Honduras Adoption

The Process of Adopting a Child in Honduras

ABSC – The Honduras Experts

Adoption by Shepherd Care has been an agency approved by the Government of Honduras for several years. Some agencies have many international programs to choose from, but our philosophy is to work with the country in which doors have been wide open to us and to focus on doing it very well.

We know the regulations in Honduras, we work closely with Honduran officials, and we travel there often to visit orphanages and foster homes. We know Honduran staff in charge of the adoption process and foster parents by name. International adoption can be unpredictable, but rest assured that we stay informed, connected, and will walk you through each part of this process.

Adoption By Shepherd Care is one of the few agencies approved to facilitate the placement of children of all ages from Honduras. Adoption By Shepherd Care was among the first group of agencies in the United States to become Hague accredited in 2008. We have been honored to assist numerous families in adopting from Honduras.

Answers to Your Questions

Why Adopt from Honduras?

Our Representative/ Attorney in Honduras coordinates all of the adoption in country. She is bilingual and very knowledgeable on International adoptions. She will assist your family while in country. She coordinates appointments with DINAFF (Honduras Central Authority), all court hearing to complete your adoption. Adoption By Shepherd Care and the Honduran attorney will coordinate details about when you receive your child, how the case is going in court and acquiring the final decree of adoption. Our staff will escort all families to each adoption required appointment.

Who is eligible to adopt from Honduras?

Single women

Married couples (married a minimum of 3 years) no more then 2 divorces per couple.

Must be between 25-60 and must be at least 15 years older than the child they wish to adopt.

Honduras gives preference to couples with less than 3 children currently in the home.

How long is the process?

Begin your adoption home study and submit form I-800A to USCIS.

               Submit a letter of intent and Dossier to DINAF through Adoption By Shepherd Care’s Attorney.

DINAF will confirm that the adoptive family has been approved by the USCIS to adopt a child and that they have a completed home study. Once your completed dossier has been evaluated, the case is presented to the DINAF adoption advisory council for a final decision on the adoption.

For children under 5 years old, the adoptive parents will be notified of a referral approximately 24 months to 36 months after the dossier is submitted. The younger the child you wish to adopt, the longer the wait for a referral. Families interested in adopting children over the age of 5 years old, can expect a referral within 12 to 24 months of registering their dossier in Honduras. The wait time is shortened if you are adopting a waiting child.

Approximately 2 to 4 weeks after the adoptive parents accept their referral, they will prepare for their 1st trip to Honduras. The trip will be approximately 7 days long. During this trip, the prospective adoptive parents will meet with DINAF for personal interviews with the social worker and psychologist. Adoptive parents will also meet their referred child and attend the first court meeting.

The court process takes 2 to 3 months, and most families will want to travel back to the US during this time. For those choosing to make a 2nd trip, you will travel again in about 2 to 3 months. The 2nd trip will take 6 to 8 weeks. During this trip you will obtain the court decree, register your adoption with the Honduras authorities, obtain your child’s new birth certificate and passport, and file for your child’s US visa. Finally, you will bring your child home.

Please note that all timelines are estimates and may vary.

What information will we receive on the child?

DINAF matches children with families based on the history and needs of the child, as well as the eligibility and desires of the family. When a child has been matched to a family by DINAF, the family receives a referral which includes photographs of the child, medical information, social history information, and any available evaluations on the child.

What about Special Needs Children?

To adopt a child from Honduras, the Honduran government considers the following to be children with special needs, and therefore families wishing to adopt them receive priority on the waiting list:

• Children 7 and older
• Groups of 2 siblings in which the older is 11 years old or older
• Sibling groups of 3 or more
• Children with special needs, hereditary or communicable diseases (HIV, etc.). It is possible that the special need may be a minor or correctible medical condition.

The wait to assignment of a special needs child is approximately 6-8 months.

How long will our trip to Honduras be?

Adoptive families will make at least 1 trip to Honduras. It is possible to make only one trip, but families would need to be prepared to stay in Honduras for at least 2 months. Once the final decree of adoption is issued, the family then begins the final process through the US Embassy to obtain a visa for their child to return to the US.

The in-country stay gives you time to visit and bond with your child. It is amazing to see how children change while receiving one on one attention from their parents. The bonding process is very important and being in the country allows your child to transition from being in an orphanage to being with you, his new family.

How does the legal process work?

1. Schedule a consultation with Adoption By Shepherd Care
2. Begin your adoption home study and submit form I-800A to USCIS.
3. Submit a letter of intent and Dossier to DINAF through Nightlight’s attorney.
4. DINAF will confirm that the adoptive family has been approved by the USCIS to adopt a child and that they have a completed home study. Once your completed dossier has been evaluated, the case is presented to the DINAF adoption advisory council for a final decision on the adoption.
5. For children under 5 years old, the adoptive parents will be notified of a referral approximately 24 months to 36 months after the dossier is submitted. The younger the child you wish to adopt, the longer the wait for a referral. Families interested in adopting children over the age of 5 years old, can expect a referral within 12 to 24 months of registering their dossier in Honduras. The wait time is shortened if you are adopting a waiting child.
6. Approximately 2 to 4 weeks after the adoptive parents accept their referral, they will prepare for their 1st trip to Honduras. The trip will be approximately 7 days long. During this trip, the prospective adoptive parents will meet with DINAF for personal interviews with the social worker and psychologist. Adoptive parents will also meet their referred child and attend the first court meeting.
7. The court process takes 2 to 3 months, and most families will want to travel back to the US during this time. For those choosing to make a 2nd trip, you will travel again in about 2 to 3 months. The 2nd trip will take 6 to 8 weeks. During this trip you will obtain the court decree, register your adoption with the Honduras authorities, obtain your child’s new birth certificate and passport, and file for your child’s US visa. Finally, you will bring your child home.
8. Please note that all timelines are estimates and may vary.

What are the Requirements After Returning Home?

Family travels the second time to Honduras. After I800 approval.

Family appears in court and signing with DINAF Final adoption decree is signed.

Birth Certificate is issued 10 business days after adoption decree.

Request of Honduran Passport for child.

Embassy appointment for visa issuance.

Child enters US as an American Citizen.

How Can I Find Answers to my Other Questions?

This one’s easy: just get in touch! Call us or request our free Honduras information packet today.

What are the Next Steps?

If you’d like to get started in the process, the first step is to schedule a one-on-one consultation, which will provide you with an overview of the process personalized to your situation. We look forward to sharing more about adopting from Honduras with you!

Adoption Services

Adoption by Shepherd Care works with many families in situations that fall outside of our traditional domestic and Honduras programs. Some families only need a home study, others are seeking to adopt a relative in another country, and some are in need of services after adopting a child.

ABSC is a licensed child-placing agency by the state of Florida and is fully accredited to work internationally within the guidelines set forth by the Hague Convention.

Questions?

For general contact, please complete the form below, and a member of our staff will get back to you to discuss further details.

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