Non-resident Indian to be treated at par with resident Indian. Non-resident Indian prospective adoptive parents shall be treated at par with Indians living in India in terms of priority for adoption of Indian orphan, abandoned or surrendered children.

Inter-country adoption in India, along with relative adoption, constitutes a significant aspect of child welfare and adoption practices in the country. Let's delve into a comprehensive overview, covering both inter-country and relative adoption:

Inter-Country Adoption:

Inter-country adoption refers to the legal process wherein a child is adopted by individuals or couples who are citizens of another country. In India, inter-country adoption is regulated by the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA), operating under the Ministry of Women and Child Development. Here's a detailed breakdown:

Eligibility Criteria for Prospective Adoptive Parents (PAPs):

Age and Marital Status: PAPs must meet certain age requirements, typically being at least 25 years old, and they may adopt jointly if married or singly. The age difference between the child and the younger PAP should generally be between 25 to 55 years.

Health and Character: PAPs need to be in good health, both physically and mentally, and demonstrate good moral character. They are required to provide relevant medical certificates and undergo police verification.

Financial Stability: PAPs should exhibit financial stability and provide evidence of their ability to support and care for the child.

No Biological Child: In cases where the PAPs have biological children, there are specific rules regarding the gender of the adopted child to maintain gender balance in the family.

Process of Inter-Country Adoption:

Registration: PAPs register with an authorized foreign adoption agency (AFAA) or the Central Authority in their home country.

Home Study Report (HSR): PAPs undergo a home study conducted by a social worker to assess their suitability for adoption.

Dossier Submission: PAPs compile and submit a dossier containing various documents, including birth certificates, marriage certificates, income proof, and health certificates, to the concerned authority in their home country.

Referral and Acceptance: Upon approval, PAPs are matched with a child available for adoption in India. They review the referral and accept it if they find the child suitable.

Pre-Adoption Visit: PAPs travel to India for a pre-adoption visit to meet the child and complete necessary formalities.

Court Process: PAPs file a petition for adoption in the court where the child resides. The court examines the case and grants the adoption order.

Immigration and Visa: PAPs apply for the child's immigration and visa clearance to bring them to their home country.

Post-Adoption Follow-up: Post-placement follow-up reports are required to be submitted to CARA by the foreign adoption agency until the child turns 18.

Regulatory Framework and Challenges:

The Hague Convention: India is a signatory to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-country Adoption, ensuring standardized procedures and safeguards.

CARA Guidelines: CARA provides guidelines and regulations to ensure the welfare and protection of children throughout the adoption process.

Challenges: The inter-country adoption process can be lengthy and complex, with challenges including cultural adjustments, identity issues for the adopted child, and ethical concerns related to child trafficking.

Relative Adoption:

Relative adoption, also known as kinship adoption or intra-family adoption, involves the legal adoption of a child by a relative or someone with a prior relationship with the child. Here's how it works in India:

Eligibility Criteria for Prospective Adoptive Relatives:

Relationship: The prospective adoptive parent must be a relative of the child, including grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, or cousins.

Age and Marital Status: Similar to inter-country adoption, there are age requirements, typically 25 years and above, and single individuals or married couples may adopt.

Character and Suitability: Prospective adoptive relatives must demonstrate good moral character, financial stability, and the ability to provide a nurturing and stable home environment for the child.

Process of Relative Adoption:

Consent of Biological Parents: If the child's biological parents are living, their consent is required unless their parental rights have been terminated by a court order.

Court Proceedings: The relative seeking to adopt the child files a petition for adoption in the appropriate court. The court examines the case, considers the child's welfare, and issues an adoption order if it deems it in the child's best interests.

Legal Documentation: Once the adoption order is granted, legal documentation is prepared to finalize the adoption, including updating the child's birth certificate.

Post-Adoption Support: Support services may be available to assist the adoptive family with the transition and integration of the child into their home.

Benefits and Considerations:

Relative adoption offers benefits such as preserving family bonds, maintaining cultural continuity, and potentially expediting the adoption process. However, it also comes with considerations such as legal complexities and the need for ongoing support services.


Inter-country adoption and relative adoption are two avenues through which children in need of care and protection find permanent and loving homes. While each has its own set of procedures, regulations, and challenges, both aim to ensure the welfare and best interests of the children involved. Regulatory bodies like CARA play a crucial role in overseeing and regulating these adoption processes to safeguard the rights and well-being of the children.

For more information please visit the website of Central Adoption Resource Agency (Govt. of India) at (The above contents are just for information, we strongly recommend to contact the concerned department in your home country and India and also take legal advice for better understanding as there are complex formalities)

We at NRI Law Offices has expert lawyer having vast knowledge and experience of assisting in the Inter Country Adoption under Hague Convention from beginning till the adoptive child reach the destination Country of adoptive parents. We have been successfully handled the Inter Country Adoption case previously.

DISCLAIMER – By visiting our site you acknowledge and understand that you wish to gain more information about NRI Law Offices its practice areas for his/ her own information and use, and that the information is made available/provided to the user only on his/her specific request and any information obtained or material gathered or downloaded from this website is completely at the user’s volition without any solicitation, invitation or inducement of any sort whatsoever and any transmission, receipt or use of this site is not intended to, and shall not, create any lawyer-client relationship. None of the information contained on the website is or shall be construed in the nature of a legal opinion or otherwise amounts to any legal advice or advertisement. NRI Law Offices is not liable for any consequence of any action taken by the user relying on material/ information provided under this website. NRI Law Offices assumes no liability for the interpretation and/or use of the information contained on this Website, nor does it offer a warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied. This Website is a resource for informational purposes. In cases where the user has any legal issues, he/she in all cases must seek independent legal advice. By visiting our site you choose and acknowledge having read, understood and accepted the Disclaimer voluntarily.

Call Us
Email Us
Send Online Query
Book Apppointment