for the child. This immigrant visa allows your child to travel home with you. As part of this process, the Consular Officer must be provided the "Panel Physician's" medical report on the child if it was not provided during the provisional approval stage. Learn more

      Adoptive parents must schedule an appointment at the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan to file the I-600 (in transition cases), have an orphan investigation interview, and to apply for an immigrant visa. NOTE: In new cases, adoptive parents must file the I-800 with USCIS BEFORE the adoption is final. In some cases further investigation may be required to determine whether the adopted child meets the definition of orphan under U.S. law. Parents should not make final, non-refundable travel plans for return to the United States until they have their child's immigrant visa in hand.

      Adoptive parents should come to the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan, with all the necessary paperwork, to schedule an interview. Parents can visit the U.S. Embassy between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Armenian and American holidays. The Embassy tries to accommodate all parents as quickly as possible, but please note that the orphan investigation may take several days. Please contact the Consular Section upon arrival in country to inform the staff of your time-table and to raise any questions or concerns.

      A consular officer is required to review each adoption case carefully and make an independent determination of the child's eligibility for a visa. In all cases, the child must be present at the Embassy for the I-604 investigation interview.

      In addition to the complete adoption file presented for the I-600 (or to USCIS for the I-800), you will also need the following:

      • A medical exam completed by a designated panel physician*;
      • The child's Armenian passport;
      • Two identical full face photographs measuring 2"X2";
      • $400 for visa application and issuance fees (payable in cash only -- U.S. dollars or Armenian dram).
      • DS-260 (Application for Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration) filled out from the point of view of the child, but not signed.

    *The Panel Physician's examination is designed to comply with specific visa regulations, and is not intended to be a fully inclusive physical examination. If adoptive parents wish to consult a pediatrician for a more complete physical exam, or for any health problems, the Embassy can provide a current list of doctors and sources for medicine.

    Note: Visa issuance after the final interview now generally takes at least 24 hours and it will not normally be possible to provide the visa to adoptive parents on the day of the interview. Adoptive parents should verify current processing times at the embassy before making final travel arrangements.

CHILD CITIZENSHIP ACT

For adoptions finalized abroad: The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 allows your child to acquire American citizenship when he or she enters the United States as lawful permanent residents.

For adoptions to be finalized in the United States: The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 allows your child to typically acquire American citizenship when the U.S. state court issues the final adoption decree. We urge your family to finalize the adoption in a U.S. State court as quickly as possible.

*Please be aware that if your child did not qualify to become a citizen upon entry to the United States, it is very important that you take the steps necessary so that your child does qualify as soon as possible. Failure to obtain citizenship for your child can impact many areas of his/her life including family travel, eligibility for education and education grants, and voting.

Learn more about the Child Citizenship Act.

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Traveling Abroad

APPLYING FOR YOUR U.S. PASSPORT

A valid U.S. passport is required to enter and leave Armenia. Only the U.S. Department of State has the authority to grant, issue, or verify U.S. passports.

Getting or renewing a passport is easy. The Passport Application Wizardwill help you determine which passport form you need, help you to complete the form online, estimate your payment, and generate the form for you to print-all in one place.

OBTAINING YOUR VISA

In addition to a U.S. passport, you also need to obtain a visa. A visa is an official document issued by a foreign country that formally allows you to visit. Where required, visas are attached to your passport and allow you to enter a foreign nation.

To find information about obtaining a visa for Armenia, see the Department of State's Country Specific Information.

STAYING SAFE ON YOUR TRIP

Before you travel, it's always a good practice to investigate the local conditions, laws, political landscape, and culture of the country. The State Department is a good place to start.

The Department of State provides Country Specific Information for every country of the world about various issues, including the health conditions, crime, unusual currency or entry requirements, and any areas of instability.

STAYING IN TOUCH ON YOUR TRIP

When traveling during the adoption process, we encourage you to register your trip with the Department of State. Travel registration makes it possible to contact you if necessary. Whether there's a family emergency in the United States, or a crisis in Armenia, registration assists the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in reaching you.

Registration is free and can be done online.

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After Adoption

What does Armenia require of the adoptive parents after the adoption? 

According to Armenian law, there are no post-adoption requirements for intercountry adoptions.

What resources are available to assist families after the adoption?

Many adoptive parents find it important to find support after the adoption. Take advantage of all the resources available to your family -- whether it's another adoptive family, a support group, an advocacy organization, or your religious or community services.

Here are some good places to start your support group search:

Note: Inclusion of non-U.S. Government links does not imply endorsement of contents.

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Contact Information

U.S. Embassy in Armenia
1 American Avenue
Yerevan, Republic of Armenia
Tel: (+374 10) 464-700, 494-686
Fax: (+374 10) 464-742, 464-737
Email: consular@usa.am
Interner: https://am.usembassy.gov/

Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia
Vazgen Sargsyan 3/8
YEREVAN 0010
Republic of Armenia
Yerevan, Armenia
Tel: (374 10) 56-53-83 or 52-68-31

Embassy of the Republic of Armenia
2225 R Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008, USA
Tel: (202) 319-1976
Fax: (202) 319-2982
Email: armconsul@speakeasy.net
Internet: http://www.armeniaemb.org

Armenian Consulate General
50 North La Cienega Boulevard, Suite 210
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
Tel: (310) 657-7320
Email: armconla@aol.com

Office of Children's Issues
U.S. Department of State  
CA/OCS/CI  
SA-17, 9th Floor  
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Tel: 1-888-407-4747
E-mail: AskCI@state.gov
http://adoption.state.gov

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
For questions about immigration procedures, call the National Customer Service Center (NCSC)
1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833)

Reciprocity Schedule

Select a visa category below to find the visa issuance fee, number of entries, and validity period for visas issued to applicants from this country*/area of authority.

Explanation of Terms

Visa Classification: The type of nonimmigrant visa you are applying for.

Fee: The reciprocity fee, also known as the visa issuance fee, you must pay. This fee is in addition to the nonimmigrant visa application fee (MRV fee).

Number of Entries: The number of times you may seek entry into the United States with that visa. "M" means multiple times. If there is a number, such as "One", you may apply for entry one time with that visa.

Validity Period: This generally means the visa is valid, or can be used, from the date it is issued until the date it expires, for travel with that visa. If your Validity Period is 60 months, your visa will be valid for 60 months from the date it is issued.

Visa Classifications
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
K
L
M
N
O
P
Q
R
S
T
U
V
 
Visa
Classification
Fee Number
of Entries
Validity
Period
A-1 None Multiple 60 Months 
A-2 None Multiple 60 Months 
A-3 1 None Multiple 24 Months
B-1 None Multiple 120 Months
B-2 None Multiple 120 Months
B-1/B-2 None Multiple 120 Months
C-1 None Multiple 120 Months
C-1/D N/A N/A N/A
C-2 None Multiple 12 Months
C-3 None Multiple 60 Months
CW-1 11 None Multiple 12 Months
CW-2 11 None Multiple 12 Months
D None Multiple 120 Months
E-1 2 No Treaty N/A N/A
E-2 2 None Multiple 60 Months
E-2C 12 None Multiple 12 Months
F-1 None Multiple 60 Months
F-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-1 None Multiple 60 Months 
G-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-3 None Multiple 60 Months
G-4 None Multiple 60 Months
G-5 1 None Multiple 24 Months
H-1B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-1C None Multiple 12 Months 3
H-2A None N/A N/A3
H-2B None N/A N/A3
H-2R None Multiple 12 Months 3
H-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
I None Multiple 60 Months
J-1 4 None Multiple 60 Months
J-2 4 None Multiple 60 Months
K-1 None One 6 Months
K-2 None One 6 Months
K-3 None Multiple 24 Months
K-4 None Multiple 24 Months
L-1 None Multiple 60 Months
L-2 None Multiple 60 Months
M-1 None Multiple 60 Months
M-2 None Multiple 60 Months
N-8 $50.00 Multiple 12 Months C
N-9 $50.00 Multiple 12 Months C
NATO 1-7 N/A N/A N/A
O-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
Q-1 6 None Multiple 60 Months 3
R-1 None Multiple 60 Months
R-2 None Multiple 60 Months
S-5 7 None One 1 Month
S-6 7 None One 1 Month
S-7 7 None One 1 Month
T-1 9 N/A N/A N/A
T-2 None One 6 Months
T-3 None One 6 Months
T-4 None One 6 Months
T-5 None One 6 Months
T-6 None One 6 Months
TD 5 N/A N/A N/A
U-1 None Multiple 60 Months
U-2 None Multiple 60 Months
U-3 None Multiple 60 Months
U-4 None Multiple 60 Months
U-5 None Multiple 60 Months
V-1 None Multiple 120 Months
V-2 None Multiple 120 Months 8
V-3 None Multiple 120 Months 8
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Country Specific Footnotes
  1. Diplomats and others entitled to A-1 visas are entitled to 60 month, multiple entry visas. Diplomatic couriers may only be issued A-1 visas valid for multiple entries within 12 months, or for one entry within three months, depending on the request from the host government.

