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International Travel

English

Country Information

Barbados

Country Information

Barbados
Barbados
Last Updated: June 1, 2016
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Embassy Messages
Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

Must be valid at time of entry

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

1 page required for entry stamp

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

Not required for stays under 6 months

VACCINATIONS:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

None

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Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Bridgetown

Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.
Telephone: +(246) 227-4399
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(246) 227-4000
Fax: +(246) 431-0179

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Destination Description

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

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Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Passports and visa: U.S. citizens must have a valid U.S. passport to enter Barbados. No visa is needed to enter Barbados for stays up to 6 months.

NOTE: Be aware that Caribbean cruises that begin and end in the United States (closed loop cruises) do not require that you travel with a valid passport. However, should you need to disembark due to an emergency and you do not have a valid passport, you may encounter difficulties entering or remaining in a foreign country. You may also have difficulty attempting to re-enter the United States by air because many airlines will require a valid passport before allowing you to board the aircraft. As such, we strongly recommend that you always travel abroad with your valid passport.

HIV/AIDS: Some HIV/AIDS entry restrictions exist for visitors to and foreign residents of Barbados.  Please contact the Embassy of Barbados before you travel at:

2144 Wyoming Avenue N.W.
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 939-9200 through 9202

Find information on dual nationality,  prevention of international child abduction,  and Customs Information  on our websites. 

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Safety and Security

Crime: Crime in Barbados is characterized primarily by petty theft and street crime. Incidents of violent crime, including rape and armed robbery, do occur. Do not leave valuables unattended in public areas,unsecured hotel rooms or in rental homes.

The U.S. Embassy has directed its staff to avoid the following areas at all times:  Crab Hill, St. Lucy and The Ivy, St Michael. The Embassy has also directed its staff to avoid three additional areas at night:  Nelson Street, Wellington Street, and Jolly Rogers Cruises. The Embassy has advised its staff to exercise extreme caution in the following areas: New Orleans, Deacons, Black Rock, Pine, Carrington Village, and Green Fields.

Don’t buy counterfeit and pirated goods.  These are illegal in the United States, and you may also be breaking local law.

Victims of Crime: Report crimes to the local police at 211 and contact the U.S. Embassy at (246) 227-4000. 

The emergency lines in Barbados are: Fire: 311, Police: 211, Ambulance: 511.

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

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 U.S.
  • 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 at (246) 227-4000.

For further information:

Watersports Advisory: You should carefully assess the potential risks inherent in recreational water activities and measure your participation in them against your physical capabilities and skills. Never venture out alone, particularly at isolated beaches or far out to sea. Avoid entering the water above your waist if you have been drinking and always be mindful of jet ski traffic in the area. When in doubt, stay out!  

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Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, 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.

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

Persons violating Barbados laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or imprisoned. Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Barbados are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines. Also, be aware that it is against the law, even for children, to dress in camouflage clothing or carry items made with camouflage material.

Firearms: Firearms entry restrictions may exist. Please contact the Embassy of Barbados before you travel.

Faith-Based Travelers: See the Department of State’s International Religious Freedom Report.

LGBTI Travelers: Although rarely enforced, the law criminalizes consensual same-sex sexual activity between adults with penalties of up to life imprisonment No laws prohibit discrimination against a person on the basis of real or perceived sexual orientation in employment, housing, education, or health care. Activists reported that stigma against LGBT persons persists. Activists reported few violent incidents but suggested that social stigma and fear of retribution or reprisal due to their sexual orientation rendered the problem underreported.

Anecdotal evidence suggested LGBT persons faced discrimination in employment, housing, and access to education and health care. Activists suggested that while many individuals lived open LGBT lifestyles, disapprobation by police officers and societal discrimination against LGBT persons occurred.

See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance. Access to buildings, pedestrian paths and transportation is extremely difficult for persons with disabilities. Sidewalks (if they exist) are very uneven and will only occasionally have ramps at intersections. Pedestrian crossings are also very infrequent and can be poorly marked. Buses and taxis do not have special accommodations for disabled persons.

The Town and Country Planning Department set provisions for all public buildings to include accessibility to persons with disabilities. As a result, many new buildings have ramps, reserved parking, and special sanitary facilities for such persons.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers

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Health

We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare and Medicaid programs do not apply overseas and that doctors and hospital will expect immediate cash payment for health services.

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas.  We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

The main medical facility in Barbados is Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Medical care is good for the region, but medical transport can take hours to respond and ambulance attendants are prohibited from applying lifesaving techniques during transport.

Chikungunya  dengue fever, and the zika virus are all present on the island. Travelers should carry and use CDC recommended insect repellents.

Zika Virus: Zika virus is a mosquito-borne illness that can be spread from a pregnant woman to her unborn baby as well as through sexual contact. The CDC has concluded that the Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects in some fetuses and babies born to infected mothers. For additional information about Zika, including travel advisories, visit the CDC website

Carry prescription medication in original packaging, along 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. Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information.

Traffic Laws: Driving in Barbados is on the left-hand side of the road.  Barbados traffic law requires that vehicles involved in an accident remain unmoved until the police arrive. Drivers in Barbados are extremely courteous to pedestrians and will usually stop anywhere for anyone attempting to cross a road.  A stopped vehicle, whether travelling in the same or the opposite direction, might indicate that pedestrians are crossing and you should exercise caution.

Public Transportation: Registered taxis and large public buses are generally safe. Private vans and small buses are often crowded and tend to travel at excessive speeds. Travelers are cautioned against riding in private mini-buses, known as “Z buses,” as the owners frequently drive erratically.

See our Road Safety page for more information.  Visit the website of the country’s national tourist office and national authority responsible for road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight
:
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Barbados’s Civil Aviation Authority as not being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Barbados’s air carrier operations.  Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Hague Convention Participation
Party to the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
U.S. Treaty Partner under the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
Learn why the Hague Abduction Convention Matters.
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 Bridgetown

Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.
Telephone: +(246) 227-4399
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(246) 227-4000
Fax: +(246) 431-0179

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General Information

Barbados is not a signatory to the Hague Abduction Convention.

For information concerning travel to Barbados, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, health conditions, currency and entry regulations, and crime and security, please see country-specific information for Barbados.

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Hague Abduction Convention

Barbados uses a common law system based on British law.  Divorce and custody cases are handled by the Family Division of the Supreme Court.

Terminology used in custody cases are similar to those used in the United States (i.e. “custody,” and “access”).   

In Barbados, parents who are legally married share custody of their children.  If the child is born out of wedlock, the mother has sole legal custody by operation law, absent a court order specifying otherwise. 

The Child Care Board and the Barbados Police are responsible for searching for missing children.

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Return

Children may acquire citizenship in Barbados through birth, descent, or naturalization.  All children born in Barbados are automatically citizens regardless of the nationality of the child’s parents.  If a child has a parent who is a citizen of Barbados, then the child acquires citizenship regardless of where he or she is born and regardless of the gender of the parent.  Parents of children born abroad must file paperwork with Barbados Immigration.  The Barbados Immigration Service can be contacted at:

Immigration Department
Careenage House, The Warf
Bridgetown, St. Michael
Barbados

Telephone: + (246) 434-4100

Dual nationality is recognized under Barbadian law.

Either parent can apply for a passport for their children without the consent of the other parent, and must prove their identity and their relationship to the child.  A parent may be restricted from obtaining a passport for a child by a court order regarding custody or that includes restrictions on the child leaving the jurisdiction.  Travel restrictions may be put in place by the Chief of Immigration.  In addition to a request from a court, an individual or his/her legal representative may request a travel restriction by submitting court documents (e.g. a custody order or court order regarding travel restrictions) to the Chief of Immigration.  Absent the submission of these documents to the Chief of Immigration, passports will generally be issued to any Barbadian who applies.

Children may not be entered on a parent’s passport.  All children are required to travel on their own passport, including when traveling in the region.

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Visitation/Access

Barbados does not have exit controls and parental consent is not required for a child to depart the country.

