International adoption

Some families choose international adoption because they have a cultural connection to a specific nation. Others have spent time living in a specific country, or wish to adopt a relative internationally. 

International adoptions, also called inter-country adoptions, are facilitated by one of BC’s licensed adoption agencies, each of which have programs with different countries. A licensed agency will assist prospective parents in navigating the unique placement, immigration, and cultural processes of each country. The laws and requirements on international adoption vary tremendously with each country and can also change at any time. Common sending countries include the United States and nations in Africa, Asia, and eastern Europe.

The Hague Convention

Canada has ratified our agreement with the Hague Convention, an international agreement designed to protect the interests of children involved with adoption. Hague procedures must be complied with when Canada and the sending country have both signed and ratified the agreement. It is possible to adopt from a non-Hague country, however Canada is still bound by Hague requirements. Your agency will be able to inform you of the Hague status of any country.

There may be difficulties processing adoptions from certain countries not be aligned with BC laws. Check with BC's Ministry of Children and Family Development or your adoption agency for the latest information.

What to expect when you're adopting

At first glance, adoption can seem overwhelming. We've broken down the steps for each type of adoption.

Adoption agencies 

BC's four licensed agencies facilitate international, local infant, and direct placement adoptions.