  2. Principal resident representative and members of the immediate family receive visas valid for 60 months, multiple entries. Others classified G-1 receive visas valid for 24 months, multiple entries.

  3. Tiered Fee Schedule for N-8 and N-9 Visas:

    Fee Number
    of Applications
    Validity
    Period
    $0.00 One 3 Months
    $50.00 Multiple 12 Months

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.

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Visa Category Footnotes
  1. The validity of A-3, G-5, and NATO 7 visas may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the person who is employing the applicant. The "employer" would have one of the following visa classifications:

    • A-1
    • A-2
    • G-1 through G-4
    • NATO 1 through NATO 6

  2. An E-1 and E-2 visa may be issued only to a principal alien who is a national of a country having a treaty, or its equivalent, with the United States. E-1 and E-2 visas may not be issued to a principal alien if he/she is a stateless resident. The spouse and children of an E-1 or E-2 principal alien are accorded derivative E-1 or E-2 status following the reciprocity schedule, including any reciprocity fees, of the principle alien’s country of nationality.  

    Example: John Doe is a national of the country of Z that has an E-1/E-2 treaty with the U.S. His wife and child are nationals of the country of Y which has no treaty with the U.S. The wife and child would, therefore, be entitled to derivative status and receive the same reciprocity as Mr. Doe, the principal visa holder.  

  3. The validity of H-1 through H-3, O-1 and O-2, P-1 through P-3, and Q visas may not exceed the period of validity of the approved petition or the number of months shown, whichever is less.

    Under 8 CFR §214.2, H-2A and H-2B petitions may generally only be approved for nationals of countries that the Secretary of Homeland Security has designated as participating countries. The current list of eligible countries is available on USCIS's website for both H-2A and H-2B visas. Nationals of countries not on this list may be the beneficiary of an approved H-2A or H2-B petition in limited circumstances at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security if specifically named on the petition.  

    Derivative H-4, L-2, O-3, and P-4 visas, issued to accompanying or following-to-join spouses and children, may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the principal alien.

  4. There is no reciprocity fee for the issuance of a J visa if the alien is a United States Government grantee or a participant in an exchange program sponsored by the United States Government.

    Also, there is no reciprocity fee for visa issuance to an accompanying or following-to-join spouse or child (J-2) of an exchange visitor grantee or participant.

    In addition, an applicant is eligible for an exemption from the MRV fee if he or she is participating in a State Department, USAID, or other federally funded educational and cultural exchange program (program serial numbers G-1, G-2, G-3 and G-7).

    However, all other applicants with U.S. Government sponsorships, including other J-visa applicants, are subject to the MRV processing fee.

  5. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Canadian and Mexican nationals coming to engage in certain types of professional employment in the United States may be admitted in a special nonimmigrant category known as the "trade NAFTA" or "TN" category. Their dependents (spouse and children) accompanying or following to join them may be admitted in the "trade dependent" or "TD" category whether or not they possess Canadian or Mexican nationality. Except as noted below, the number of entries, fees and validity for non-Canadian or non-Mexican family members of a TN status holder seeking TD visas should be based on the reciprocity schedule of the TN principal alien.

    Canadian Nationals

    Since Canadian nationals generally are exempt from visa requirement, a Canadian "TN' or "TD" alien does not require a visa to enter the United States. However, the non-Canadian national dependent of a Canadian "TN", unless otherwise exempt from the visa requirement, must obtain a "TD" visa before attempting to enter the United States. The standard reciprocity fee and validity period for all non-Canadian "TD"s is no fee, issued for multiple entries for a period of 36 months, or for the duration of the principal alien's visa and/or authorized period of stay, whichever is less. See 'NOTE' under Canadian reciprocity schedule regarding applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality.

    Mexican Nationals

    Mexican nationals are not visa-exempt. Therefore, all Mexican "TN"s and both Mexican and non-Mexican national "TD"s accompanying or following to join them who are not otherwise exempt from the visa requirement (e.g., the Canadian spouse of a Mexican national "TN") must obtain nonimmigrant visas.

    Applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality, who have a permanent resident or refugee status in Canada/Mexico, may not be accorded Canadian/Mexican reciprocity, even when applying in Canada/Mexico. The reciprocity fee and period for "TD" applicants from Libya is $10.00 for one entry over a period of 3 months. The Iranian and Iraqi "TD" is no fee with one entry over a period of 3 months.

  6. Q-2 (principal) and Q-3 (dependent) visa categories are in existence as a result of the 'Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program Act of 1998'. However, because the Department anticipates that virtually all applicants for this special program will be either Irish or U.K. nationals, the Q-2 and Q-3 categories have been placed only in the reciprocity schedules for those two countries. Q-2 and Q-3 visas are available only at the Embassy in Dublin and the Consulate General in Belfast.

  7. No S visa may be issued without first obtaining the Department's authorization.

  8. V-2 and V-3 status is limited to persons who have not yet attained their 21st birthday. Accordingly, the period of validity of a V-2 or V-3 visa must be limited to expire on or before the applicant's twenty-first birthday.

  9. Posts may not issue a T-1 visa. A T-1 applicant must be physically present in the United States, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands or a U.S. port of entry, where he/she will apply for an adjustment of status to that of a T-1. The following dependents of a T-1 visa holder, however, may be issued a T visa at a U.S. consular office abroad:

    • T-2 (spouse)
    • T-3 (child)
    • T-4 (parent)
  10. The validity of NATO-5 visas may not exceed the period of validity of the employment contract or 12 months, whichever is less.

  11. The validity of CW-1 and CW-2 visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (12 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

  12. The validity of E-2C visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (24 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

 

 

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General Documents

Civil documents, except as noted below, are available in Armenia. Certified copies of available documents may be exported. Certified copies of original documents can be obtained at a local notary office upon presenting the original documents. The Ministry of Justice is responsible for the apostille of certified copies.

Note: Except as indicated, each of the documents mentioned below is available only to the individual concerned or to his/her duly empowered agent. A local legal representative may obtain the document on behalf of the individual concerned on the latter’s written power of attorney. 

Birth, Death, Burial Certificates

Available. All the above-mentioned certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. There is one exception: In Yerevan, death certificates may be obtained at the Civic Status Registration Department at the “Public Special Service” CJSC (also known as the funeral bureau) of the Municipality of Yerevan located at 18 Arshakunyats Avenue, Yerevan, Armenia. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Marriage, Divorce Certificates

Available. All the above-mentioned certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Same-sex marriage is not recognized in Armenia.

Adoption Certificates
Available. Adoption certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Potential adoptive parents are granted the right to apply for an adoption certificate upon the basis of a court decision (and the entry of that court’s decision into force). If the adoptive parent/s so desire, the Civic Status Registration Department will issue a new birth certificate for the adopted child that shows them as the parents and does not indicate the child was adopted. Please see the country specific adoption sheet for more details. 
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Identity Card

See "Passports & Other Travel Documents."

Police, Court, Prison Records

Police Certificates 

Available. Requests for Armenian police records should be submitted to the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia (RA MFA):

  1. In person Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10.00 to 12.00 in the reception hall of the administrative building of MFA on Amiryan Street in Yerevan;
  2. By mail to Consular Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government House Republic Square, Yerevan 0010, Armenia;
  3. Online at http://www.mfa.am/en/clearance/.

The certificate is generally available with five working days and fees are dependent on the delivery requirements.  Details about documentary requirements, fees, delivery options, and the online application form are available at the MFA’s website: http://www.mfa.am/en/clearance/.

Applicants residing outside of Armenia can make their requests through Armenian embassies or Consulates General (listed here: http://www.mfa.am/en/by-countries/) or online (http://www.mfa.am/en/clearance/) The process normally takes five working days plus shipping time.  

Court Records

Available. Court records, usually a certified copy of a judgment of the court, can be obtained from the court where the decision was made.