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Retaining an Attorney

Parental child abduction is not considered a criminal offense in Barbados, and the United States and Barbados do not share an extradition treaty.  However, Barbados will extradite Barbadian citizens subject to an Interpol notice.  A formal judicial request is required to extradite.  Local authorities may take action on Interpol notices to detain a child listed as a missing person in a yellow notice or to arrest an individual for whom there is red notice.  

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Mediation

Children may acquire citizenship in Barbados through birth, descent, or naturalization.  All children born in Barbados are automatically citizens regardless of the nationality of the child’s parents.  If a child has a parent who is a citizen of Barbados, then the child acquires citizenship regardless of where he or she is born and regardless of the gender of the parent.  Parents of children born abroad must file paperwork with Barbados Immigration.  The Barbados Immigration Service can be contacted at:

Immigration Department
Careenage House, The Warf
Bridgetown, St. Michael
Barbados

Telephone: + (246) 434-4100

Dual nationality is recognized under Barbadian law.

Either parent can apply for a passport for their children without the consent of the other parent, and must prove their identity and their relationship to the child.  A parent may be restricted from obtaining a passport for a child by a court order regarding custody or that includes restrictions on the child leaving the jurisdiction.  Travel restrictions may be put in place by the Chief of Immigration.  In addition to a request from a court, an individual or his/her legal representative may request a travel restriction by submitting court documents (e.g. a custody order or court order regarding travel restrictions) to the Chief of Immigration.  Absent the submission of these documents to the Chief of Immigration, passports will generally be issued to any Barbadian who applies.

Children may not be entered on a parent’s passport.  All children are required to travel on their own passport, including when traveling in the region.

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?
No
Are Intercountry Adoptions between this country and the United States possible?
Both adoptions to the United States from Barbados and from the United States to Barbados are possible.
Is this country a U.S. Hague Partner?
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Hague Convention Information

Barbados is not a party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention or Convention). Under the Intercountry Adoption Universal Accreditation Act (UAA), which became effective on July 14, 2014, the accreditation requirement and standards, which previously only applied in Convention cases, now also apply in non-Convention or “orphan” cases. The UAA requires that an accredited or approved adoption service provider acts as a primary provider in every case, and that adoption service providers providing adoption services on behalf of prospective adoptive parents be accredited or approved, or be a supervised or exempted provider.  Adoption service providers and prospective adoptive parents should review the State Department’s Universal Accreditation Act of 2012 webpage for further information. Intercountry adoptions of children from non-Convention countries continue to be processed under the Orphan Process with the filing of the Forms I-600A and I-600.  However, adoption service providers should be aware of the information on the USCIS website on the impact on Form I-600A and Form I-600 adjudications under the UAA, including the requirement that all home studies, including home study updates and amendments, comply with the Convention home study requirements, which differ from the orphan home study requirements that were in effect before July 14, 2014.

Only citizens of countries with which Barbados has diplomatic or consular relations may adopt Barbadian children. The United States has diplomatic relations with Barbados.

U.S. Immigration Requirements For Intercountry Adoptions

To bring an adopted child to the United States from Barbados, you must meet certain suitability and eligibility requirements. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) determines who can adopt a child from another country and bring that child to live in the United States under U.S. immigration law.

Additionally, a child must meet the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law in order to be eligible to immigrate to the United States with an IR-3 or IR-4 immigrant visa.

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Who Can Adopt

Who Can Adopt

In addition to being found suitable and eligible to adopt by USCIS, prospective adoptive parents seeking to adopt from Barbados must meet the following requirements:

  • Residency: The adoption of a Barbadian child can take place in Barbados or in the applicants' country of residence. Applicants wishing to adopt a child in Barbados will be required to reside on the island for a period of at least 18 months. If applicants wish the adoption to take place in their country of residence, the applicants are required to come to Barbados for at least a few weeks in order to receive the child into their care and must attend the High Court hearing for the license to take the child out of Barbados for the purpose of adoption.
  • Age of Adopting Parents: Prospective adoptive parents who are already related to the child they plan to adopt must be at least 18 years old. Otherwise, at least one prospective adoptive parent must be 25 years old and at least 18 years older than the child.
  • Marriage: Both married and single people may adopt.
  • Income: None.
  • Other: None.
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Who Can Be Adopted

In addition to qualifying as an orphan under U.S. immigration law, the child must meet the following requirements of Barbados:

  • Relinquishment: None.
  • Abandonment: None.
  • Age of Adoptive Child: None. Please note that for a child to meet the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law, a Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative, must be filed on the child’s behalf while the child is under the age of 16 (or under the age of 18 if the child is the birth sibling of another adopted child who has immigrated or will immigrate based on adoption by the same adoptive parent(s)).
  • Sibling Adoptions:  None.
  • Special Needs or Medical Conditions: None.
  • Waiting Period or Foster Care:  None.

Caution: Prospective adoptive parents should be aware that not all children in orphanages or children’s homes are eligible for adoption. In many countries, birth parents place their child(ren) temporarily in an orphanage or children’s home due to financial or other hardship, intending that the child return home when this becomes possible. In such cases, the birth parent(s) have rarely relinquished their parental rights or consented to the adoption of their child(ren).

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How to Adopt

Barbados’s Adoption Authority
Child Care Board

The Process

The process for adopting a child from Barbados generally includes the following steps:

  1. Choose a U.S. Accredited or Approved Adoption Service Provider
  2. Apply to USCIS to be Found Suitable and Eligible to Adopt (Form I-600A)
  3. Apply to Barbados’ Authorities to Adopt and be Matched with a Child
  4. Adopt the Child in Barbados
  5. Apply for Your Child to be Found Eligible to Immigrate to the United States as an Orphan (Form I-600)
  6. Apply for a U.S. Immigrant Visa for Your Child and Bring Your Child Home

1.  Choose a U.S. Accredited or Approved Adoption Service Provider

Before taking steps to adopt a child from Barbados, you should select a U.S. accredited or approved adoption service provider to be the primary provider in your case. As of July 14, 2014, a primary provider is required in every intercountry adoption case under the UAA, unless an exception applies. The primary provider is responsible for:

  • Ensuring that all six adoption services defined at 22 CFR 96.2 are provided;
  • Supervising and being responsible for supervised providers where used (see 22 CFR 96.14); and
  • Developing and implementing a service plan in accordance with 22 CFR 96.44

For more information on primary providers and the UAA, please see Universal Accreditation Act of 2012.

2.  Apply to USCIS to be Found Suitable and Eligible to Adopt

In order to adopt a child from Barbados, you will need to meet the requirements of the Government of Barbados and U.S. immigration law. 

To meet U.S. immigration requirements, you may also choose to file a Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of an Orphan Petition, with USCIS to be found suitable and eligible to adopt before you identify a child to adopt. You may also choose to file the Form I-600 petition along with all the required Form I-600A application supporting documentation, including an approved home study, once you have been matched with a child and have obtained all the necessary documentation. Please see the USCIS website for more information about filing options. Regardless of which approach you take, the home study must meet the same requirements. As of July 14, 2014, unless an exception applies, the home study must comply with the requirements in 8 CFR 204.311 and 22 CFR Part 96.47.

3.  Apply to Barbados’s Authorities to Adopt and be Matched with a Child

If you are found suitable and eligible to adopt under U.S. law, you must also submit an adoption application to the Child Care Board of Barbados to be found eligible to adopt by Barbados.

If a child is eligible for intercountry adoption, the competent adoption authority or other authorized entity in Barbados will review your adoption dossier and, if an appropriate match is found, will provide you with a referral. We encourage families to consult with a medical professional and their adoption service provider to understand the needs of the specific child but each family must decide for itself whether it will be able to meet the needs of, and provide a permanent home for, a specific child, and must conform to the recommendations in the home study for the number of children and capacity to deal with any special needs of an adoptive child. Learn more about Health Considerations.

 The child must be eligible to be adopted according to Barbados’ requirements, as described in the Who Can Be Adopted section. The child must also meet the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law.

