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U.S. Department of State
1995:  International Adoption -- Ireland
Bureau of Consular Affairs


     
                     INTERNATIONAL ADOPTION IN IRELAND
     
     
                                                                     
     DISCLAIMER:  THE INFORMATION IN THIS CIRCULAR RELATING TO THE
     LEGAL REQUIREMENTS OF SPECIFIC FOREIGN COUNTRIES IS PROVIDED
     FOR GENERAL INFORMATION ONLY.  QUESTIONS INVOLVING
     INTERPRETATION OF SPECIFIC FOREIGN LAWS SHOULD BE ADDRESSED TO
     FOREIGN COUNSEL.                                                
     
     
     
     PLEASE NOTE   Section 10(6) of the Irish Adoption Act of 1991
     states that a person or persons are not eligible to adopt in
     the Republic of Ireland if they are not a permanent resident of
     that country.  Therefore, under Irish law, U.S. citizens who
     are not permanent residents of Ireland will not be considered
     as adoptive parents.
         In addition, the number of children available for adoption
     in Ireland has decreased dramatically in past years and this
     trend is expected to continue.
         Due to the low numbers of children available to be placed,
     many adoption agencies will no longer accept applications from
     potential adoptive parents.  Those agencies that continue to
     accept applications have advised that all prospective adoptive
     parents, regardless of nationality, should expect to wait a
     minimum of five years between the date of application and the
     time the adoption is approved.
     
     
     GENERAL   The following is a guideline for U.S. citizens who
     are interested in adopting a child in Ireland.  This process
     can be expensive, time-consuming and difficult, involving
     complex foreign and American legal requirements.  Adoptions are
     given careful consideration on a case-by-case basis by both
     foreign judicial authorities and American consular officers to
     ensure that the legal requirements of both countries have been
     met for the protection of the adoptive parent(s), the natural
     parent(s) and the child.  Interested Americans are strongly
     advised to read the following information carefully.  Contact
     the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service early in the
     process, before you have identified a specific child to adopt. 
     Contact American consular officials in Ireland before
     formalizing an adoption agreement to ensure that appropriate
     visa procedures have been followed.
     

     
     AVAILABILITY OF CHILDREN FOR ADOPTION   Recent U.S. immigrant
     visa statistics reflect the following pattern for visa issuance
     to orphans:
     
                  IR-3 Immigrant Visas       IR-4 Immigrant Visas
     Fiscal       Issued to Irish            Issued to Irish    
     Year         Orphans Adopted Abroad     Orphans Adopted in U.S.
     
     FY-1988              0                          1
     FY-1989              0                          8
     FY-1990              0                          1
     FY-1991              0                          1
     FY-1992              0                          0
     FY-1993              0                          0
     FY-1994              0                          1
     
     
     IRISH ADOPTION AUTHORITY   Adoption in Ireland is regulated by
     the Irish Adoption Board.
     
     
     IRISH ADOPTION PROCEDURES   Under Irish law, U.S. citizens must
     show proof of permanent residency in the Republic of Ireland in
     order to be considered as prospective adoptive parents.  Home
     ownership and permanent employment in the state are acceptable
     as evidence of residency.  U.S. citizens living in Ireland must
     have been resident in the state for a minimum period of one
     year before becoming eligible to apply to adopt.  Other issues,
     such as the age of the adoptive parents, the religion of the
     adoptive parents and any family relationship to the child are
     also taken into consideration.
         Under Irish law, it is not possible to take a child out of
     Ireland in order to adopt abroad.  Section 40(1) of the
     Adoption Act of 1952 states that no person shall cause or
     permit the removal from Ireland of a child under seven years of
     age who is an Irish citizen.  However, the act does allow the
     removal of a child under one year of age for the purpose of
     living with the mother or a relative outside the state, and
     permits the removal of any other child with the approval of a
     parent.  The Irish Adoption Board advises that the accepted
     interpretation of the intention of Section 40 of the Adoption
     Act of 1952 is to impose restrictions on the sending of
     children abroad for adoption.
     