Under Armenian law, prior criminal records may be expunged under several different sets of circumstances after a certain period of time has passed since the end of the sentence; in the case of suspended sentences, after the expiry of the probation period after parole; in the case of a sentence other than imprisonment, one year; in the case of a not grave or medium-gravity crime, after three years; in the case of a grave crime, five years; in the case of a particularly grave crime, eight years. Thus, if a person committed, for instance, a grave crime and more than five years have passed since the completion of her/his sentence, the MFA’s police certificate will not show a record regarding this crime. 

Military Records

Available. All male citizens of Armenia, aged 16 to 18 are issued a military registration card. The military registration cards of persons aged 18 to 27 who have not yet served in the Army contain information on the legal basis of their deferment of military service.

All male citizens of Armenia, except as noted above, over age 20 should have a military booklet, (a military service document, also known as voyenni billet in Russian) which contains information on the terms of service and/or discharge. After turning 27, persons holding registration cards with legal deferment stamps will also be issued a military booklet. 

Passports & Other Travel Documents

There are four types of documents that allow individuals to reside in Armenia:

  1. regular passport;
  2. residency permits;
  3. non-citizen certificates (issued to refugees);
  4. national ID cards. 

All Armenian citizens 16 and older are issued a regular passport by the passport agency of their local police department. This passport is for internal and, if an exit permit stamp is obtained, external use and is valid for five years. Holders of Armenian passports can apply at any time to renew, change, or extend his/her passport or exit permit stamp, regardless of passport condition or validity period.  Armenian citizens must submit their old passports to the passport agency for verification before receiving a new passport. Armenian diplomatic passports are valid for five years and cannot be extended.

Armenian citizens under the age of 16 are issued passports to travel abroad. These passports are valid for three years. Armenian citizens under the age of 16 need to have only one parent’s (or other legal representative’s) consent to apply for a passport.  

Residence permits for aliens are available in three types:

  1. temporary: valid for one year, with the possibility to extend for an additional year
  2. permanent: valid for five years, with the possibility to extend for an additional five years,
  3. special residency passports: valid for ten years with the possibility to extend for another ten years. 

Other Records

Change of Name Certificates

Available. Change of Name certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Persons 18 years old and over can apply to the appropriate Civic Status Registration Department for a Change of Name certificate. Applicants can change their first, last and father’s name. Persons 16 to 18 years of age need their parents’ consent. 

Visa Issuing Posts

Yerevan (Embassy)

Address: 1st American avenue, Yerevan 0082

Phone Number: +37410464700

 

 

Visa Services

Processing all types of Immigrant and Non-Immigrant Visas. Yerevan is one of the four Iranian-designated posts processing every type of IV and NIV visas.

Foreign Consular Office Contact Information

Washington, D.C. (202) 319-1976 ext. 111 (202) 319-8330

Glendale, CA (818) 265-5900 (818) 265-3800

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Yerevan
1 American Avenue
Yerevan 0082, Republic of Armenia
Telephone
+(374) 10-464-700
Emergency
+(374) 10-494-444 and during business
hours (M-F 9am-5:30pm) +(374) 10-494-685
Fax
+(374) 10-464-742
Armenia Country Map

Learn about your destination
Additional Information for Reciprocity

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.

Country Information

Armenia
Republic of Armenia
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Embassy Messages

Yerevan

 

Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

Must be valid at time of entry

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

No requirement

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

None for U.S. Citizens staying for less than 180 days per year

VACCINATIONS:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

$10,000 USD

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

$10,000 USD

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Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Yerevan

1 American Avenue
Yerevan 0082, Republic of Armenia
Telephone: +(374) 10-464-700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(374) 10-494-444 and during
business hours (M-F 9am-5:30pm) +(374) 10-494-685
Fax: +(374) 10-464-742
Email: 

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Destination Description

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Armenia for more information on U.S.-Armenia relations.

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Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

You need a valid passport to enter Armenia. U.S. citizens are allowed visa-free entry to Armenia for up to 180 days per year. For visits of longer than 180 days, you must apply for a residency permit through the Armenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Visit the Embassy of Armenia’s website for the most current visa information.

  • Armenian legislation permits Armenian citizens to hold dual citizenship. Even if you naturalized in the United States, the Government of Armenia may still consider you an Armenian citizen. Children born in the United States to two Armenian citizens are also considered Armenian citizens. Please read the information about Armenian citizenship at the Embassy of Armenia’s website. Armenian citizens are subject to certain entry/exit and Armenian military service requirements. See the “Local Laws and Special Circumstances” section below.
  • If you are of Armenian descent and possess an Armenian “special passport,” you still need a valid U.S. passport to enter Armenia. Border guards have refused to admit U.S. citizens carrying “special passports” (a residency permit). Please visit the Embassy of Armenia website for further details.
  • Traveling to the region of Nagorno-Karabakh and the surrounding territories via Armenia could make you ineligible to travel to Azerbaijan in the future.
  • Engaging in commercial activities inside Nagorno-Karabakh can make it difficult to conduct business inside Azerbaijan or with the Government of Azerbaijan. For more information on commercial activities in Nagorno-Karabakh, please visit the Country Commercial Guide.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Armenia.

Find information on dual nationalityprevention of international child abduction, and customs on our websites.

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Safety and Security

Credible information indicates terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Europe. European governments are taking action to guard against terrorist attacks; however, all European countries remain potentially vulnerable to attacks from transnational terrorist organizations.

  • Avoid demonstrations. During the last presidential election, political rallies ended in violence and casualties. Recently, civic and political activists have been injured and detained.
  • Security messages regarding demonstrations and strikes, explosive devices/suspicious packages, and weather-related events can be found on the Embassy’s website.
  • Armenia is prone to earthquakes and landslides.
  • Land borders with Turkey and Azerbaijan remain closedand are patrolled by armed troops.

The Nagorno-Karabakh Area and Conflict

  • The U.S. Government is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Nagorno-Karabakh.
  • Casualties continue to occur in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Avoid traveling near the line of contact between the conflicting parties. Despite the declaration of a cessation in hostilities, intermittent gunfire and use of heavy weaponry including landmines and mortars continue. Landmines result in a handful of deaths and injuries each year near the conflict zones.

Crime: Crime is relatively low, and violent crime is sporadic. Vehicle break-ins and theft are the most common crimes. Police indicate that there is a criminal group in Yerevan that targets foreigners and burglarizes rented apartments when the victims are away. When police are called they routinely show up.

  • U.S. investors report involvement in property ownership disputes and have sought legal recourse through long, often unsuccessful, court proceedings. The U.S.-Armenia Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) provides that in the event of a dispute between an American investor and the Republic of Armenia, the investor may take the case to international arbitration.
  • Credit card fraud and ATM card skimming occurs.

See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information on scams.

Victims of Crime: Report crimes and all requests for emergency services by dialing 911 where English speaking operators are available. Also contact the U.S. Embassy at (+374) 10-464-700 to report your situation.

Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • Explain the local criminal justice process in general terms
  • Provide a list of local attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the United States
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport

Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the Embassy for assistance. Local resources for victims of domestic violence include shelters, medical assistance, and legal aid. Victims of domestic violence may contact the Women’s Rights Center at + (374) 10-542-828 or (0800) 80-850, 24 hours a day. Other resources include the Women’s Support Center at + (374) 099-887-808, and the Light House shelter at + (374) 93-327-834; + (374) 43-500-503 or “20-80”, preferably during business hours because of lack of fluent English speakers. In case of sexual violence, victims may contact the Women’s Resource Center at + (374) 077-991-280 and (0800) 01-280, from 9:00 AM to midnight.

For further information:

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Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate them, even unknowingly, you may be arrested or imprisoned.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the U.S., regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Please review the State Department’s page on Arrests or Detention of U.S Citizens Abroad. In addition, many people accused of crimes are held in local prisons in pre-trial detention for between two and twelve months without the possibility of posting bail while waiting for a court hearing.

Possession, trafficking, or the uses of drugs, including marijuana, are illegal. A prescription for medical marijuana may not protect you from prosecution. If you are arrested for a drug offense, you could face detention during the investigation and a prison sentence after conviction. There have been recent cases where electronic cigarettes and related paraphernalia have been perceived as drug related. In these cases, arrestees often have been held without bail until forensic tests clear them.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.