4.  Adopt the Child in Barbados

The process for finalizing the adoption in Barbados generally includes the following:

  • Role of Adoption Authority: The laws that govern adoptions in Barbados are the Child Care Act and the Adoption Act. The Child Care Board administers these laws. Upon being notified of a prospective parent's intent to adopt, the Child Care Board will contract a social welfare agency abroad to do a home study. The home study conducted for U.S. immigration procedures (form I-600A) is acceptable. Upon completion of the home study, the adoptive parents should submit it to the Child Care Board for review. After the Child Care Board approves the home study, the Child Care Board will identify a child based on the adoptive parents' requests.
  • Role of the Court: The adoptive parents (using an attorney) will need to obtain an order from a Barbadian court authorizing the care and custody of the minor after they have been matched with a child by the Child Care Board. The adoptive parents are required to come to Barbados to attend the High Court hearing for the license and to receive the child into their care.
  • Role of Adoption Agencies: There are no private adoption agencies operating in Barbados.

    As of July 14, 2014, unless an exception applies, there must be a U.S. accredited or approved adoption service provider acting as the primary provider in every case. Also, any agency or person providing an adoption service on behalf of prospective adoptive parents in any Convention or non-Convention case must be accredited or approved, or be a supervised or exempted provider. Adoption service means any one of the following  six services:
    • Identifying a child for adoption and arranging an adoption;
    • Securing the necessary consent to termination of parental rights and to adoption;
    • Performing a background study on a child or a home study on a prospective adoptive parent(s), and reporting on such a study;
    • Making non-judicial determinations of the best interests of a child and the appropriateness of an adoptive placement for the child;
    • Monitoring a case after a child has been placed with prospective adoptive parent(s) until final adoption; or
    • When necessary because of a disruption before final adoption, assuming custody and providing (including facilitating the provision of) child care or any other social service pending an alternative placement. 22 CFR 96.2 Definitions.
  • Time Frame: It will typically take non-Barbadians, including U.S. citizens, between six months and a year to adopt a Barbadian child, but it can take longer due to sometimes-lengthy Barbadian court procedures.
  • Adoption Fees: Average adoption attorney fees in Barbados are approximately U.S. $3000, which includes court fees. However, fees may vary depending on the attorney. It is necessary for the applicants to use an attorney in Barbados who will apply for the license on their behalf. There are no fees for filing adoption paperwork with the Child Care Board.

    Prospective adoptive parents are advised to obtain detailed receipts for all fees and donations paid, either by themselves directly or through their U.S. adoption service provider, and to raise any concerns regarding any payment that you believe may be contrary to U.S. law, or the law of Barbados, with your adoption service provider. Please also refer to information concerning the Hague Complaint Registry. Improper payments may have the appearance of buying a child, violate applicable law, and could put all future adoptions in Barbados at risk. The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, for instance, makes it unlawful to bribe foreign government officials to obtain or retain business. Further, the UAA and IAA make it unlawful to improperly influence relinquishment of parental rights, parental consent relating to adoption of a child, or a decision by an entity performing Central Authority functions.
  • Documents Required:  A completed home study and supporting documents:
    • Birth certificate of each prospective adoptive parent;
    • Marriage certificate and divorce documents (if applicable);
    • Medical report of each prospective adoptive parent, to be conducted in the parent's country of residence;
    • Police reference;
    • Three (3) personal references known for a period of at least five (5) years and not family members;
    • Statement of applicant(s) income.

Note: Additional documents may be requested.

  • Authentication of Documents:  You may be asked to provide proof that a document from the United States is authentic. The U.S Department of State’s Authentications Office has information on the subject.


5. Apply for Your Child to be Found Eligible for Immigration to the United States as an Orphan: After you finalize the adoption in Barbados, USCIS must determine whether the child meets the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law in order for the child to immigrate to the United States. You will need to file a Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative. At the time you file your Form I-600 petition, the adjudicating officer will determine whether the UAA applies or if your case is UAA grandfathered.  For more information on UAA grandfathering and transition cases, please see Universal Accreditation Act of 2012. Unless an exception applies, you must identify a primary provider in your case and the adjudicating officer may ask for the name and contact information of the primary provider if not provided in your Form I-600 petition. This information is required and, without it, your Form I-600 petition cannot be approved.

If you have an approved, valid Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of an Orphan Petition, you may file your Form I-600 petition either in the United States with USCIS, or  in person at the U.S.Embassy in Bridgetown, Barbados.

When a Form I-600 petition is adjudicated by USCIS in the United States, the consular section in Bridgetown, Barbados must complete a Form I-604, Determination on Child for Adoption (sometimes informally referred to as an orphan determination), to verify the child’s orphan status.  When a Form I-600 petition is adjudicated by an international USCIS office, USCIS generally completes the Form I-604 determination.

For Form I-600 petitions filed with the Embassy’s consular section, the consular officer must complete the Form I-604 determination after you file your Form I-600 petition. Conducting the Form I-604 determination is a critical part of the orphan adoption process. It can take weeks to complete, depending upon the circumstances of your case. Consular officers appreciate that families are eager to bring their adopted child home as quickly as possible. Some of the factors that may contribute to the length of the process include prevailing fraud patterns in the country of origin, civil unrest or security concerns that restrict travel to certain areas of the country, and the number of determinations performed by available staff. Consular officers make every effort to conduct them as quickly and thoroughly as possible. You are advised to keep your travel plans flexible while awaiting the results.

6.  Apply for a U.S. Immigrant Visa for Your Child and Bring Your Child Home

Now that your adoption is complete and the Form I-604 determination has been completed finding that your child meets the legal definition of an orphan for immigration purposes, there are a few more steps to take before you and your child can head home. Specifically, you need to apply for three documents before your child 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.

If the adoption is completed in Barbados, the adoptive parents should apply to the Office of the Registrar for a new birth certificate. If the adoption is to take place in the adoptive parents' country of residence, the child must have a passport issued by Barbados Immigration in order to apply for an immigrant visa.

Barbados Passport

Your child is not yet a U.S. citizen, so he/she will need a travel document or passport from Barbados.

U.S. Immigrant Visa

After you obtain the new birth certificate and passport for your child and you have filed Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative, you then need to apply for a U.S. immigrant visa for your child from the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown. This immigrant visa allows your child to travel home with you and be admitted to the United States as your child. As part of this process, you must provide the consular officer the Panel Physician’s medical report on the child.

Before coming for your child’s immigrant visa interview, please complete an Electronic Immigrant Visa Application (DS-260) online at the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC). If you filed a Form I-600 petition in the United States, you should receive a letter from the National Visa Center (NVC) confirming receipt of the petition and assignment of a case number and an invoice ID number. You will need this information to log into CEAC to file the DS-260 for your child. An adoptive parent should fill out these forms in your child's name. Answer every item on the form. If information is not applicable, please write “N/A” in the block. Print and bring the DS-260 form confirmation page to the visa interview. Please review the DS-260 FAQs, our Online Immigrant Visa Forms page, or contact the NVC at NVCAdoptions@state.gov or +1-603-334-0700 if you have questions about completing the online DS-260 form.

Visa issuance after the final interview generally takes 24 hours. It is not usually possible to provide the visa to adoptive parents on the same day as the immigrant visa interview. Adoptive parents should verify current processing times with the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown before making final travel arrangements.

Child Citizenship Act

For adoptions finalized abroad prior to the child’s entry into the United States: An adopted child residing in the United States in the legal and physical custody of the U.S. citizen parent pursuant to a lawful admission for permanent residence generally will acquire U.S. citizenship automatically upon entry into the United States if the child otherwise meets the requirements of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000, including the child is under the age of eighteen.

For adoptions finalized after the child’s entry into the United States: You will need to complete an adoption following your child’s entry into the United States and before the child turns eighteen for the child (if he or she otherwise meets the requirements of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000) to automatically acquire U.S. citizenship.

Read more about the Child Citizenship Act of 2000

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Traveling Abroad

Applying for Your U.S. Passport

U.S. citizens are required to enter and depart the United States on a valid U.S. passport.  Once your child has acquired U.S. citizenship, s/he will need a U.S. passport for any international travel. 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 Department of State’s Passport Application Wizard will 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 a Visa to Travel to Barbados

In addition to a U.S. passport, you may also need to obtain a visa. Where required, visas are affixed to your passport and allow you to enter a foreign nation. To find information about obtaining a visa for Barbados, see the Department of State’s Country Specific Information.

