The Process of Adopting a Child in Jamaica
ABSC – The Jamaica Experts
Adoption by Shepherd Care has been an agency approved by the Government of Jamaica for several years.
Jamaica is not part of the Hague Convention. Intercountry Adoptions from non-Hague countries are approved by USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) You can visit their website for additional information at: www.uscis.gov.
The Adoption Board is the only body that has responsibility for adoption of children in Jamaica. This service is undertaken for the Board by the Child Protection and Family Services Agency (CPFSA) (previously known as the CDA: Child Development Center) which processes all applications. You can visit their website for additional information at: www.childprotection.gov.jm .
Answers to Your Questions
Why Adopt from Jamaica?
Our Representative/ Attorney in Jamaica coordinates all of the adoption in country. She is very knowledgeable on International adoptions. She will assist your family while in country. She coordinates appointments with CPFSA (Board by the Child Protection and Family Services Agency), all court hearing to complete your adoption. Adoption By Shepherd Care and the Jamaican 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 Jamaica?
Jamaican citizens and citizens of USA are eligible to adopt a child meeting the posted guidelines by the CPFSA. Applicants who are related to the child being adopted must be over 18 years, old and over. All other applicants must be at least 25 years old (no upper age limit). Both single and married couples may apply. An applicant will be approved based on the age of the child being adopted, medical conditions of applicant, and family support for the child being adopted.
How do we get to the adoption process in Jamaica?
• You will be provided with a case number and the name of your Case Worker who will advise you of appointments that will be scheduled in order to process your case.
• Arrangements will be made for an officer to visit the birth parents and complete a child Study, assessing if the child can be deemed adoptable.
• For those applicants requesting a non-identified child you will be placed on a waiting list which is arranged based on a first come first serve basis and on the specification of your request.
• After all documentation required is obtained, all consents and interviews gathered, the case is now ready for the Case Committee report to be prepared.
• A Case Committee Report will be prepared by the case worker and submitted through the Adoption Coordinator to the Adoption Board for approval.
• After a case is submitted to the Case Committee of the Adoption Board and decision is made the case will return from the Case Committee with a decision which will be relayed to applicant.
• Approved cases are then prepared for court. Applicants have to attend an interview and have dialogue with their case worker to make the necessary arrangements for Court.
• To make an adoption legal, a Court has to grant an Adoption Order or an Adoption license.
• Persons who complete the adoption of children become the legal parents of the children they have adopted, and all the legal rights of biological parents are transferred permanently to the adoptive parents.
• After the order/license is issued by the Court the Adopter will take this document to the Registrar General Department (RGD) where they will apply for the child’s adopted birth certificate. (It should be noted that once a child has been adopted their former identity is no longer admissible and their former birth record is sealed).
What information will we receive on the child?
CPFSA 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 CPFSA, the family receives a referral which includes photographs of the child, medical information, social history information, and any available evaluations on the child.