  • Some local officials seek bribes to perform basic duties.
  • Customs authorities may enforce regulations concerning the import/export of items like firearms, pornography, and communications equipment. Please refer to the Armenian Customs Service website for further information.
  • The export of items of historical value, such as paintings, carpets, and old books, requires advanced authorization from the Armenian Ministry of Culture. Contact the Embassy of Armenia for further information.

Dual nationals: Armenian legislation permits Armenian citizens to hold dual citizenship. Even if you naturalized in the United States, the Government of Armenia may still consider you an Armenian citizen. Children born in the United States to two Armenian citizens are also considered Armenian citizens. Please read the Armenian Law on Citizenship.

  • Armenian law requires that Armenian citizens enter and depart Armenia on Armenian passports. Individuals who are dual citizens, or could be, should consult with the Armenian Embassy in Washington prior to traveling.
  • Armenian males over the age of 18 are subject to mandatory military service. Penalties for evading military service include jail time and a substantial fine. Young dual citizen U.S.-Armenian men are advised to consult with the Armenian embassy prior to traveling. There have been instances where dual nationals have been detained at the airport upon arrival until they can resolve their military service issues. 

Faith-Based Travelers: See our following webpages for details:

LGBTI Travelers: There are no antidiscrimination laws protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) individuals in Armenia. There are no hate crime laws or other criminal judicial mechanisms to aid in the prosecution of crimes against members of the LGBTI community. Because of commonly-held negative stereotypes, LGBTI individuals face the potential of discrimination and harassment by state and private actors. The Department of State’s 2016 Human Rights Report documents that both politicians and the media engaged in “hate speech” toward members of the LGBTI community in Armenia, and that members of the LGBTI community experienced physical violence, threats of violence, blackmail, and harassment. Police were unresponsive to reports of abuses against the LGBTI community and at times, themselves mistreated LGBTI persons.

See our LGBTI travel information page and section six of our Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: Although Armenia signed the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2007, Armenian authorities have yet to enforce it. Facilities with accommodations for individuals with disabilities are nonexistent.

Students: See our students abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: Informal taxis or mini-buses pose particular threats to people unfamiliar with local conditions, especially to women traveling alone. Find out from reliable sources, such as local authorities or tourism officials, what is and is not safe. See our travel tips for women travelers

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Health

Outside major cities, medical facilities in Armenia are limited. Medical emergency services at Armenian airports are not on par with U.S. airports. The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of English-speaking doctors. Elderly travelers and those with existing health problems may be at risk from inadequate medical facilities.

We have received reports of cases of brucellosis from unpasteurized dairy products.

We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare does not apply overseas.

Most prescription medications are available, but quality varies. Armenian customs officials have sometimes confiscated medication from travelers upon arrival.

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

  • We strongly recommend supplemental insurance (our webpage) to cover medical evacuation.
  • If traveling with prescription medication, check with the government of Armenia to ensure the medication is legal in Armenia. Always, carry your prescription medication in its original packaging with your doctor’s prescription. 

Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

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Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: The information below is provided for general reference only. Road conditions in Armenia differ significantly from those in the United States. Exercise caution when driving in Armenia. Reckless driving is common. Drivers frequently ignore traffic laws.

  • Avoid traveling at night due to poor road conditions and limited emergency response resources. Pedestrians often cross dark streets away from designated pedestrian crossings while wearing dark clothing. U.S. Embassy employees are prohibited from driving at night outside the city limits of Yerevan.
  • Yield to aggressive drivers to reduce your risk of being a victim of aggression. Though crime along roadways is rare, police are known to seek bribes during traffic stops and harass drivers using U.S. or international driver’s licenses.
  • Winter travel can also be hazardous, especially in mountainous areas.
  • Avoid roads near the line of contact with Azerbaijan. Villages and their connecting border roads in this area include, but are not limited to: Dovegh, Barekamavan, Berkaber, Azatamut, Vazashen, Varagavan, Paravakar, Aygepar, Azatamut, and Chinari. U.S. Embassy employees are restricted from traveling in these areas. (The Line of Contact restrictions for U.S. Embassy employees are roughly a line from Haghtanak to Berd to Aygedzor. The towns listed and anything east are restricted to U.S. Embassy employees).
  • Watch out for drunk drivers, especially on the weekends. Be extra careful on the main highway from Yerevan to the resort areas of Tsaghkadzor and Sevan.
  • Primary roads are frequently in poor condition with stretches of missing pavement and large potholes. Some roads shown as primary roads on maps are unpaved and can narrow to one lane. Maps may be inaccurate.
  • Secondary roads are normally in poor condition and are often unpaved. Roads may not have signs. Police and emergency medical services may take a long time to reach remote regions.
  • Gasoline quality ranges from good at reliable stations in cities to very poor. Do not buy gasoline and other fuels sold out of jars, barrels, and trucks by roadside merchants.

Public Transportation: Public transportation, while inexpensive, may be unreliable and uncomfortable. Sexual assaults have often been reported on public transportation. Minibuses are dangerous, overcrowded, poorly maintained, lack seatbelts, and are frequently involved in accidents. Traveling by local unregistered taxis without meters can also prove difficult if a price is not agreed to ahead of time.

See our road safety webpage for more information. Visit the website of Armenia’s national tourist office website and national authority responsible for road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Armenia, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Armenia’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Hague Convention Participation
Party to the Hague Abduction Convention?
Yes
U.S. Treaty Partner under the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
What You Can Do
Learn how to respond to abductions FROM the US
Learn how to respond to abductions TO the US
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Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Yerevan

1 American Avenue
Yerevan 0082, Republic of Armenia
Telephone: +(374) 10-464-700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(374) 10-494-444 and during
business hours (M-F 9am-5:30pm) +(374) 10-494-685
Fax: +(374) 10-464-742
Email: 

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General Information

For information concerning travel to Armenia, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, entry/exit requirements, safety and security, crime, medical facilities and health information, traffic safety, road conditions and aviation safety, please see country-specific information for Armenia. 

The U.S. Department of State reports statistics and compliance information for individual countries in the Annual Report on International Parental Child Abduction (IPCA).  The report is located here.

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Hague Abduction Convention

Armenia acceded to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Abduction Convention) on June 1, 2007, however, the United States and Armenia are not yet treaty partners.  Until Armenia and the United States establish a treaty relationship per Article 38 of the Convention, parents whose children have been abducted from the United States to Armenia or wrongfully retained in Armenia are unable to invoke the Hague Abduction Convention to pursue their children’s return or to seek access to them.

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Return

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  The government of Armenia maintains information about custody, visitation, and family law on the internet here. Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Armenia and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.  

Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Armenia and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.

The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs, Directorate for Overseas Citizens Services, Office of Children’s Issues provides assistance in cases of international parental child abduction.  For U.S. citizen parents whose children have been wrongfully removed to or retained in countries that are not U.S. partners under the Hague Abduction Convention, the Office of Children’s Issues can provide information and resources about country-specific options for pursuing the return of or access to an abducted child.  The Office of Children’s Issues may also coordinate with appropriate foreign and U.S. government authorities about the welfare of abducted U.S. citizen children.  Parents are strongly encouraged to contact the Department of State for assistance.

Contact information:

U.S. Department of State
CA/OCS/CI
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Telephone:  1-888-407-4747
Outside the United States or Canada: 1-202-501-4444
Website: travel.state.gov/

Email: AskCI@state.gov 

Parental child abduction is a crime in Armenia.  In Armenia, one of the parents may leave with a child without asking the permission of the other. However, it can be considered “wrongful” if such action interferes with the normal exercise of parental rights of the other parent arising from a judicial or administrative decision having legal effect under Armenian law.  

Parents may wish to consult with an attorney in the United States and in Armenia to learn more about how filing criminal charges may impact a custody case in the foreign court.  Please see Possible Solutions - Pressing Criminal Charges for more information.  

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Visitation/Access

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Armenia and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.

The Office of Children’s Issues may be able to assist parents seeking access to children who have been wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States.  Parents who are seeking access to children who were not wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States should contact the appropriate U.S. Embassy in Armenia for information and possible assistance. Contact information for the American Citizens Services unit is (374-10) 49-46-86, fax number (374-10) 46-47-37; email: acsyerevan@state.gov.  

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Retaining an Attorney

Neither the Office of Children’s Issues nor consular officials at the U.S. Embassy in Armenia are authorized to provide legal advice.

The U.S. Embassy in Yerevan, Armenia, posts a list of attorneys,including those who specialize in family law.

This list is provided as a courtesy service only and does not constitute an endorsement of any individual attorney. The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the persons or firms included in this list. Professional credentials and areas of expertise are provided directly by the lawyers.