Staying Safe on Your Trip

Before you travel, it is always a good practice to investigate the local conditions, laws, political landscape, and culture of the country. The Department of State provides Country Specific Information for every country in the world about various issues, including health conditions, crime, 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 enroll with the Department of State through our Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive important information from the Embassy about safety conditions in your destination country. Enrollment makes it possible for the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in Barbados, to contact you in an emergency, whether natural disaster, civil unrest, or family emergency.

Enrollment is free and can be done online via the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).

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After Adoption

Post-Adoption Resources

Many adoptive parents find it important to find support after the adoption. There are many public and private nonprofit post-adoption services available for children and their families. There are also numerous adoptive family support groups and adoptee organizations active in the United States that provide a network of options for adoptees who seek out other adoptees from the same country of origin. Take advantage of all the resources available to your family, whether it is another adoptive family, a support group, an advocacy organization, or your religious or community services. Your primary provider can provide or point you to post- placement/post-adoption services to help your adopted child and your family transition smoothly and deal effectively with the many adjustments required in an intercountry adoption.

Here are some places to start your support group search:

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

COMPLAINTS

If you have concerns about your adoption process, we ask that you share this information with the Embassy in Bridgetown, particularly if it involves possible fraud or misconduct specific to your child’s case. The Department of State takes all allegations of fraud or misconduct seriously. Our Adoption Comment Page provides several points of contact for adoptive families to comment on their adoption service provider, their experience applying for their child’s visa, or about the Form I-600 petition process.

The Hague Complaint Registry is an internet based registry for filing complaints about U.S. accredited or approved adoption service providers. If you think your provider's conduct may have been out of substantial compliance with accreditation standards, first submit your complaint in writing directly to your provider. If the complaint is not resolved through the provider's complaint process, you may file the complaint through the Hague Complaint Registry

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Contact Information

U.S. Embassy in Barbados

Consular Section
Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael, Barbados 
Tel: (246) 227-4000
Fax: (246) 431-0179
Email: consularbridge2@state.gov
Internet: https://bb.usembassy.gov/embassy/bridgetown/

Barbados Adoption Authority

Child Care Board
The Fred Edghill Building
Cheapside, Fontabelle, Barbados
Tel: 1 (246) 426-2577

Embassy of Barbados

2144 Wyoming Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Tel: (202) 939-9200
Fax: (202) 332-7467

Barbados also has consulates in: Los Angeles, Miami, and New York

Office of Children’s Issues

U.S. Department of State
CA/OCS/CI
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, D.C.  20522-1709
Email: Adoption@state.gov
Internet: adoption.state.gov

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

For questions about immigration procedures:
USCIS National Customer Service Center (NCSC)
Tel: 1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833)
Internet: uscis.gov

For questions about filing a Form I-600A application or I-600 petition:
USCIS National Benefits Center
Tel: 1-877-424-8374 (toll free); 1-816-251-2770 (local)
Email: NBC.Adoptions@uscis.dhs.gov

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 None Multiple 120 Months
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 No Treaty N/A N/A
E-2C 12 None Multiple 24 Months
F-1 None Multiple 36 Months
F-2 None Multiple 36 Months
G-1 None Multiple 48 Months
G-2 None Multiple 48 Months
G-3 None Multiple 48 Months
G-4 None Multiple 48 Months
G-5 1 None Multiple 24 Months
H-1B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-1C None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2A None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2R None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
I None Multiple 48 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 36 Months
M-2 None Multiple 36 Months
N-8 None Multiple 48 Months
N-9 None Multiple 48 Months
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 15 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 48 Months
U-2 None Multiple 48 Months
U-3 None Multiple 48 Months
U-4 None Multiple 48 Months
U-5 None Multiple 48 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

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

Please check back for update.

Birth, Death, Burial Certificates

Birth
 

Available

Fees:  There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Document Name:  Birth Certificate

Issuing Authority:  Registrar of the Supreme Court, located at Whitepark Road, St. Michael.
 

Death/Burial
 

Available: only for those persons who died before the year 1925.

Fees: There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Document Name:  Death Certificate

Issuing Authority: Registrar of the Supreme Court, Barbados

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: The certificate is a certified copy of the entry in the book of the parish church where the burial occurred.

Certified Copies Available: Yes

 

 

 

Marriage, Divorce Certificates

Marriage
 

Available

Fees: There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Document Name:  Certificate of Marriage

Issuing Authority: Registrar of the Supreme Court, Barbados

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: This certificate is a certified copy of an extract of the record of the officiating Marriage Officer. 


Divorce
 

Available

Fees: There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Issuing Authority: Registrar of the Supreme Court

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format:  Certified copy of the Decree Absolute.

 

 

 

Adoption Certificates

Unavailable: Once a final adoption order has been entered by a court, adoptive parents may apply for a new birth certificate listing them as parents of the adopted child at the Registrar of the Supreme Court.

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Identity Card

Enter text here.

Police, Court, Prison Records

Police Records


Available

Fees: BD $10.00 plus postage

Issuing Authority: Available from the Police Headquarters, Criminal Records Office, Coleridge St., Bridgetown.

Procedure for Obtaining:  Applicants must submit their name, date and place of birth, and addresses and dates of residence in Barbados. The application must be accompanied by a set of fingerprints that will be taken by a police officer at the time of application.

Court Records
 

Available

Issuing Authority: Applicants can apply for their records at the Supreme Court Complex, Whitepark Road St Michael.
 

Prison Records
 

Available

Issuing Authority: Available from the Superintendent of Prisons, Glendairy Prison, Station Hill, Barbados.

Comments: Name and dates of imprisonment must be included.

 

Military Records

Available

Issuing Authority: For those serving in the Barbados Defense Force, records are available from: The Adjutant, Barbados Defense Force, St. Anne's Fort, The Garrison, and Barbados. For those serving in the British Armed Forces, records are available from the appropriate British authority in London. (See United Kingdom).

Passports & Other Travel Documents

Types Available (Regular, Diplomatic, Official, etc.):

 

Other Records

Bapistmal Certificate
 

The certificate is a certified copy of an extract of the record of the church where the baptism occurred.  Baptismal certificates for persons born after 1890 are usually available from the church in which the baptism was performed.

Visa Issuing Posts

Post Title: Embassy of the United States Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean and the OECS

Address:

Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.

Phone Number:

Main switchboard: (246) 227-4000

Consular Section (Questions): (246) 227-4399

Consular Section Fax: (246) 431-0179

Visa Appointment Hotline (Only): (246) 227-4227

Public Affairs Section Fax: (246) 429-5316

Visa Services: Nonimmigrant and immigrant visa applications for nationals of Antigua and Barbuda are processed by the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown, Barbados.

Comments / Additional Information:

Consular Section Email:
 Non-Immigrant Visas - bridgetownniv@state.gov
 Immigrant Visas - bridgetowniv@state.gov
 American Citizen Services - bridgetownacs@state.gov

 

Visa Services

All visa categories for all of Barbados and the following:

  • Antigua and Barbuda (includes Redonda)
  • British Dependent Territories:
    • Anguilla
    • British Virgin Islands
    • Montserrat
    • Dominica
    • Dutch St. Maarten
    • French West Indies
    • Grenada (including Southern Grenadines)
    • Guadeloupe
    • Martinique
    • Saba
    • St. Barthelmy
    • St. Eustatius
    • St. Kitts and Nevis
    • St. Lucia
    • St. Martin
    • St. Vincent and the Grenadines

 

Foreign Consular Office Contact Information

Washington, DC (202) 939-9200 (202) 332-7467

Miami, FL (786) 515-1201 (305) 455-7975

New York, NY (212) 551-4325 (212) 867-8899

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Bridgetown
Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.
Telephone
+(246) 227-4399
Emergency
+(246) 227-4000
Fax
+(246) 431-0179
Barbados 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

Barbados
Barbados
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Embassy Messages
Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

Must be valid at time of entry

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

1 page required for entry stamp

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

Not required for stays under 6 months

VACCINATIONS:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

None

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Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Bridgetown

Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.
Telephone: +(246) 227-4399
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(246) 227-4000
Fax: +(246) 431-0179

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Destination Description

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

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Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Passports and visa: U.S. citizens must have a valid U.S. passport to enter Barbados. No visa is needed to enter Barbados for stays up to 6 months.

