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The China Adoption Process

The China Adoption Process is full of great news and not-so-great news. The great news is China's adoption program is a state-run program, which means a lower cost.

The not-so-great news is China's adoption program is a state-run program, in other words a bureaucracy, which means a longer wait. While the adoption program offered by the Chinese government is both stable and more affordable, it is also currently a three year process from the moment you apply to the day you meet your child.

Fortunately, you are not matched with a child until your application is approved by the Chinese government. Your child won't be sitting in limbo for three years, waiting for you to be approved. And once you have passed the China adoption process and are matched with a child, the waiting time to travel is short - about five to eight weeks after approval, you get to travel to China.

During their China adoption process, most people will spend a little over two weeks in that country and adopt a baby of about seven months.

adopting from china

So What Are the Requirements?

Hope you're sitting down, because the list to qualify for the China adoption process is extensive. At the time this was written (late 2008), these were the conditions:

Must Be Married

You must be part of a legally married, heterosexual couple, and at least one of you must be a U.S. citizen. If you and your spouse have never been married before, you must be married at least two years before you can apply. If either of you have been previously married, then you must be married for at least five years before you can apply. Neither one of you can be divorced more than five times.

Between 30 and 49

You must be between the ages of 30 and 49 at the time your dossier is logged into the China Center for Adoption Affairs (CCAA). Because the China adoption process is lengthy, the CCAA allows you to apply once both of you are at least 29 and a half years old. Those between the ages of 30 to 44 qualify for a healthy child a year old or younger. Couples between the ages of 45 to 49 qualify for a healthy child aged two or younger.

Have No More Than Four Minor Children

If you have more than four minor children living in your home you cannot participate in the China adoption process. If you do have minor children at home, the youngest must be at least 12 months old at the time your dossier is logged in with CCAA.

Earn At Least $10,000 Per Family Member

You must prove you earn at least $10,000 annually for each member of your family including the child you wish to adopt. For example, if you and your spouse currently have two minor children in your home, and you wish to adopt a third child, you must earn at least $50,000 a year. In addition, you must have a minimum net worth of $80,000.

In Good Physical and Mental Condition

Do not apply if you are taking any medication for depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder, or schizophrenia. If you have taken any of these meds in the past, you must have been off them for at least two years before you can submit an application to the CCAA. Your Body Mass Index (BMI) must be under 40. To calculate your BMI, click here.

At Least a High School Education or Higher

You must have the minimum of a high school education or the equivalent.

No Criminal Record

And finally to pass the China adoption process, you must have no criminal record or alcohol abuse within the past 10 years. If either one of you have committed any acts of domestic violence, sexual abuse or child abuse, you are not allowed to apply. Also those with a history of illegal drug use, including experimentation are now allowed.

The Long and Short

China could be an excellent choice for you if you meet their daunting requirements and you have a lot of patience.

The Numbers

According to the U.S. Department of State, in the year 2007, more orphans came into the United States from China than from any other country - a whopping 5,453 of them.

Other Helpful Information

The high cost of international adoption is one reason many couples don't adopt. Don't let finances stand between you and your child. Learn more.

Would you like to adopt from China? Although the wait can be up to two years, the price is very reasonable and the adoption program is stable. Here are some tips for adopting from China

Many couples are now planning to adopt from Ethiopia because of the shorter wait and the reasonable costs. Learn more about adopting these beautiful children.

The children available from Kazakhstan are generally well cared for and the program usually takes less than a year. Learn more about adopting from Kazakhstan.

The Ukraine might be an excellent adoption country choice, especially if you are interested in an older child adoption. Click here to learn more.

Are you wondering what the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoptions is and how it might affect your international adoption? Learn more.

Adoptions are currently on hold from Guatemala. Learn why.

If you would like to adopt from Russia, it's a great choice if you are older or already have several children in your home. Here are some tips.

Are you thinking about adopting from Korea? You can adopt a baby from Korea, but there are age limits, and recently, the process has been extended to about three years. Learn more.

If Haiti is your adoption country choice, here are some things you should know.

A Jamaica international adoption is an affordable, yet relatively unknown way of building a family. Here's the scoop on adopting from Jamaica.

Unfortunately, if you hoped to adopt from Romania, you will have to look elsewhere. Here is a brief explanation of why international adoptions from Romania are not allowed.

A Russian international adoption can rescue a child from the stigma of being an orphan. Here's what it's like to grow up an orphan in Russia.

Do you have your heart set on adopting a child from Brazil? It is possible, but be prepared for a complicated and sometimes lengthy process. Read more about it here.

If you feel you can't afford the high agency fees, take heart. The Ukraine may be an excellent adoption country choice for you. You can pursue an independent adoption from the Ukraine. Learn more here.

Are you interested in pursuing an independent adoption from Kazakhstan? It is possible. Learn some of the steps you will have to take by clicking here.

Adoptions from Nepal are now once again possible. Learn more about it by clicking here.

A Taiwan adoption might not be something you considered when deciding on an international adoption, but adopting from this small island off the mainland coast of China can mean a far shorter wait. Here's what you need to know about adopting from Taiwan.

If you're looking for an international adoption choice that isn't as expensive, consider some of the low-cost alternatives by clicking here.

The devastating earthquake of January 12, 2010, opened the eyes of the world to the desperate plight of Haitians, including the countless orphans of Haiti. American citizens especially have been moved to open their homes to these children, but the U.S. State Department is urging these parents to slow down. Read more.

Corruption and greed brought an end to adoptions from Cambodia, but new laws and regulations are now being established that might one day allow American parents to again adopt from Cambodia. Learn more.

It is possible to adopt from Honduras without using an agency, but you will need to know the language and have contacts there. Learn more.

An update to pursuing a Haiti adoption: It is now not only once again possible, but necessary in light of the devastating earthquake in 2010. Learn more.

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