Adoption Information: Montenegro
USCIS Begins Processing Adoptions from Montenegro
Intercountry Adoptions under the Hague Adoption Convention
On April 1, 2014, USCIS will begin accepting and adjudicating Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention) petitions filed on behalf of children from Montenegro.
The Department of State has determined that Montenegro’s intercountry adoption system supports:
- Certification from consular officers confirming that adoption decrees or custody orders obtained in Montenegro for a child habitually resident in Montenegro have been issued in compliance with the Hague Adoption Convention, and
- Issuance of Hague Adoption or Custody certificates for eligible children on a case-by-case basis.
What This Means for U.S. Prospective Adoptive Parents
To pursue a Hague Convention adoption in Montenegro after April 1, 2014, you must file the following forms with USCIS:
- Form I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country, to determine your eligibility and suitability to adopt a child from a Convention country, and
- Form I-800, Petition to Classify Convention Adoptee as an Immediate Relative, on behalf of a child habitually resident in Montenegro after your Form I-800A application is approved.
The Hague Adoption Convention, which entered into force in the United States on April 1, 2008, protects the welfare of children, birth parents and adoptive parents in intercountry adoptions. As of that date, new intercountry adoptions between the United States and other Hague Adoption Convention countries must comply with Hague Adoption Convention standards. Montenegro acceded to the Convention on March 9, 2012, and the Convention entered into force in Montenegro on July 1, 2012.
At the time the Hague Adoption Convention entered into force in Montenegro, the United States determined that it would not be able to process Hague Adoption Convention cases involving the intercountry adoption of children habitually resident in Montenegro. In June 2013, Montenegro passed legislation which established an effective Hague Adoption Convention process. In the United States, Hague Adoption Convention cases are processed using the USCIS Form I-800A application and Form I-800 petition.
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