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Mediation

We are unaware of any Mediation services available in Armenia at this time.

Exercising Custody Rights

While travelling in a foreign country, you are subject to the laws of that country. It is important for parents to understand that, although a left-behind parent in the United States may have custody or visitation rights pursuant to a U.S. custody order, that order may not be valid and enforceable in the country in which the child is located.  For this reason, we strongly encourage you to speak to a local attorney if planning to remove a child from a foreign country without the consent of the other parent.  Attempts to remove your child to the United States may:

  • Endanger your child and others;
  • Prejudice any future judicial efforts; and
  • Could result in your arrest and imprisonment.

The U.S. government cannot interfere with another country’s court or law enforcement system.

To understand the legal effect of a U.S. order in a foreign country, a parent should consult with a local attorney in the country in which the child is located.  

For information about hiring an attorney abroad, see our section on Retaining a Foreign Attorney. 

Although we cannot recommend an attorney to you, most U.S. Embassies have lists of attorneys available online. Please visit the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate website for a full listing.

For more information on consular assistance for U.S. citizens arrested abroad, please see our website.

Country officers are available to speak with you Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  For assistance with an abduction in progress or any emergency situation that occurs after normal business hours, on weekends, or federal holidays, please call toll free at 1-888-407-4747. See all contact information.

DISCLAIMER: The information in this flyer is provided for general information only, is not intended to be legal advice, and may change without notice. Questions involving interpretation of law should be addressed to an attorney licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. 

 

Hague Convention Participation
Hague Adoption Convention Country?
Yes
Are Intercountry Adoptions between this country and the United States possible?
Is this country a U.S. Hague Partner?
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Hague Convention Information

Armenia is party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention). Therefore all adoptions between Armenia and the United States must meet the requirements of the Convention and U.S. law implementing the Convention.

Note: Special transition provisions apply to adoptions initiated before April 1, 2008. Learn more.

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Who Can Adopt

Adoption between the United States and Armenia is governed by the Hague Adoption Convention. Therefore to adopt from Armenia, you must first be found eligible to adopt by the U.S. Government. The U.S. Government agency responsible for making this determination is the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Learn more

In addition to these U.S. requirements for prospective adoptive parents, Armenia also has the following requirements for prospective adoptive parents:

  • Residency Requirements: Prospective adoptive parents do not have to fulfill any residency requirements to adopt in Armenia.
  • Age Requirements: Single prospective adoptive parents must be at least 18 years older than the adopted child.
  • Marriage Requirements: Both single individuals and married couples are eligible to adopt.
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Who Can Be Adopted

Because Armenia is party to the Hague Adoption Convention, children from Armenia must meet the requirements of the Convention in order to be eligible for adoption. For example, the Convention requires that Armenia attempt to place a child with a family in-country before determining that a child is eligible for intercountry adoption. In addition to Armenia's requirements, a child must meet the definition of a Convention adoptee for you to bring him or her back to the United States.

Learn more about the Convention's requirements for adoptable children.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

There are many children living in orphanages, however, ONLY those children whose parents have died, disappeared, or signed a statement of relinquishment of their parental rights, and whose families do not visit them, thus abandoning them, are available for adoption. In addition, consent for child adoption can only be given after the birth of the child.

  • Reliquishment Requirements: If biological parents are alive, the biological parents must sign a statement of relinquishment in order for a child to be eligible for adoption.
  • Abandonment Requirements: A child's name must be listed on the national registry list for three months before he or she is declared available for intercountry adoption. For this reason, it is impossible to adopt a very young infant from Armenia.
  • Waiting Period: The names of children available for adoption are listed by the Ministry of Labor and Social Issues. A child's name must remain on the list for three months before he/she is declared available for intercountry adoption.
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How to Adopt

ARMENIA'S ADOPTION AUTHORITY

National Adoption Committee of the Republic of Armenia

THE PROCESS

Because Armenia is party to the Hague Adoption Convention, adopting from Armenia must follow a specific process designed to meet the Convention's requirements. A brief summary of the Convention adoption process is given below. You must complete these steps in the following order so that your adoption meets all necessary legal requirements.

Note: If you filed your I-600a with Armenia before April 1, 2008, the Hague Adoption Convention may not apply to your adoption. Your adoption could continue to be processed in accordance with the immigration regulations for non-Convention adoptions. Learn more.

  1. Choose an Accredited Adoption Service Provider
  2. Apply to be Found Eligible to Adopt
  3. Be Matched with a Child
  4. Apply for the Child to be Found Eligible for Immigration to the United States
  5. Adopt the Child in Armenia
  6. Bring your Child Home
  1. Choose an Accredited Adoption Service Provider

    The first step in adopting a child from Armenia is to select an adoption service provider in the United States that has been accredited. Only these agencies and attorneys can provide adoption services between the United States and Armenia. Learn more.

    Please note that Armenian law does not recognize the involvement of professional facilitators, adoption agencies or attorneys; it allows the prospective parents to grant power of attorney to an individual to handle most aspects of the adoption process on their behalf. Some U.S. adoption agencies have contacts with experienced local individuals who can be given power of attorney. In many cases, prospective parents grant this power of attorney to individuals whom they trust, relatives, friends or acquaintances.

  2. Apply to be Found Eligible to Adopt

    After you choose an accredited adoption service provider, you apply to be found eligible to adopt (Form I-800A) by the U.S. Government, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Learn how.

    Once the U.S. Government determines that you are "eligible" and "suitable" to adopt, you or your agency will forward your information to the adoption authority in Armenia. Armenia's adoption authority will review your application to determine whether you are also eligible to adopt under Armenia's law.

    The National Adoption Committee has one month in which to conduct a study and issue a conclusion on the ability to adopt. That conclusion is valid for one year. Once the National Adoption Committee grants the permission to adopt, the adoptive parents may identify a child, from the children eligible for inter-country adoption listed in the registry kept by the Ministry of Labor and Social Issues.

  3. Be Matched with a Child

    If both the United States and Armenia determine that you are eligible to adopt, and a child is available for intercountry adoption, the central adoption authority in Armenia may provide you with a referral for a child. Each family must decide for itself whether or not it will be able to meet the needs of the particular child and provide a permanent family placement for the referred child. Learn more about this critical decision. In Armenia, the adoptive parents identify a child from the children eligible for inter-country adoption listed in the registry kept by the Ministry of Labor and Social Issues. The prospective parents or their representative may go to the Ministry and view the list, or they may visit orphanages directly and identify a child. Once they identify a child, they must verify his/her status by reviewing the list.

    Once the child has been identified, the prospective parents or their representative must submit their documents to the municipality in which the child resides. Once those documents are received, a court date is set. Please see Documents Required in #5 of this section.

    Prospective adoptive parents and the child (if over 14) must be present for court proceedings.

  4. Apply for the Child to be Found Eligible for Adoption

    After you accept a match with a child, you will apply to the U.S Government, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for provisional approval to adopt that particular child (Form I-800). USCIS will determine whether the child is eligible under U.S. law to be adopted and enter the United States. Learn how.

    After this, your adoption service provider or you will submit a visa application to a Consular Officer at the U.S. Embassy. The Consular Officer will review the child's information and evaluate the child for possible visa ineligibilities. If the Consular Office determines that the child appears eligible to immigrate to the United States, he/she will notify Armenia's adoption authority (Article 5 letter). For Convention country adoptions, prospective adoptive parent(s) may not proceed with the adoption or obtain custody for the purpose of adoption until this takes place.

    Remember: The Consular Officer will make a final decision about the immigrant visa later in the adoption process. 

    Adoptive parents and the child, if over 14, must be present for court proceedings. The court may request the presence of biological parents, orphanage representatives, or the child if the child is over the age of 10. The court proceedings are closed to the public.

    Cases may be rejected on the basis of incomplete or fraudulent paperwork, among other issues addressed in Armenian law. Prospective adoptive parents may be disqualified based on mental disease, drug addiction, alcoholism, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, or other infectious diseases.

    If any party wishes to cancel the adoption proceedings, that request will be adjudicated by the regular dispute court in Armenia.

  5. Adopt the Child (or Gain Legal Custody) in Armenia

    Remember: Before you adopt (or gain legal custody of) a child in Armenia, you must have completed the above four steps. Only after completing these steps, can you proceed to finalize the adoption or grant of custody for the purposes of adoption in Armenia.

