Who can adopt from China?

Check the page of China Adoption Requirement updates as of May 2007.


What children are available for adoption?

Children of all ages are available for adoption. The average age of infants at placement is 8 to 15 months. Older children are available.


Can we adopt more than one child at the same time?

China is now allowing two child placements at the same time. These children can be unrelated and in different orphanages. Please check with your AAC case manager for further details.


What can we expect from a child who has been in an orphanage?

Because there is a high ratio of children to a low ratio of caregivers, it is not uncommon for children in orphanage settings to have developmental delays. Most often after the child has been placed in a nurturing environment where his or her needs are continually met, these delays are often short-lived and the child will progress to normal development.

It is not uncommon for children raised in a group setting to have lice, scabies, or other bug bites.

Children in a group setting often learn to self soothe. This can manifest in many ways such as moaning, head banging, or rocking back and forth. Your social worker can give you many resources in helping your child to overcome this.


What type of care do the children receive in China?

The majority of children available for adoption in China are housed in orphanages or social welfare institutes. The children seem to be well taken care of considering the limited amount of resources available. In some cases, children are housed with foster families. Every attempt will be made to arrange meetings with adoptive families and caregivers.


What is the cost to adopt a child from China?

On average the cost is $25,000 to $27,000. The variation in price is based on unknown costs such as airfare, food, and lodging prices at the time of travel. Some families choose to upgrade airline seating or hotel room accommodations, which would reflect the higher amounts. AAC makes every effort to keep costs to a minimum. To see an itemized fee schedule please see the itemized adoption costs.

Most waiting children have an agency grant of $3,000 that will apply at the time you receive your Letter of Acceptance.

In addition, families who adopt internationally will receive a tax credit of $11,390 per child in the year your adoption is finalized. For more information on the Adoption Tax Credit please check the IRS website.


Will we receive any history on our child's health?

Because children in China are abandoned, it is impossible to know the family history of the child. However, all children upon intake to an orphanage or social welfare institute will receive an exam to determine his or her health status. Of course just as there are no guarantees with birth children, adopted children may be diagnosed with illnesses that were previously unknown.

In addition, the child will also receive immunizations and each family will be given an immunization record. Once home, some families choose to immunize their child again since standards for immunizations vary from country to country. Check with your pediatrician for further information.


I'm single. Can I adopt from China?

Yes. Single Mothers may adopt from the Waiting Child program. Please contact your AAC case manager for further details.


How will a child be chosen for us?

All adoptive families fill out a "Medical Conditions Checklist" which provides us with information about the age, gender, and health of a child that their family would be a good fit for.  Families are interviewed by agency staff to get further insight towards the matching process.  The recommendations given in families' homestudies are also taken into consideration.  When a child's file is presented to a family, we call this a "referral".  We ask that the family review the child's file with a physician, as this consultation will allow them to make a more informed decision.  There is never any obligation to accept a referral.  The decision to move forward with the adoption of a child is solely up to each family.  There is never any penalty or judgment if a family decides to decline a referral.


Can a person with an arrest record still adopt from China?

Yes; however, it will depend on the charge, conviction, and time passed since the arrest took place. An FBI background check is required for all adoptive parents. All criminal history must be disclosed to AAC. Any attempt to avoid disclosure to AAC will result in termination of the adoption application. For further clarification, please click here to read the requirements to adopt from China.


How long does it take to adopt a child from China?

It currently takes approximately 14-16 months from the time your application is accepted until travel to China to pick your child up. This time frame can lengthen or shorten depending on the China government's time frame in processing paper work. The process is divided into 10 phases.