NOTE: Be aware that Caribbean cruises that begin and end in the United States (closed loop cruises) do not require that you travel with a valid passport. However, should you need to disembark due to an emergency and you do not have a valid passport, you may encounter difficulties entering or remaining in a foreign country. You may also have difficulty attempting to re-enter the United States by air because many airlines will require a valid passport before allowing you to board the aircraft. As such, we strongly recommend that you always travel abroad with your valid passport.

HIV/AIDS: Some HIV/AIDS entry restrictions exist for visitors to and foreign residents of Barbados.  Please contact the Embassy of Barbados before you travel at:

2144 Wyoming Avenue N.W.
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 939-9200 through 9202

Find information on dual nationality,  prevention of international child abduction,  and Customs Information  on our websites. 

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Safety and Security

Crime: Crime in Barbados is characterized primarily by petty theft and street crime. Incidents of violent crime, including rape and armed robbery, do occur. Do not leave valuables unattended in public areas,unsecured hotel rooms or in rental homes.

The U.S. Embassy has directed its staff to avoid the following areas at all times:  Crab Hill, St. Lucy and The Ivy, St Michael. The Embassy has also directed its staff to avoid three additional areas at night:  Nelson Street, Wellington Street, and Jolly Rogers Cruises. The Embassy has advised its staff to exercise extreme caution in the following areas: New Orleans, Deacons, Black Rock, Pine, Carrington Village, and Green Fields.

Don’t buy counterfeit and pirated goods.  These are illegal in the United States, and you may also be breaking local law.

Victims of Crime: Report crimes to the local police at 211 and contact the U.S. Embassy at (246) 227-4000. 

The emergency lines in Barbados are: Fire: 311, Police: 211, Ambulance: 511.

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

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 U.S.
  • 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 at (246) 227-4000.

For further information:

Watersports Advisory: You should carefully assess the potential risks inherent in recreational water activities and measure your participation in them against your physical capabilities and skills. Never venture out alone, particularly at isolated beaches or far out to sea. Avoid entering the water above your waist if you have been drinking and always be mindful of jet ski traffic in the area. When in doubt, stay out!  

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Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, 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.

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

Persons violating Barbados laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or imprisoned. Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Barbados are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines. Also, be aware that it is against the law, even for children, to dress in camouflage clothing or carry items made with camouflage material.

Firearms: Firearms entry restrictions may exist. Please contact the Embassy of Barbados before you travel.

Faith-Based Travelers: See the Department of State’s International Religious Freedom Report.

LGBTI Travelers: Although rarely enforced, the law criminalizes consensual same-sex sexual activity between adults with penalties of up to life imprisonment No laws prohibit discrimination against a person on the basis of real or perceived sexual orientation in employment, housing, education, or health care. Activists reported that stigma against LGBT persons persists. Activists reported few violent incidents but suggested that social stigma and fear of retribution or reprisal due to their sexual orientation rendered the problem underreported.

Anecdotal evidence suggested LGBT persons faced discrimination in employment, housing, and access to education and health care. Activists suggested that while many individuals lived open LGBT lifestyles, disapprobation by police officers and societal discrimination against LGBT persons occurred.

See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance. Access to buildings, pedestrian paths and transportation is extremely difficult for persons with disabilities. Sidewalks (if they exist) are very uneven and will only occasionally have ramps at intersections. Pedestrian crossings are also very infrequent and can be poorly marked. Buses and taxis do not have special accommodations for disabled persons.

The Town and Country Planning Department set provisions for all public buildings to include accessibility to persons with disabilities. As a result, many new buildings have ramps, reserved parking, and special sanitary facilities for such persons.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers

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Health

We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare and Medicaid programs do not apply overseas and that doctors and hospital will expect immediate cash payment for health services.

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas.  We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

The main medical facility in Barbados is Queen Elizabeth Hospital. Medical care is good for the region, but medical transport can take hours to respond and ambulance attendants are prohibited from applying lifesaving techniques during transport.

Chikungunya  dengue fever, and the zika virus are all present on the island. Travelers should carry and use CDC recommended insect repellents.

Zika Virus: Zika virus is a mosquito-borne illness that can be spread from a pregnant woman to her unborn baby as well as through sexual contact. The CDC has concluded that the Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects in some fetuses and babies born to infected mothers. For additional information about Zika, including travel advisories, visit the CDC website

Carry prescription medication in original packaging, along 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. Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information.

Traffic Laws: Driving in Barbados is on the left-hand side of the road.  Barbados traffic law requires that vehicles involved in an accident remain unmoved until the police arrive. Drivers in Barbados are extremely courteous to pedestrians and will usually stop anywhere for anyone attempting to cross a road.  A stopped vehicle, whether travelling in the same or the opposite direction, might indicate that pedestrians are crossing and you should exercise caution.

Public Transportation: Registered taxis and large public buses are generally safe. Private vans and small buses are often crowded and tend to travel at excessive speeds. Travelers are cautioned against riding in private mini-buses, known as “Z buses,” as the owners frequently drive erratically.

See our Road Safety page for more information.  Visit the website of the country’s national tourist office and national authority responsible for road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight
:
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Barbados’s Civil Aviation Authority as not being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Barbados’s air carrier operations.  Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Hague Convention Participation
Party to the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
U.S. Treaty Partner under the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
Learn why the Hague Abduction Convention Matters.
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 Bridgetown

Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.
Telephone: +(246) 227-4399
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(246) 227-4000
Fax: +(246) 431-0179

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General Information

Barbados is not a signatory to the Hague Abduction Convention.

For information concerning travel to Barbados, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, health conditions, currency and entry regulations, and crime and security, please see country-specific information for Barbados.

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Hague Abduction Convention

Barbados uses a common law system based on British law.  Divorce and custody cases are handled by the Family Division of the Supreme Court.

Terminology used in custody cases are similar to those used in the United States (i.e. “custody,” and “access”).   

In Barbados, parents who are legally married share custody of their children.  If the child is born out of wedlock, the mother has sole legal custody by operation law, absent a court order specifying otherwise. 

The Child Care Board and the Barbados Police are responsible for searching for missing children.

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Return

Children may acquire citizenship in Barbados through birth, descent, or naturalization.  All children born in Barbados are automatically citizens regardless of the nationality of the child’s parents.  If a child has a parent who is a citizen of Barbados, then the child acquires citizenship regardless of where he or she is born and regardless of the gender of the parent.  Parents of children born abroad must file paperwork with Barbados Immigration.  The Barbados Immigration Service can be contacted at:

Immigration Department
Careenage House, The Warf
Bridgetown, St. Michael
Barbados

Telephone: + (246) 434-4100

Dual nationality is recognized under Barbadian law.

Either parent can apply for a passport for their children without the consent of the other parent, and must prove their identity and their relationship to the child.  A parent may be restricted from obtaining a passport for a child by a court order regarding custody or that includes restrictions on the child leaving the jurisdiction.  Travel restrictions may be put in place by the Chief of Immigration.  In addition to a request from a court, an individual or his/her legal representative may request a travel restriction by submitting court documents (e.g. a custody order or court order regarding travel restrictions) to the Chief of Immigration.  Absent the submission of these documents to the Chief of Immigration, passports will generally be issued to any Barbadian who applies.

Children may not be entered on a parent’s passport.  All children are required to travel on their own passport, including when traveling in the region.

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Visitation/Access

Barbados does not have exit controls and parental consent is not required for a child to depart the country.

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Retaining an Attorney

Parental child abduction is not considered a criminal offense in Barbados, and the United States and Barbados do not share an extradition treaty.  However, Barbados will extradite Barbadian citizens subject to an Interpol notice.  A formal judicial request is required to extradite.  Local authorities may take action on Interpol notices to detain a child listed as a missing person in a yellow notice or to arrest an individual for whom there is red notice.  