    The process for finalizing the adoption (or gaining legal custody) in Armenia generally includes the following:

    • Role of The Adoption Authority: The National Adoption Committee reviews the prospective adoptive parents' registration documents and issues a conclusion on the ability to adopt.
    • Role of The Court: Once the child has been identified and the remaining documents are submitted, a court date is set. During the hearing, the judge makes decisions on any requests to change the child's name, birth date, etc. After the hearing, the court will issue a preliminary decision and 30 days later the Government registers the final court decision.

      If any party wishes to cancel the adoption proceedings, that request will be adjudicated by the regular dispute court in Armenia.
    • Role of Adoption Agencies: Armenian law does not recognize the involvement of professional facilitators, adoption agencies, or attorneys. It does allow prospective adoptive parents to grant power of attorney to an individual to handle most aspects of the adoption process on their behalf. Some U.S. adoption agencies have contacts with experienced local individuals who can be given power of attorney.
    • Time Frame: From start to finish, an adoption timeframe of one to two years is common. Once approval to adopt has been granted, it can take up to six months to identify a child and several more months to secure the proper paperwork from the different Government agencies to support an application to adopt that particular child.
    • Adoption Application: The prospective adoptive parents submit the adoption application to the National Adoption Committee.
    • Adoption Fee: The official fees necessary to procure the documents needed in support of the adoption are approximately $65 USD. The practice of charging official and unofficial expediting fees varies depending on the particular Government agency or local office. In addition, the attorneys or other individuals assisting the prospective adoptive parents with the adoption may charge fees for services rendered.

      In the adoption services contract that you sign at the beginning of the adoption process, your agency will itemize the fees and estimated expenses related to your adoption process. Learn more.
    • Documents Required: Please note that fraud is pervasive in Armenia. Fabricated documents or real documents fraudulently obtained are readily available. As a result, the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan must carefully investigate all visa cases. In adoptions it must be clearly determined whether the child meets the requirements under U.S. immigration law. The need for investigation may delay the issuance of the visa for the adopted child to travel to the United States. Cases deemed not clearly approvable by the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan will be referred to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in Moscow for review.

      The following is a list of documents required to request registration as prospective adoptive parents:
      • Copy of the prospective adoptive parents' U.S. passports
      • USCIS approval (either of the Form I-600A in a transition case or the Form I-800A in a new case)
      • Copy of certificate of home study, including a description of the family and the home where the adopted child will reside
      • Work verification letters indicating position, salary, and three letters of reference
      • Tax return for the most recent tax year
      • Copy of marriage certificate, if applicable
      • Copy of divorce decree, or spouse's death certificate, if applicable
      • Spousal consent (if only one spouse is legally adopting the child)
      • Medical evaluation report confirming that the prospective adoptive parent(s) do not suffer from any type of psychological condition, alcoholism or drug abuse, HIV AIDS or other STD, active tuberculosis or other infectious diseases
      • Local police check for prospective adoptive parents
      • Power of Attorney if documents will be submitted through an authorized representative
      • The following is a list of documents that must be submitted to the regional court presiding over the child's district:
      • Full names of the prospective adoptive parent(s) and child
      • Notification of prospective adoptive parents' plans to change the child's name, date or place of birth, or to list themselves as parents on new documents
      • Prospective adoptive parents' passports or other identification
      • Prospective adoptive parents' marriage certificate, if applicable
      • Spousal consent (if married and only one spouse is legally adopting the child)
      • Child's consent if the child is over 10 years of age
      • Child's birth certificate and medical records
      • Statement of child's centralized registration from the Ministry of Social Security
      • Written consent of adoptive parents, birth parents, and the orphanage. If applicable, death certificates of birth parents and consent of biological grandparents if the biological parents are not legal adults.
      • Government approval of prospective adoptive parents

    Note: Additional documents may be requested. If you are asked to provide proof that a document from the United States is authentic, we can help. Learn how.

  6. Bringing Your Child Home

    Now that your adoption is complete (or you have obtained legal custody of the child), there are a few more steps to take before you can head home. Specifically, you need to apply for several documents for your child before he or she can travel to the United States:

    • Birth Certificate 
      You will first need to apply for a new birth certificate for your child, so that you can later apply for a passport. Your name will be added to the new birth certificate.

      Adoptive parents may obtain the child's new birth certificate at the local registration office (ZAGS) of the child's municipality.

    • Armenian Passport 
      Your child is not yet a U.S. citizen, so he/she will need a travel document or Passport from Armenia.

      Adoptive parents must visit the Armenian passport agency, the OVIR, to obtain an Armenian passport for the child. The child must have a passport before the visa interview at the U.S. Embassy.

      Also, before the adoptive parents depart Armenia with their new son or daughter, they must visit the Notarial Office of the Ministry of Justice to get all of the new documents certified with an apostille. This is required for departing the country.

    • U.S. Immigrant Visa 
      After you obtain the new birth certificate and passport for your child, you also need to apply for an U.S. visa from the United States Embassy for your child. After the adoption (or custody for purpose of adoption) is granted, visit the U.S Embassy for final review and approval of the child's I-800 petition and to obtain a visa for the child. This immigrant visa allows your child to travel home with you. As part of this process, the Consular Officer must be provided the "Panel Physician's" medical report on the child if it was not provided during the provisional approval stage. Learn more

      Adoptive parents must schedule an appointment at the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan to file the I-600 (in transition cases), have an orphan investigation interview, and to apply for an immigrant visa. NOTE: In new cases, adoptive parents must file the I-800 with USCIS BEFORE the adoption is final. In some cases further investigation may be required to determine whether the adopted child meets the definition of orphan under U.S. law. Parents should not make final, non-refundable travel plans for return to the United States until they have their child's immigrant visa in hand.

      Adoptive parents should come to the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan, with all the necessary paperwork, to schedule an interview. Parents can visit the U.S. Embassy between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Armenian and American holidays. The Embassy tries to accommodate all parents as quickly as possible, but please note that the orphan investigation may take several days. Please contact the Consular Section upon arrival in country to inform the staff of your time-table and to raise any questions or concerns.

      A consular officer is required to review each adoption case carefully and make an independent determination of the child's eligibility for a visa. In all cases, the child must be present at the Embassy for the I-604 investigation interview.

      In addition to the complete adoption file presented for the I-600 (or to USCIS for the I-800), you will also need the following:

      • A medical exam completed by a designated panel physician*;
      • The child's Armenian passport;
      • Two identical full face photographs measuring 2"X2";
      • $400 for visa application and issuance fees (payable in cash only -- U.S. dollars or Armenian dram).
      • DS-260 (Application for Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration) filled out from the point of view of the child, but not signed.

    *The Panel Physician's examination is designed to comply with specific visa regulations, and is not intended to be a fully inclusive physical examination. If adoptive parents wish to consult a pediatrician for a more complete physical exam, or for any health problems, the Embassy can provide a current list of doctors and sources for medicine.

    Note: Visa issuance after the final interview now generally takes at least 24 hours and it will not normally be possible to provide the visa to adoptive parents on the day of the interview. Adoptive parents should verify current processing times at the embassy before making final travel arrangements.

CHILD CITIZENSHIP ACT

For adoptions finalized abroad: The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 allows your child to acquire American citizenship when he or she enters the United States as lawful permanent residents.

For adoptions to be finalized in the United States: The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 allows your child to typically acquire American citizenship when the U.S. state court issues the final adoption decree. We urge your family to finalize the adoption in a U.S. State court as quickly as possible.

*Please be aware that if your child did not qualify to become a citizen upon entry to the United States, it is very important that you take the steps necessary so that your child does qualify as soon as possible. Failure to obtain citizenship for your child can impact many areas of his/her life including family travel, eligibility for education and education grants, and voting.

Learn more about the Child Citizenship Act.

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Traveling Abroad

APPLYING FOR YOUR U.S. PASSPORT

A valid U.S. passport is required to enter and leave Armenia. Only the U.S. Department of State has the authority to grant, issue, or verify U.S. passports.

Getting or renewing a passport is easy. The Passport Application Wizardwill help you determine which passport form you need, help you to complete the form online, estimate your payment, and generate the form for you to print-all in one place.

OBTAINING YOUR VISA

In addition to a U.S. passport, you also need to obtain a visa. A visa is an official document issued by a foreign country that formally allows you to visit. Where required, visas are attached to your passport and allow you to enter a foreign nation.

To find information about obtaining a visa for Armenia, see the Department of State's Country Specific Information.