  1. The Paper chase: This is the time frame when you will submit your application and begin to gather the necessary documents for your dossier. This will also include state mandated parenting classes and your home study. This part of the process takes approximately 3-5 months depending on how quickly families can gather the needed information.
  2. Dossier Review, Certification, and Authenticating: Once your documents are gathered, AAC will send your documents to the Secretary of State to have your dossier certified. Following certification, your dossier is then sent to the Chinese Consulate to have your documents authenticated. The average timeline to complete this phase is 6-8 weeks.
  3. Immigration Phase One: Before your dossier can be finished, you must have an approved immigration status. This is done by filing the I-800a. After review of the application and home study you will be sent a request to have your finger prints taken by the USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services). This will phase will take between 4-8 weeks to get approval.
  4. Dossier sent and logged in: The date of sending is called DTC (Dossier to China). Once received in China, it takes approximately 2-3 weeks for your dossier to get logged in. You then will be given an exact log in date otherwise known as LID..
  5. Referral: You will be notified of a possible referral when AAC receives children that match your preferences. At that time, AAC will email you, or if you are local you may come to the office. You will receive information on the child's medical background and growth reports as well as a photo or two of the child and their special need. It is not uncommon that the information given is a few months old at referral. AAC will make every effort to get updated information prior to acceptance.
  6. Pre-Approval:Once accepted, AAC will then submit a pre-approval request to CCCWA requesting this specific child to be adopted by the parents. The pre-approval phase can take from 3-14 days before a decision is made by China.
  7. Acceptance paper work: After your pre-approval, we will then wait for your Letter of Acceptance known as your LOA or LSC. At that time, you will sign a commitment to accept the child's referral and your signed paperwork will then be expedited back to China.
  8. Immigration Phase 2: At this time,we will send a new immigration request to USCIS requesting this specific child to be allowed into the US with this family. This will take about 5-6 weeks for approval from USCIS and the NVC (National Visa Center).
  9. Article 5: This is the last phase before your papers are submitted to CCCWA for your Travel Approval (TA). We send all of your immigration papers, documents, and letters to the Consult in China to affirm that all of your documents are in order. This is a two-part process. Your papers will then be sent to CCCWA to await the issue of your TA.
  10. TA and Travel to finalize the adoption: Once travel approval is given, AAC will make the necessary appointments at government agencies that will be need approvals to finalize your adoption. Once these appointments are scheduled, you will be able to make your flight arrangements to China. Travel to China usually occurs about 2-3 weeks following your TA. Usually AAC arranges for families to receive their children within 24 hours after arriving in China. The official adoption typically takes place within 48 hours after arriving. Your child will also be sworn in as an American citizen and will become official once your child lands on American soil.



Does anyone travel with us to China?

No. Fortunately, AAC has a China facilitator that will arrange for a guide/translator for your family that will be with you during your stay in the child's province and in Guangzhou for your consulate appointments.


What is a Dossier?

A dossier is a compilation of documents gathered to give the Chinese government a blueprint of who you are. It includes, but is not limited to, birth certificates, marriage certificates, financial statements, health records, police and FBI clearances, photos, as well as your own letter of intent to adopt. Once these documents are gathered, AAC will send your documents to the Secretary of State to be certified. Following certification, these documents then get sent to the Chinese embassy/Consulate to be authenticated. The AAC staff personally handles the process of getting your dossier certified and authenticated at no additional charge. This is a unique aspect of our agency.


What is a Home Study?

A home study is a report done by a social worker that becomes part of your dossier. For China, four visits from your social worker are required. This will include individual interviews as well as interviews as a couple. If there are additional members of the family such as siblings, interviews will also be conducted with them. Your social worker will determine if your home is considered safe and acceptable to raise a child.


What happens if we get pregnant during our adoption process?

Although we ask that you hold off on getting pregnant during the adoption process, we know that it is a family's choice. Each family situation will be handled on a case-by-case basis. Please contact your AAC case manager to discuss this further.


Can we adopt from another country while waiting for our child from China?

This depends on the state you reside. Colorado does not allow more than one open home study, so residents of Colorado are not allowed to have two concurrent adoptions. Check with your state officials to find out your options.


Contact Us »

735 East HWY 56, P.0. Box W
Berthoud, CO 80513 (map)

Phone: (970) 532-3576
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