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Mediation

Children may acquire citizenship in Barbados through birth, descent, or naturalization.  All children born in Barbados are automatically citizens regardless of the nationality of the child’s parents.  If a child has a parent who is a citizen of Barbados, then the child acquires citizenship regardless of where he or she is born and regardless of the gender of the parent.  Parents of children born abroad must file paperwork with Barbados Immigration.  The Barbados Immigration Service can be contacted at:

Immigration Department
Careenage House, The Warf
Bridgetown, St. Michael
Barbados

Telephone: + (246) 434-4100

Dual nationality is recognized under Barbadian law.

Either parent can apply for a passport for their children without the consent of the other parent, and must prove their identity and their relationship to the child.  A parent may be restricted from obtaining a passport for a child by a court order regarding custody or that includes restrictions on the child leaving the jurisdiction.  Travel restrictions may be put in place by the Chief of Immigration.  In addition to a request from a court, an individual or his/her legal representative may request a travel restriction by submitting court documents (e.g. a custody order or court order regarding travel restrictions) to the Chief of Immigration.  Absent the submission of these documents to the Chief of Immigration, passports will generally be issued to any Barbadian who applies.

Children may not be entered on a parent’s passport.  All children are required to travel on their own passport, including when traveling in the region.

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?
No
Are Intercountry Adoptions between this country and the United States possible?
Both adoptions to the United States from Barbados and from the United States to Barbados are possible.
Is this country a U.S. Hague Partner?
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Hague Convention Information

Barbados is not a party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention or Convention). Under the Intercountry Adoption Universal Accreditation Act (UAA), which became effective on July 14, 2014, the accreditation requirement and standards, which previously only applied in Convention cases, now also apply in non-Convention or “orphan” cases. The UAA requires that an accredited or approved adoption service provider acts as a primary provider in every case, and that adoption service providers providing adoption services on behalf of prospective adoptive parents be accredited or approved, or be a supervised or exempted provider.  Adoption service providers and prospective adoptive parents should review the State Department’s Universal Accreditation Act of 2012 webpage for further information. Intercountry adoptions of children from non-Convention countries continue to be processed under the Orphan Process with the filing of the Forms I-600A and I-600.  However, adoption service providers should be aware of the information on the USCIS website on the impact on Form I-600A and Form I-600 adjudications under the UAA, including the requirement that all home studies, including home study updates and amendments, comply with the Convention home study requirements, which differ from the orphan home study requirements that were in effect before July 14, 2014.

Only citizens of countries with which Barbados has diplomatic or consular relations may adopt Barbadian children. The United States has diplomatic relations with Barbados.

U.S. Immigration Requirements For Intercountry Adoptions

To bring an adopted child to the United States from Barbados, you must meet certain suitability and eligibility requirements. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) determines who can adopt a child from another country and bring that child to live in the United States under U.S. immigration law.

Additionally, a child must meet the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law in order to be eligible to immigrate to the United States with an IR-3 or IR-4 immigrant visa.

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Who Can Adopt

Who Can Adopt

In addition to being found suitable and eligible to adopt by USCIS, prospective adoptive parents seeking to adopt from Barbados must meet the following requirements:

  • Residency: The adoption of a Barbadian child can take place in Barbados or in the applicants' country of residence. Applicants wishing to adopt a child in Barbados will be required to reside on the island for a period of at least 18 months. If applicants wish the adoption to take place in their country of residence, the applicants are required to come to Barbados for at least a few weeks in order to receive the child into their care and must attend the High Court hearing for the license to take the child out of Barbados for the purpose of adoption.
  • Age of Adopting Parents: Prospective adoptive parents who are already related to the child they plan to adopt must be at least 18 years old. Otherwise, at least one prospective adoptive parent must be 25 years old and at least 18 years older than the child.
  • Marriage: Both married and single people may adopt.
  • Income: None.
  • Other: None.
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Who Can Be Adopted

In addition to qualifying as an orphan under U.S. immigration law, the child must meet the following requirements of Barbados:

  • Relinquishment: None.
  • Abandonment: None.
  • Age of Adoptive Child: None. Please note that for a child to meet the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law, a Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative, must be filed on the child’s behalf while the child is under the age of 16 (or under the age of 18 if the child is the birth sibling of another adopted child who has immigrated or will immigrate based on adoption by the same adoptive parent(s)).
  • Sibling Adoptions:  None.
  • Special Needs or Medical Conditions: None.
  • Waiting Period or Foster Care:  None.

Caution: Prospective adoptive parents should be aware that not all children in orphanages or children’s homes are eligible for adoption. In many countries, birth parents place their child(ren) temporarily in an orphanage or children’s home due to financial or other hardship, intending that the child return home when this becomes possible. In such cases, the birth parent(s) have rarely relinquished their parental rights or consented to the adoption of their child(ren).

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How to Adopt

Barbados’s Adoption Authority
Child Care Board

The Process

The process for adopting a child from Barbados generally includes the following steps:

  1. Choose a U.S. Accredited or Approved Adoption Service Provider
  2. Apply to USCIS to be Found Suitable and Eligible to Adopt (Form I-600A)
  3. Apply to Barbados’ Authorities to Adopt and be Matched with a Child
  4. Adopt the Child in Barbados
  5. Apply for Your Child to be Found Eligible to Immigrate to the United States as an Orphan (Form I-600)
  6. Apply for a U.S. Immigrant Visa for Your Child and Bring Your Child Home

1.  Choose a U.S. Accredited or Approved Adoption Service Provider

Before taking steps to adopt a child from Barbados, you should select a U.S. accredited or approved adoption service provider to be the primary provider in your case. As of July 14, 2014, a primary provider is required in every intercountry adoption case under the UAA, unless an exception applies. The primary provider is responsible for:

  • Ensuring that all six adoption services defined at 22 CFR 96.2 are provided;
  • Supervising and being responsible for supervised providers where used (see 22 CFR 96.14); and
  • Developing and implementing a service plan in accordance with 22 CFR 96.44

For more information on primary providers and the UAA, please see Universal Accreditation Act of 2012.

2.  Apply to USCIS to be Found Suitable and Eligible to Adopt

In order to adopt a child from Barbados, you will need to meet the requirements of the Government of Barbados and U.S. immigration law. 

To meet U.S. immigration requirements, you may also choose to file a Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of an Orphan Petition, with USCIS to be found suitable and eligible to adopt before you identify a child to adopt. You may also choose to file the Form I-600 petition along with all the required Form I-600A application supporting documentation, including an approved home study, once you have been matched with a child and have obtained all the necessary documentation. Please see the USCIS website for more information about filing options. Regardless of which approach you take, the home study must meet the same requirements. As of July 14, 2014, unless an exception applies, the home study must comply with the requirements in 8 CFR 204.311 and 22 CFR Part 96.47.

3.  Apply to Barbados’s Authorities to Adopt and be Matched with a Child

If you are found suitable and eligible to adopt under U.S. law, you must also submit an adoption application to the Child Care Board of Barbados to be found eligible to adopt by Barbados.

If a child is eligible for intercountry adoption, the competent adoption authority or other authorized entity in Barbados will review your adoption dossier and, if an appropriate match is found, will provide you with a referral. We encourage families to consult with a medical professional and their adoption service provider to understand the needs of the specific child but each family must decide for itself whether it will be able to meet the needs of, and provide a permanent home for, a specific child, and must conform to the recommendations in the home study for the number of children and capacity to deal with any special needs of an adoptive child. Learn more about Health Considerations.

 The child must be eligible to be adopted according to Barbados’ requirements, as described in the Who Can Be Adopted section. The child must also meet the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law.