STAYING SAFE ON YOUR TRIP

Before you travel, it's always a good practice to investigate the local conditions, laws, political landscape, and culture of the country. The State Department is a good place to start.

The Department of State provides Country Specific Information for every country of the world about various issues, including the health conditions, crime, unusual currency or entry requirements, and any areas of instability.

STAYING IN TOUCH ON YOUR TRIP

When traveling during the adoption process, we encourage you to register your trip with the Department of State. Travel registration makes it possible to contact you if necessary. Whether there's a family emergency in the United States, or a crisis in Armenia, registration assists the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in reaching you.

Registration is free and can be done online.

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After Adoption

What does Armenia require of the adoptive parents after the adoption? 

According to Armenian law, there are no post-adoption requirements for intercountry adoptions.

What resources are available to assist families after the adoption?

Many adoptive parents find it important to find support after the adoption. Take advantage of all the resources available to your family -- whether it's another adoptive family, a support group, an advocacy organization, or your religious or community services.

Here are some good places to start your support group search:

Note: Inclusion of non-U.S. Government links does not imply endorsement of contents.

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Contact Information

U.S. Embassy in Armenia
1 American Avenue
Yerevan, Republic of Armenia
Tel: (+374 10) 464-700, 494-686
Fax: (+374 10) 464-742, 464-737
Email: consular@usa.am
Interner: https://am.usembassy.gov/

Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia
Vazgen Sargsyan 3/8
YEREVAN 0010
Republic of Armenia
Yerevan, Armenia
Tel: (374 10) 56-53-83 or 52-68-31

Embassy of the Republic of Armenia
2225 R Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008, USA
Tel: (202) 319-1976
Fax: (202) 319-2982
Email: armconsul@speakeasy.net
Internet: http://www.armeniaemb.org

Armenian Consulate General
50 North La Cienega Boulevard, Suite 210
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
Tel: (310) 657-7320
Email: armconla@aol.com

Office of Children's Issues
U.S. Department of State  
CA/OCS/CI  
SA-17, 9th Floor  
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Tel: 1-888-407-4747
E-mail: AskCI@state.gov
http://adoption.state.gov

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
For questions about immigration procedures, call the National Customer Service Center (NCSC)
1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833)

Reciprocity Schedule

Select a visa category below to find the visa issuance fee, number of entries, and validity period for visas issued to applicants from this country*/area of authority.

Explanation of Terms

Visa Classification: The type of nonimmigrant visa you are applying for.

Fee: The reciprocity fee, also known as the visa issuance fee, you must pay. This fee is in addition to the nonimmigrant visa application fee (MRV fee).

Number of Entries: The number of times you may seek entry into the United States with that visa. "M" means multiple times. If there is a number, such as "One", you may apply for entry one time with that visa.

Validity Period: This generally means the visa is valid, or can be used, from the date it is issued until the date it expires, for travel with that visa. If your Validity Period is 60 months, your visa will be valid for 60 months from the date it is issued.

Visa Classifications
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
K
L
M
N
O
P
Q
R
S
T
U
V
 
Visa
Classification
Fee Number
of Entries
Validity
Period
A-1 None Multiple 60 Months 
A-2 None Multiple 60 Months 
A-3 1 None Multiple 24 Months
B-1 None Multiple 120 Months
B-2 None Multiple 120 Months
B-1/B-2 None Multiple 120 Months
C-1 None Multiple 120 Months
C-1/D N/A N/A N/A
C-2 None Multiple 12 Months
C-3 None Multiple 60 Months
CW-1 11 None Multiple 12 Months
CW-2 11 None Multiple 12 Months
D None Multiple 120 Months
E-1 2 No Treaty N/A N/A
E-2 2 None Multiple 60 Months
E-2C 12 None Multiple 12 Months
F-1 None Multiple 60 Months
F-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-1 None Multiple 60 Months 
G-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-3 None Multiple 60 Months
G-4 None Multiple 60 Months
G-5 1 None Multiple 24 Months
H-1B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-1C None Multiple 12 Months 3
H-2A None N/A N/A3
H-2B None N/A N/A3
H-2R None Multiple 12 Months 3
H-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
I None Multiple 60 Months
J-1 4 None Multiple 60 Months
J-2 4 None Multiple 60 Months
K-1 None One 6 Months
K-2 None One 6 Months
K-3 None Multiple 24 Months
K-4 None Multiple 24 Months
L-1 None Multiple 60 Months
L-2 None Multiple 60 Months
M-1 None Multiple 60 Months
M-2 None Multiple 60 Months
N-8 $50.00 Multiple 12 Months C
N-9 $50.00 Multiple 12 Months C
NATO 1-7 N/A N/A N/A
O-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
Q-1 6 None Multiple 60 Months 3
R-1 None Multiple 60 Months
R-2 None Multiple 60 Months
S-5 7 None One 1 Month
S-6 7 None One 1 Month
S-7 7 None One 1 Month
T-1 9 N/A N/A N/A
T-2 None One 6 Months
T-3 None One 6 Months
T-4 None One 6 Months
T-5 None One 6 Months
T-6 None One 6 Months
TD 5 N/A N/A N/A
U-1 None Multiple 60 Months
U-2 None Multiple 60 Months
U-3 None Multiple 60 Months
U-4 None Multiple 60 Months
U-5 None Multiple 60 Months
V-1 None Multiple 120 Months
V-2 None Multiple 120 Months 8
V-3 None Multiple 120 Months 8
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Country Specific Footnotes
  1. Diplomats and others entitled to A-1 visas are entitled to 60 month, multiple entry visas. Diplomatic couriers may only be issued A-1 visas valid for multiple entries within 12 months, or for one entry within three months, depending on the request from the host government.

  2. Principal resident representative and members of the immediate family receive visas valid for 60 months, multiple entries. Others classified G-1 receive visas valid for 24 months, multiple entries.

  3. Tiered Fee Schedule for N-8 and N-9 Visas:

    Fee Number
    of Applications
    Validity
    Period
    $0.00 One 3 Months
    $50.00 Multiple 12 Months

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.

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Visa Category Footnotes
  1. The validity of A-3, G-5, and NATO 7 visas may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the person who is employing the applicant. The "employer" would have one of the following visa classifications:

    • A-1
    • A-2
    • G-1 through G-4
    • NATO 1 through NATO 6

  2. An E-1 and E-2 visa may be issued only to a principal alien who is a national of a country having a treaty, or its equivalent, with the United States. E-1 and E-2 visas may not be issued to a principal alien if he/she is a stateless resident. The spouse and children of an E-1 or E-2 principal alien are accorded derivative E-1 or E-2 status following the reciprocity schedule, including any reciprocity fees, of the principle alien’s country of nationality.  

    Example: John Doe is a national of the country of Z that has an E-1/E-2 treaty with the U.S. His wife and child are nationals of the country of Y which has no treaty with the U.S. The wife and child would, therefore, be entitled to derivative status and receive the same reciprocity as Mr. Doe, the principal visa holder.  

  3. The validity of H-1 through H-3, O-1 and O-2, P-1 through P-3, and Q visas may not exceed the period of validity of the approved petition or the number of months shown, whichever is less.

    Under 8 CFR §214.2, H-2A and H-2B petitions may generally only be approved for nationals of countries that the Secretary of Homeland Security has designated as participating countries. The current list of eligible countries is available on USCIS's website for both H-2A and H-2B visas. Nationals of countries not on this list may be the beneficiary of an approved H-2A or H2-B petition in limited circumstances at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security if specifically named on the petition.  

    Derivative H-4, L-2, O-3, and P-4 visas, issued to accompanying or following-to-join spouses and children, may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the principal alien.

  4. There is no reciprocity fee for the issuance of a J visa if the alien is a United States Government grantee or a participant in an exchange program sponsored by the United States Government.

    Also, there is no reciprocity fee for visa issuance to an accompanying or following-to-join spouse or child (J-2) of an exchange visitor grantee or participant.

    In addition, an applicant is eligible for an exemption from the MRV fee if he or she is participating in a State Department, USAID, or other federally funded educational and cultural exchange program (program serial numbers G-1, G-2, G-3 and G-7).

    However, all other applicants with U.S. Government sponsorships, including other J-visa applicants, are subject to the MRV processing fee.

