How do I begin the intercountry adoption process?

The first step for intercountry adoption is to get assessed. Please see Information for Prospective Adopters for more information.

Who can adopt abroad?

For information on who can adopt a child or children from abroad please see Information for Prospective Adopters and Country Information

What countries are available to adopt from?

Prospective parents looking to adopt a child from abroad can adopt form a number of different countries. Please see Country information for more information.

What is the profile of the children now being adopted?

The trends in profile of children available for intercountry adoption is always changing. For current information on the various different countries please see Country Information. If you are working with an adoption agency in Ireland or abroad, they may also be able to advise you on recent trends in child profiles, based on the referrals they see coming in.

What are the costs involved?

The costs of intercountry adoption vary from country to country. Please see Country Information for more information on country specific costs.

How do I register an adoption effected outside of Ireland?

Please see Register of Intercountry Adoption (RICA) for more information and the relevant forms.

I would like to have an Irish passport but was adopted outside of Ireland? How can I do this?

The Adoption Authority of Ireland has no involvement in the issue of passports. Please see the website of the Department of Foreign Affairs for information. However, in order to apply for a passport, you will need to have registered your foreign adoption in Ireland and get a certificate of intercountry adoption. For information on how to do this, please see Register of Intercountry Adoption (RICA).

I am Irish but not currently residing in Ireland and I would like to adopt a child from abroad. Do I still need to go through the Adoption Authority of Ireland or an Irish agency?

No. Only applicants resident in Ireland can apply to adopt a child back into Ireland.  If you are living outside Ireland, you will need to be assessed for adoption in the country you are currently resident in and go through their adoption process.  The Adoption Authority would always advise you seek independent legal advice.

I was living abroad when I adopted my child. I would now like to have their adoption recognised in Ireland. How can I do this?

Please see Register of Intercountry Adoption (RICA) for information on how to apply to have a foreign adoption recognised and registered in Ireland.


  • What is an entry in the Rica?

The recognition of an ‘intercountry adoption’ or a ‘foreign adoption’ by the Irish State

  • Who can apply for entry?

The adopted person, a person by whom the adopted person was adopted and any other person having an interest in the matter

  • Who cannot apply for entry?

Those not covered by above criteria.

  • What kind of entries are refused?

Adoptions, the effects of which are not broadly similar to those of an Irish domestic adoption.

Adoptions abroad by persons resident in Ireland who have not been issued with a Declaration of Eligibility & Suitability to Adopt.

Adoptions by persons living abroad but whose adoptions are not Hague Convention adoptions or where those persons are not habitually resident in the country where the adoption was effected

  • What are the main proofs required in order to review an application?

An adoption document that bears the seal of the court or other authority of that country, for example an original court order or a certified-copy-of-an-entry of an adoption. The AAI may also request proof of marital status, proof of residency status and other relevant documents such as an affidavit-of-laws.

Published: Friday, 08 January 2016 12:39
Last Updated: Wednesday, 30 January 2019 12:06