4.  Adopt the Child in Barbados

The process for finalizing the adoption in Barbados generally includes the following:

  • Role of Adoption Authority: The laws that govern adoptions in Barbados are the Child Care Act and the Adoption Act. The Child Care Board administers these laws. Upon being notified of a prospective parent's intent to adopt, the Child Care Board will contract a social welfare agency abroad to do a home study. The home study conducted for U.S. immigration procedures (form I-600A) is acceptable. Upon completion of the home study, the adoptive parents should submit it to the Child Care Board for review. After the Child Care Board approves the home study, the Child Care Board will identify a child based on the adoptive parents' requests.
  • Role of the Court: The adoptive parents (using an attorney) will need to obtain an order from a Barbadian court authorizing the care and custody of the minor after they have been matched with a child by the Child Care Board. The adoptive parents are required to come to Barbados to attend the High Court hearing for the license and to receive the child into their care.
  • Role of Adoption Agencies: There are no private adoption agencies operating in Barbados.

    As of July 14, 2014, unless an exception applies, there must be a U.S. accredited or approved adoption service provider acting as the primary provider in every case. Also, any agency or person providing an adoption service on behalf of prospective adoptive parents in any Convention or non-Convention case must be accredited or approved, or be a supervised or exempted provider. Adoption service means any one of the following  six services:
    • Identifying a child for adoption and arranging an adoption;
    • Securing the necessary consent to termination of parental rights and to adoption;
    • Performing a background study on a child or a home study on a prospective adoptive parent(s), and reporting on such a study;
    • Making non-judicial determinations of the best interests of a child and the appropriateness of an adoptive placement for the child;
    • Monitoring a case after a child has been placed with prospective adoptive parent(s) until final adoption; or
    • When necessary because of a disruption before final adoption, assuming custody and providing (including facilitating the provision of) child care or any other social service pending an alternative placement. 22 CFR 96.2 Definitions.
  • Time Frame: It will typically take non-Barbadians, including U.S. citizens, between six months and a year to adopt a Barbadian child, but it can take longer due to sometimes-lengthy Barbadian court procedures.
  • Adoption Fees: Average adoption attorney fees in Barbados are approximately U.S. $3000, which includes court fees. However, fees may vary depending on the attorney. It is necessary for the applicants to use an attorney in Barbados who will apply for the license on their behalf. There are no fees for filing adoption paperwork with the Child Care Board.

    Prospective adoptive parents are advised to obtain detailed receipts for all fees and donations paid, either by themselves directly or through their U.S. adoption service provider, and to raise any concerns regarding any payment that you believe may be contrary to U.S. law, or the law of Barbados, with your adoption service provider. Please also refer to information concerning the Hague Complaint Registry. Improper payments may have the appearance of buying a child, violate applicable law, and could put all future adoptions in Barbados at risk. The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, for instance, makes it unlawful to bribe foreign government officials to obtain or retain business. Further, the UAA and IAA make it unlawful to improperly influence relinquishment of parental rights, parental consent relating to adoption of a child, or a decision by an entity performing Central Authority functions.
  • Documents Required:  A completed home study and supporting documents:
    • Birth certificate of each prospective adoptive parent;
    • Marriage certificate and divorce documents (if applicable);
    • Medical report of each prospective adoptive parent, to be conducted in the parent's country of residence;
    • Police reference;
    • Three (3) personal references known for a period of at least five (5) years and not family members;
    • Statement of applicant(s) income.

Note: Additional documents may be requested.

  • Authentication of Documents:  You may be asked to provide proof that a document from the United States is authentic. The U.S Department of State’s Authentications Office has information on the subject.


5. Apply for Your Child to be Found Eligible for Immigration to the United States as an Orphan: After you finalize the adoption in Barbados, USCIS must determine whether the child meets the definition of an orphan under U.S. immigration law in order for the child to immigrate to the United States. You will need to file a Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative. At the time you file your Form I-600 petition, the adjudicating officer will determine whether the UAA applies or if your case is UAA grandfathered.  For more information on UAA grandfathering and transition cases, please see Universal Accreditation Act of 2012. Unless an exception applies, you must identify a primary provider in your case and the adjudicating officer may ask for the name and contact information of the primary provider if not provided in your Form I-600 petition. This information is required and, without it, your Form I-600 petition cannot be approved.

If you have an approved, valid Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of an Orphan Petition, you may file your Form I-600 petition either in the United States with USCIS, or  in person at the U.S.Embassy in Bridgetown, Barbados.

When a Form I-600 petition is adjudicated by USCIS in the United States, the consular section in Bridgetown, Barbados must complete a Form I-604, Determination on Child for Adoption (sometimes informally referred to as an orphan determination), to verify the child’s orphan status.  When a Form I-600 petition is adjudicated by an international USCIS office, USCIS generally completes the Form I-604 determination.

For Form I-600 petitions filed with the Embassy’s consular section, the consular officer must complete the Form I-604 determination after you file your Form I-600 petition. Conducting the Form I-604 determination is a critical part of the orphan adoption process. It can take weeks to complete, depending upon the circumstances of your case. Consular officers appreciate that families are eager to bring their adopted child home as quickly as possible. Some of the factors that may contribute to the length of the process include prevailing fraud patterns in the country of origin, civil unrest or security concerns that restrict travel to certain areas of the country, and the number of determinations performed by available staff. Consular officers make every effort to conduct them as quickly and thoroughly as possible. You are advised to keep your travel plans flexible while awaiting the results.

6.  Apply for a U.S. Immigrant Visa for Your Child and Bring Your Child Home

Now that your adoption is complete and the Form I-604 determination has been completed finding that your child meets the legal definition of an orphan for immigration purposes, there are a few more steps to take before you and your child can head home. Specifically, you need to apply for three documents before your child 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.

If the adoption is completed in Barbados, the adoptive parents should apply to the Office of the Registrar for a new birth certificate. If the adoption is to take place in the adoptive parents' country of residence, the child must have a passport issued by Barbados Immigration in order to apply for an immigrant visa.

Barbados Passport

Your child is not yet a U.S. citizen, so he/she will need a travel document or passport from Barbados.

U.S. Immigrant Visa

After you obtain the new birth certificate and passport for your child and you have filed Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative, you then need to apply for a U.S. immigrant visa for your child from the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown. This immigrant visa allows your child to travel home with you and be admitted to the United States as your child. As part of this process, you must provide the consular officer the Panel Physician’s medical report on the child.

Before coming for your child’s immigrant visa interview, please complete an Electronic Immigrant Visa Application (DS-260) online at the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC). If you filed a Form I-600 petition in the United States, you should receive a letter from the National Visa Center (NVC) confirming receipt of the petition and assignment of a case number and an invoice ID number. You will need this information to log into CEAC to file the DS-260 for your child. An adoptive parent should fill out these forms in your child's name. Answer every item on the form. If information is not applicable, please write “N/A” in the block. Print and bring the DS-260 form confirmation page to the visa interview. Please review the DS-260 FAQs, our Online Immigrant Visa Forms page, or contact the NVC at NVCAdoptions@state.gov or +1-603-334-0700 if you have questions about completing the online DS-260 form.

Visa issuance after the final interview generally takes 24 hours. It is not usually possible to provide the visa to adoptive parents on the same day as the immigrant visa interview. Adoptive parents should verify current processing times with the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown before making final travel arrangements.

Child Citizenship Act

For adoptions finalized abroad prior to the child’s entry into the United States: An adopted child residing in the United States in the legal and physical custody of the U.S. citizen parent pursuant to a lawful admission for permanent residence generally will acquire U.S. citizenship automatically upon entry into the United States if the child otherwise meets the requirements of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000, including the child is under the age of eighteen.

For adoptions finalized after the child’s entry into the United States: You will need to complete an adoption following your child’s entry into the United States and before the child turns eighteen for the child (if he or she otherwise meets the requirements of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000) to automatically acquire U.S. citizenship.

Read more about the Child Citizenship Act of 2000

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Traveling Abroad

Applying for Your U.S. Passport

U.S. citizens are required to enter and depart the United States on a valid U.S. passport.  Once your child has acquired U.S. citizenship, s/he will need a U.S. passport for any international travel. 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 Department of State’s Passport Application Wizard will 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 a Visa to Travel to Barbados

In addition to a U.S. passport, you may also need to obtain a visa. Where required, visas are affixed to your passport and allow you to enter a foreign nation. To find information about obtaining a visa for Barbados, see the Department of State’s Country Specific Information.