  5. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Canadian and Mexican nationals coming to engage in certain types of professional employment in the United States may be admitted in a special nonimmigrant category known as the "trade NAFTA" or "TN" category. Their dependents (spouse and children) accompanying or following to join them may be admitted in the "trade dependent" or "TD" category whether or not they possess Canadian or Mexican nationality. Except as noted below, the number of entries, fees and validity for non-Canadian or non-Mexican family members of a TN status holder seeking TD visas should be based on the reciprocity schedule of the TN principal alien.

    Canadian Nationals

    Since Canadian nationals generally are exempt from visa requirement, a Canadian "TN' or "TD" alien does not require a visa to enter the United States. However, the non-Canadian national dependent of a Canadian "TN", unless otherwise exempt from the visa requirement, must obtain a "TD" visa before attempting to enter the United States. The standard reciprocity fee and validity period for all non-Canadian "TD"s is no fee, issued for multiple entries for a period of 36 months, or for the duration of the principal alien's visa and/or authorized period of stay, whichever is less. See 'NOTE' under Canadian reciprocity schedule regarding applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality.

    Mexican Nationals

    Mexican nationals are not visa-exempt. Therefore, all Mexican "TN"s and both Mexican and non-Mexican national "TD"s accompanying or following to join them who are not otherwise exempt from the visa requirement (e.g., the Canadian spouse of a Mexican national "TN") must obtain nonimmigrant visas.

    Applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality, who have a permanent resident or refugee status in Canada/Mexico, may not be accorded Canadian/Mexican reciprocity, even when applying in Canada/Mexico. The reciprocity fee and period for "TD" applicants from Libya is $10.00 for one entry over a period of 3 months. The Iranian and Iraqi "TD" is no fee with one entry over a period of 3 months.

  6. Q-2 (principal) and Q-3 (dependent) visa categories are in existence as a result of the 'Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program Act of 1998'. However, because the Department anticipates that virtually all applicants for this special program will be either Irish or U.K. nationals, the Q-2 and Q-3 categories have been placed only in the reciprocity schedules for those two countries. Q-2 and Q-3 visas are available only at the Embassy in Dublin and the Consulate General in Belfast.

  7. No S visa may be issued without first obtaining the Department's authorization.

  8. V-2 and V-3 status is limited to persons who have not yet attained their 21st birthday. Accordingly, the period of validity of a V-2 or V-3 visa must be limited to expire on or before the applicant's twenty-first birthday.

  9. Posts may not issue a T-1 visa. A T-1 applicant must be physically present in the United States, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands or a U.S. port of entry, where he/she will apply for an adjustment of status to that of a T-1. The following dependents of a T-1 visa holder, however, may be issued a T visa at a U.S. consular office abroad:

    • T-2 (spouse)
    • T-3 (child)
    • T-4 (parent)
  10. The validity of NATO-5 visas may not exceed the period of validity of the employment contract or 12 months, whichever is less.

  11. The validity of CW-1 and CW-2 visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (12 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

  12. The validity of E-2C visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (24 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

 

 

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General Documents

Civil documents, except as noted below, are available in Armenia. Certified copies of available documents may be exported. Certified copies of original documents can be obtained at a local notary office upon presenting the original documents. The Ministry of Justice is responsible for the apostille of certified copies.

Note: Except as indicated, each of the documents mentioned below is available only to the individual concerned or to his/her duly empowered agent. A local legal representative may obtain the document on behalf of the individual concerned on the latter’s written power of attorney. 

Birth, Death, Burial Certificates

Available. All the above-mentioned certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. There is one exception: In Yerevan, death certificates may be obtained at the Civic Status Registration Department at the “Public Special Service” CJSC (also known as the funeral bureau) of the Municipality of Yerevan located at 18 Arshakunyats Avenue, Yerevan, Armenia. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Marriage, Divorce Certificates

Available. All the above-mentioned certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Same-sex marriage is not recognized in Armenia.

Adoption Certificates
Available. Adoption certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Potential adoptive parents are granted the right to apply for an adoption certificate upon the basis of a court decision (and the entry of that court’s decision into force). If the adoptive parent/s so desire, the Civic Status Registration Department will issue a new birth certificate for the adopted child that shows them as the parents and does not indicate the child was adopted. Please see the country specific adoption sheet for more details. 
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Identity Card

See "Passports & Other Travel Documents."

Police, Court, Prison Records

Police Certificates 

Available. Requests for Armenian police records should be submitted to the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia (RA MFA):

  1. In person Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10.00 to 12.00 in the reception hall of the administrative building of MFA on Amiryan Street in Yerevan;
  2. By mail to Consular Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government House Republic Square, Yerevan 0010, Armenia;
  3. Online at http://www.mfa.am/en/clearance/.

The certificate is generally available with five working days and fees are dependent on the delivery requirements.  Details about documentary requirements, fees, delivery options, and the online application form are available at the MFA’s website: http://www.mfa.am/en/clearance/.

Applicants residing outside of Armenia can make their requests through Armenian embassies or Consulates General (listed here: http://www.mfa.am/en/by-countries/) or online (http://www.mfa.am/en/clearance/) The process normally takes five working days plus shipping time.  

Court Records

Available. Court records, usually a certified copy of a judgment of the court, can be obtained from the court where the decision was made.

Under Armenian law, prior criminal records may be expunged under several different sets of circumstances after a certain period of time has passed since the end of the sentence; in the case of suspended sentences, after the expiry of the probation period after parole; in the case of a sentence other than imprisonment, one year; in the case of a not grave or medium-gravity crime, after three years; in the case of a grave crime, five years; in the case of a particularly grave crime, eight years. Thus, if a person committed, for instance, a grave crime and more than five years have passed since the completion of her/his sentence, the MFA’s police certificate will not show a record regarding this crime. 

Military Records

Available. All male citizens of Armenia, aged 16 to 18 are issued a military registration card. The military registration cards of persons aged 18 to 27 who have not yet served in the Army contain information on the legal basis of their deferment of military service.

All male citizens of Armenia, except as noted above, over age 20 should have a military booklet, (a military service document, also known as voyenni billet in Russian) which contains information on the terms of service and/or discharge. After turning 27, persons holding registration cards with legal deferment stamps will also be issued a military booklet. 

Passports & Other Travel Documents

There are four types of documents that allow individuals to reside in Armenia:

  1. regular passport;
  2. residency permits;
  3. non-citizen certificates (issued to refugees);
  4. national ID cards. 

All Armenian citizens 16 and older are issued a regular passport by the passport agency of their local police department. This passport is for internal and, if an exit permit stamp is obtained, external use and is valid for five years. Holders of Armenian passports can apply at any time to renew, change, or extend his/her passport or exit permit stamp, regardless of passport condition or validity period.  Armenian citizens must submit their old passports to the passport agency for verification before receiving a new passport. Armenian diplomatic passports are valid for five years and cannot be extended.

Armenian citizens under the age of 16 are issued passports to travel abroad. These passports are valid for three years. Armenian citizens under the age of 16 need to have only one parent’s (or other legal representative’s) consent to apply for a passport.  

Residence permits for aliens are available in three types:

  1. temporary: valid for one year, with the possibility to extend for an additional year
  2. permanent: valid for five years, with the possibility to extend for an additional five years,
  3. special residency passports: valid for ten years with the possibility to extend for another ten years. 

Other Records

Change of Name Certificates

Available. Change of Name certificates are issued by the Ministry of Justice’s Civic Status Registration Department (also known as ZAGS) having jurisdiction over the locality where the individual resides. It is also possible to get duplicates of these certificates. 

Persons 18 years old and over can apply to the appropriate Civic Status Registration Department for a Change of Name certificate. Applicants can change their first, last and father’s name. Persons 16 to 18 years of age need their parents’ consent. 

Visa Issuing Posts

Yerevan (Embassy)

Address: 1st American avenue, Yerevan 0082

Phone Number: +37410464700

 

 

Visa Services

Processing all types of Immigrant and Non-Immigrant Visas. Yerevan is one of the four Iranian-designated posts processing every type of IV and NIV visas.

Foreign Consular Office Contact Information

Washington, D.C. (202) 319-1976 ext. 111 (202) 319-8330

Glendale, CA (818) 265-5900 (818) 265-3800

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Yerevan
1 American Avenue
Yerevan 0082, Republic of Armenia
Telephone
+(374) 10-464-700
Emergency
+(374) 10-494-444 and during business
hours (M-F 9am-5:30pm) +(374) 10-494-685
Fax
+(374) 10-464-742
Armenia Country Map

Learn about your destination
Additional Information for Reciprocity

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.