     IRISH EMBASSY AND CONSULATES IN THE UNITED STATES
         The address of the Irish Embassy is:
     
                   Embassy of Ireland
                   2234 Massachusetts Ave, N.W.
                   Washington, D.C.  20008
                   tel:  (202) 462-3939
     
     The Republic of Ireland also has Consulates in the following
     U.S. cities:
                   San Francisco, CA
                   Ft. Lauderdale, FL
                   Atlanta, GA
                   Chicago, IL
                   New Orleans, LA
                   Boston, MA
                   St. Louis, MI
                   New York, NY
                   Houston, TX
     
     
     U.S. EMBASSY IN IRELAND
         The address of the U.S. Embassy in Ireland is:
     
                   U.S. Embassy
                   American Citizen Services
                   42 Elgin Rd.
                   Ballsbridge,
                   Dublin, Ireland
                   tel:  (353) (1) 6687122
                         afterhours (353) (1) 6689612
                   fax:  (353) (1) 6689946
     
     
     DOCTORS   The U.S. Embassy/Consulates all maintain current
     lists of doctors and sources for medicines, should either you
     or your child encounter health problems while still in Ireland.
     
     
     QUESTIONS:  Specific questions regarding adoptions in Ireland
     may be addressed to the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy or
     Consulate.  You may also contact the Office of Children's
     Issues, U.S. Department of State, Room 4800 N.S.,
     2201 C Street, N.W., Washington, D.C.  20520-4818, telephone
     (202) 647-2688 with specific adoption questions.  Recorded
     information concerning significant changes in adoption
     procedures is available 24 hours a day at: (202) 736-7000, or
     by automated fax (calling from the telephone on your fax
     machine) at (202) 647-3000.  If the country you are interested
     in is not listed, procedures have not significantly changed. 
     Information on immigrant visas is available from the State
     Department's Visa Office, at (202) 663-1225.  This 24 hour
     automated system includes options to speak with consular
     officers during business hours for questions not answered in
     the recorded material.  Application forms and petitions for
     immigrant visas are available from the U.S. Immigration and
     Naturalization Service, the nearest office of which is listed
     in the federal pages of your telephone book, under  U.S.
     Department of Justice.
     
     In addition, the State Department publishes Consular
     Information Sheets and Travel Warnings.  Consular Information
     Sheets are available for every country in the world, providing
     information such as the location of the U.S. Embassy, health
     conditions, political situations, and crime reports.  When
     situations are sufficiently serious that the State Department
     recommends U.S. citizens avoid traveling to a country, a Travel
     Warning is issued.  Both Consular Information Sheets and Travel
     Warnings may be heard 24 hours a day by calling the State
     Department's Office of Overseas Citizens Services at
     (202) 647-5225 from a touch-tone telephone.  The recording is
     updated as new information becomes available.  In addition,
     this information is accessible through the automated fax
     machine, as above, and is also available at any of the 13
     regional passport agencies, field offices of the U.S.
     Department of Commerce, and U.S. Embassies and Consulates
     abroad.  Furthermore, you may write in requesting information,
     sending a self-addressed, stamped envelope to Overseas Citizens
     Services, Room 4811 N.S., 2201 C St., N.W., U.S. Department of
     State, Washington, D.C.  20520-4818.  Finally, information is
     available through your personal computer.  If you have a
     computer and a modem, you can access the Consular Affairs
     Bulletin Board (CABB).  This service is free of charge, and may
     be reached at: (202) 647-9225.  Consular Information Sheets and
     Travel Warnings may also be accessed by subscribers to many
     on-line services.  For complete information on accessing
     consular information via computer, please request document
     1016, entitled "Consular Information Program," from the
     automated fax system, which is described in the preceding
     paragraph.

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