The I-800A is the first form you will fill out with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This form is completed in order to start the international adoption process in order to adopt a child who lives within a Hague Convention country. The I-800A form along with other documents are required in order for the USCIS to determine your eligibility to adopt a Convention child.
Do NOT confuse this form with the I-600A form, Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition which is the first form to file when initiating the international adoption process of a child that lives within a non-convention country.
The following is a quick overview of the Form I-800A and should not be used in replace of the official, detailed instructions.
Guidelines Per the I-800A Form
- You are a U.S. citizen.
- You usually live within the United States.
- You are unmarried and at least 24 years-old.
- You are married and you and your spouse will both adopt a child once approved.
- If married, your spouse is either a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national, or holds a lawful status under U.S. immigration law. If the above is not true for your spouse, these factors will be used in determining whether your family is stable and ready to adopt a child from a Convention country.
Warning: Do not accept placement of a child before USCIS has approved Form I-800A.
It is also important to not speak to the parents, legal guardians, or others responsible for the care of the child who may be eligible for intercountry adoption until the contact is permissible.
Documents Needed to Show Evidence
The following documents are required.
- Proof that you are a U.S. citizen. An example would be a birth certificate.
- If married, your spouse's proof of U.S. citizenship or national of the Unites States.
- If married, and your spouse is not a U.S. citizen or national, proof of lawful status in the United States.
- If married, and your spouse is not a resident of the U.S., provide proof of spouse's identity and citizenship.
- Proof of marital status, if applicable.
- Proof of the completion of any preadoption requirements, if any.
- Completed adoption home study with a recommendation by the state agency. Be sure to use a social worker or agency that understands the guidelines needed to be met with international adoptions. Different information is needed with an international adoption than with a domestic adoption.
Attach copies, do NOT send original documents unless instructed to do so. Make sure the copies show front and back of the documents needed to support your application.
Where to File
I-800A form must be mailed to the USCIS Chicago Lockbox facility.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
P.O. Box 805695
Chicago, IL 60680-4118
For Non-Postal deliveries:
131 South Dearborn - 3rd Floor
Chicago, IL 60603-5517
See the USCIS Web site for up-to-date information on filing fees and to download Form I-800A and the complete detailed instructions.