Programm Overview

"Nothing you do for children is ever wasted." Garrison Keillor


Taking the international adoption route takes strength, fortitude and bottomless love. It involves ever-changing laws and regulations of at least two countries. It involves travel abroad to a foreign-speaking country. Most importantly, it involves enormous emotional commitment throughout the entire adoption process.

We salute all parents who take this road and are ready to support them with professional legal advice.

Step 1. Registering with DAPRC.
The Adoptive Parents have firstly to register with the Department for Adoption and Protection of the Rights of the Child (DAPRC), which a part of the Ministry for Social Policy of Ukraine. The DAPRC processes the documents submitted by the Adoptive Parents and enters them into the database within twenty working days. Once an application is aspproved, the Adoptive Parents will receive an invitation to visit DAPRC in person.

Step 2. Visiting DAPRC.
During a visit to DAPRC, the competent officer will show you information about orphans available for international adoption according to age range specified by the Adoptive Parents and fixed in their Home Study. Then DAPRC issues a letter of authority which allows you to visit an orphanage to meet and establish contact with a child.

Step 3. Travel to orphanage city.
The Adoptive Parents visit the orphanage and meet the child and review his or her medical record. At the present time DAPRC allows only three appointments to each adoptive family to choose a file of an orphan whom they would like to meet for possible adoption. If they select none of them, they must leave the country before scheduling a new appointment with the adoption center. However, statistics shows that around 97% of parents end up choosing a child during their trip.
The Adoptive Parents are also entitled by law to conduct an independent medical exam on the child through a private doctor of their choice, in the presence of a member of the orphanage staff.

Step 4. Court hearing.
After choosing a child, the files for the case are submitted to a judge in the district where the orphanage is located. A hearing is held at which both spouses shall be present. Usually two court hearings take place - preliminary and main hearing, when the Judge reviews all the documents and makes a decision. Our competent lawyers will help you to prepare an "irreproachable" set of document for positive decision to adopt your desirable child and will be present at the court hearings as your legal representatives. The adoption hearing itself is usually a fairly brief affair. In court you, and the child(ren) if they are old enough, might be asked some questions and the decision to grant the order is usually made there and then.
After the hearing, one of the parents may return home. However, the court decision does not take legal effect for ten days. During this period the decision may be appealed.
Once the court decision takes legal effect, the Adopting Parents are granted parental rights and legal responsibility for the child.

Step 5. Travel back home
After receiving the adoption decree, the local Vital Statistics Office of Ukraine issues a post-adoption birth certificate for the adopted child with relevant changes. Then the Adoptive Parents can apply for Ukrainian passport for their child at the local Office of Visas and Registration.
And, finally, the Adoptive Parents approach the Embassy/Consulate of their country of residence to get immigrant visa or other travel documents for their child(ren). After that they can accompany the child(ren) to their new home!

Remember: Within 30 days after arrival, the Adoptive Parents are required to register the adopted child with the Ukrainian Consulate/Embassy and submit periodic reports as described above. The Ukrainian adoption authorities require annual reports, including photos of the child be submitted for the first three years after Ukrainian child's adoption. Thereafter reports are required every three years until the child turns age 18. Under Ukrainian law, the child retains his Ukrainian citizenship (dual citizenship) until the age of 18 and upon reaching the age of majority (age 18) can decide whether or not to keep Ukrainian citizenship.




If you need to speak to a lawyer about international family planning, legal separation, child custody, enforcement of a court order, fertility treatment options, inheritance rules or another family or succession law matter, contact the Law Offices of UkrLegis.