California Intercountry Adoption

State Recognition of Intercountry Adoptions Finalized Abroad

Effect and Recognition of a Foreign Adoption Decree
Citation: Family Code § 8925A Hague adoption certificate or, in outgoing cases, a Hague custody declaration, obtained pursuant to part 97 of title 22 of the Code of Federal Regulations, shall be recognized as a final valid adoption for purposes of all State and local laws.

Readoption After an Intercountry Adoption
Citation: Family Code § 8919(a)-(c)

Each State resident who adopts a child through an intercountry adoption that is finalized in a foreign country shall readopt the child in this State if it is required by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The readoption shall include, but is not limited to, at least one postplacement in-home visit, the filing of the adoption petition, the intercountry adoption court report, accounting reports, the home study report, and the final adoption order. If the adoptive parents have already completed a home study as part of their adoption process, a copy of that study shall be submitted in lieu of a second home study. No readoption order shall be granted unless the court receives a copy of the home study report previously completed for the international finalized adoption by an adoption agency authorized to provide intercountry adoption services pursuant to § 8900. The court shall consider the postplacement visit or visits and the previously completed home study when deciding whether to grant or deny the petition for readoption.Each State resident who adopts a child through an intercountry adoption that is finalized in a foreign country may readopt the child in this State. Except as provided below, the readoption shall meet the standards described above.

A State resident who adopts a child through an intercountry adoption that is finalized in a foreign country with adoption standards that meet or exceed those of this State, as certified by the State Department of Social Services, may readopt the child in this State. The readoption shall include one postplacement in-home visit and the final adoption order.

Application for a U.S. Birth Certificate
Citation: Family Code § 8919(c); Health and Safety Code §§ 102635; 103450(a)

In addition to the requirement or option of the readoption process set forth in § 8919 of the Family Code, each State resident who adopts a child through an intercountry adoption that is finalized in a foreign country may obtain a birth certificate in the State of California in accordance with the provisions of § 102635 or § 103450(a) of the Health and Safety Code.

A new birth certificate shall be established by the State Registrar upon receipt of either of the following:

  • A report of adoption from any court of record that has jurisdiction of the child in this State, another State, the District of Columbia, in any territory of the United States, or in any foreign country, for any child born in California and whose certificate of birth is on file in the office of the State Registrar
  • A readoption order issued pursuant to § 8919 of the Family Code

Beneficially interested parties may petition the clerk of the superior court for an order to establish judicially the time and place of a birth that is unregistered or for which a certified copy is unobtainable.


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