Adopting a Child from Jamaica – FAQs

Adopting An Identified Child From Jamaica

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Adopting From Jamaica

New Beginnings provide home study and primary provider services for families seeking to adopt relatives or pre-identified children through The Child Protection and Family Services (CPFSA – formally, the Child Development Agency) in Jamaica. The program is suitable for people of Jamaica heritage that are seeking to adopt a known orphan, usually a relative.

Unlike other countries, the adoptive family would apply and work directly with CPFSA to complete their adoption or guardianship process in Jamaica. Under the Universal Accreditation Act of the United States, all US citizens doing an international adoption must have a Primary Adoption Services Provider. As a Primary Provider, New Beginnings will verify that all adoption services have been completed in compliance with the UAA.

Adoption Process in Jamaica

The Child Protection and Family Services Agency (CPFSA) is Jamaica’s sole governmental authority to complete adoptions. The family must apply directly to CPFSA. The CPFSA reviews and approves your application, investigates the circumstances around the child’s eligibility to be adopted in Jamaica, performs the child background study, and, if approved, will present the application to an independent adoption board for review. Once it is reviewed and approved by the Adoption Board, the case will be referred to the local court in the jurisdiction where the child resides. The local court will issue either an Adoption License (adoption not finalized in Jamaica) or an Adoption Order (adoption finalized in Jamaica). For most international adoptions, an Adoption License will be issued, and the family must finalize the adoption in their local court in the United States. Post-placement supervision requirements will be specified by the court to monitor the child’s and family’s adjustment to the adoption after the child comes home. Upon returning to the United States, the family have post-placement supervision, usually at 2, 4, and 6 months after placement and every three months until finalization. 

Age of Children Available For Adoption In Jamaica

Jamaica allows children from infancy to their teens to be adopted. Due to regulations around immigrant visas, New Beginnings will accept applications for children aged 0-15. If the child is 15 or older, the family must be prepared to file their I-600 before the child is age 16 (or must have a younger sibling) to qualify for an immigrant visa from USCIS.

Travel Requirements For  Jamaica Adoption

The adoptive family must take at least two trips to Jamaica for the process. On the first trip, they meet with CPFSA and appear in the local court. On the second trip, they will appear at the US Embassy in Kingston for the visa interview for their child to immigrate to the United States.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Age of Applicant: 25 years and up. For relative adoptions, the applicant can be under 25, but there must be at least 18 years age difference between the child and the applicant. There is no upper age limit, but the CPFSA will review each application on a case-by-case basis.
  • Marital Status: Single women, single men, and married couples accepted.
  • Marital History: No more than one divorce in total for each spouse.
  • Family Composition: Preference is given to families who have no children. The maximum number of children in the home is four. Exceptions can be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • Income: Families should be financially stable and able to care for a child without public assistance.
  • Parent Health: Good health without major medical concerns.
  • Parent Mental Health: Considered on a case-by-case basis; no severe conditions.
  • Education: Minimum of a high school diploma.
  • Prior Criminal History: Minor offense older than five years considered on a case-by-case basis; no drug offenses.

Ready to Move Forward?

If you would like to apply for Primary Provider Services for the adoption of a relative or pre-identified child from Jamaica, please complete the free no-obligation pre-application. We may contact you for a brief interview upon receipt of the pre-application. You are also invited to complete our Adoptive Family Profile for an Identified Child.

Please note: Not all children approved for adoption in Jamaica are necessarily approvable for an immigrant visa to the United States. The child must legally qualify as an “orphan” under USCIS laws. Therefore, we must have as much information about the child as possible before moving forward with your case.

Home Study Services

New Beginnings can perform home study services in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Florida. If you live in other states, New Beginnings can still act as your Primary Provider, but you may need to work with an approved home study provider in your state. New Beginnings can refer you to a home study agency where you live.

Families who receive an Adoption Order complete at least one post-placement report at 3 months after placement. Families who receive an Adoption License must complete post-placement reports at 6 weeks after placement, 3 months after placement, and every 3 months after that until the adoption is finalized in the US.

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