Staying Safe on Your Trip

Before you travel, it is always a good practice to investigate the local conditions, laws, political landscape, and culture of the country. The Department of State provides Country Specific Information for every country in the world about various issues, including health conditions, crime, 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 enroll with the Department of State through our Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive important information from the Embassy about safety conditions in your destination country. Enrollment makes it possible for the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in Barbados, to contact you in an emergency, whether natural disaster, civil unrest, or family emergency.

Enrollment is free and can be done online via the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).

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After Adoption

Post-Adoption Resources

Many adoptive parents find it important to find support after the adoption. There are many public and private nonprofit post-adoption services available for children and their families. There are also numerous adoptive family support groups and adoptee organizations active in the United States that provide a network of options for adoptees who seek out other adoptees from the same country of origin. Take advantage of all the resources available to your family, whether it is another adoptive family, a support group, an advocacy organization, or your religious or community services. Your primary provider can provide or point you to post- placement/post-adoption services to help your adopted child and your family transition smoothly and deal effectively with the many adjustments required in an intercountry adoption.

Here are some places to start your support group search:

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

COMPLAINTS

If you have concerns about your adoption process, we ask that you share this information with the Embassy in Bridgetown, particularly if it involves possible fraud or misconduct specific to your child’s case. The Department of State takes all allegations of fraud or misconduct seriously. Our Adoption Comment Page provides several points of contact for adoptive families to comment on their adoption service provider, their experience applying for their child’s visa, or about the Form I-600 petition process.

The Hague Complaint Registry is an internet based registry for filing complaints about U.S. accredited or approved adoption service providers. If you think your provider's conduct may have been out of substantial compliance with accreditation standards, first submit your complaint in writing directly to your provider. If the complaint is not resolved through the provider's complaint process, you may file the complaint through the Hague Complaint Registry

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Contact Information

U.S. Embassy in Barbados

Consular Section
Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael, Barbados 
Tel: (246) 227-4000
Fax: (246) 431-0179
Email: consularbridge2@state.gov
Internet: https://bb.usembassy.gov/embassy/bridgetown/

Barbados Adoption Authority

Child Care Board
The Fred Edghill Building
Cheapside, Fontabelle, Barbados
Tel: 1 (246) 426-2577

Embassy of Barbados

2144 Wyoming Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Tel: (202) 939-9200
Fax: (202) 332-7467

Barbados also has consulates in: Los Angeles, Miami, and New York

Office of Children’s Issues

U.S. Department of State
CA/OCS/CI
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, D.C.  20522-1709
Email: Adoption@state.gov
Internet: adoption.state.gov

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

For questions about immigration procedures:
USCIS National Customer Service Center (NCSC)
Tel: 1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833)
Internet: uscis.gov

For questions about filing a Form I-600A application or I-600 petition:
USCIS National Benefits Center
Tel: 1-877-424-8374 (toll free); 1-816-251-2770 (local)
Email: NBC.Adoptions@uscis.dhs.gov

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 None Multiple 120 Months
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 No Treaty N/A N/A
E-2C 12 None Multiple 24 Months
F-1 None Multiple 36 Months
F-2 None Multiple 36 Months
G-1 None Multiple 48 Months
G-2 None Multiple 48 Months
G-3 None Multiple 48 Months
G-4 None Multiple 48 Months
G-5 1 None Multiple 24 Months
H-1B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-1C None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2A None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2R None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
I None Multiple 48 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 36 Months
M-2 None Multiple 36 Months
N-8 None Multiple 48 Months
N-9 None Multiple 48 Months
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 15 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 48 Months
U-2 None Multiple 48 Months
U-3 None Multiple 48 Months
U-4 None Multiple 48 Months
U-5 None Multiple 48 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

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

Please check back for update.

Birth, Death, Burial Certificates

Birth
 

Available

Fees:  There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Document Name:  Birth Certificate

Issuing Authority:  Registrar of the Supreme Court, located at Whitepark Road, St. Michael.
 

Death/Burial
 

Available: only for those persons who died before the year 1925.

Fees: There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Document Name:  Death Certificate

Issuing Authority: Registrar of the Supreme Court, Barbados

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: The certificate is a certified copy of the entry in the book of the parish church where the burial occurred.

Certified Copies Available: Yes

 

 

 

Marriage, Divorce Certificates

Marriage
 

Available

Fees: There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Document Name:  Certificate of Marriage

Issuing Authority: Registrar of the Supreme Court, Barbados

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format: This certificate is a certified copy of an extract of the record of the officiating Marriage Officer. 


Divorce
 

Available

Fees: There is a fee for this service, plus postage.

Issuing Authority: Registrar of the Supreme Court

Special Seal(s) / Color / Format:  Certified copy of the Decree Absolute.

 

 

 

Adoption Certificates

Unavailable: Once a final adoption order has been entered by a court, adoptive parents may apply for a new birth certificate listing them as parents of the adopted child at the Registrar of the Supreme Court.

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Identity Card

Enter text here.

Police, Court, Prison Records

Police Records


Available

Fees: BD $10.00 plus postage

Issuing Authority: Available from the Police Headquarters, Criminal Records Office, Coleridge St., Bridgetown.

Procedure for Obtaining:  Applicants must submit their name, date and place of birth, and addresses and dates of residence in Barbados. The application must be accompanied by a set of fingerprints that will be taken by a police officer at the time of application.

Court Records
 

Available

Issuing Authority: Applicants can apply for their records at the Supreme Court Complex, Whitepark Road St Michael.
 

Prison Records
 

Available

Issuing Authority: Available from the Superintendent of Prisons, Glendairy Prison, Station Hill, Barbados.

Comments: Name and dates of imprisonment must be included.

 

Military Records

Available

Issuing Authority: For those serving in the Barbados Defense Force, records are available from: The Adjutant, Barbados Defense Force, St. Anne's Fort, The Garrison, and Barbados. For those serving in the British Armed Forces, records are available from the appropriate British authority in London. (See United Kingdom).

Passports & Other Travel Documents

Types Available (Regular, Diplomatic, Official, etc.):

 

Other Records

Bapistmal Certificate
 

The certificate is a certified copy of an extract of the record of the church where the baptism occurred.  Baptismal certificates for persons born after 1890 are usually available from the church in which the baptism was performed.

Visa Issuing Posts

Post Title: Embassy of the United States Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean and the OECS

Address:

Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.

Phone Number:

Main switchboard: (246) 227-4000

Consular Section (Questions): (246) 227-4399

Consular Section Fax: (246) 431-0179

Visa Appointment Hotline (Only): (246) 227-4227

Public Affairs Section Fax: (246) 429-5316

Visa Services: Nonimmigrant and immigrant visa applications for nationals of Antigua and Barbuda are processed by the U.S. Embassy in Bridgetown, Barbados.

Comments / Additional Information:

Consular Section Email:
 Non-Immigrant Visas - bridgetownniv@state.gov
 Immigrant Visas - bridgetowniv@state.gov
 American Citizen Services - bridgetownacs@state.gov

 

Visa Services

All visa categories for all of Barbados and the following:

  • Antigua and Barbuda (includes Redonda)
  • British Dependent Territories:
    • Anguilla
    • British Virgin Islands
    • Montserrat
    • Dominica
    • Dutch St. Maarten
    • French West Indies
    • Grenada (including Southern Grenadines)
    • Guadeloupe
    • Martinique
    • Saba
    • St. Barthelmy
    • St. Eustatius
    • St. Kitts and Nevis
    • St. Lucia
    • St. Martin
    • St. Vincent and the Grenadines

 

Foreign Consular Office Contact Information

Washington, DC (202) 939-9200 (202) 332-7467

Miami, FL (786) 515-1201 (305) 455-7975

New York, NY (212) 551-4325 (212) 867-8899

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Bridgetown
Wildey Business Park
Wildey
St. Michael BB 14006
Barbados, W.I.
Telephone
+(246) 227-4399
Emergency
+(246) 227-4000
Fax
+(246) 431-0179
Barbados Country Map

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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.