U.S. Consulate General in Hong Kong
26 Garden Road
Central, Hong Kong
Mailing Address:
PSC 461
Box 5
FPO AP 96521-0006
Tel: (852) 2841-2211
Fax: (852) 2845-4845

Hong Kong’s Adoption Authority
Adoption Unit
Social Welfare Department
Room 201, 2/F., North Point Goverment Offices,
333 Java Road, North Point, Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 3595 1935
Fax: (852) 3595 0025


Diplomatic Mission for Hong Kong
The Embassy of the People’s Republic of China
2300 Connecticut Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008
Tel: (202) 328-2500
Fax: (202) 588-0032

*The People’s Republic of China also has consulates in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston, New York City, and Chicago.

Office of Children’s Issues
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street, NW
Washington, DC 20520
Tel:  1-888-407-4747


U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
For questions about immigration procedures, call the National Customer Service Center (NCSC)
1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833).

American Citizens residing in Hong Kong and Macau are served by the USCIS District Office in Bangkok, Thailand.
Phone:  +66-2-205-5352
Fax: +66-2-255-2917
Sindhorn, Tower 2, 15th Floor
130-133 Wireless Rd.
Lumpini Pathumwan
Bangkok Thailand 10330

Hong Kong Flag
Hong Kong

Map of Hong Kong


Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China and as such follows the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention) for all intents and purposes of implementing intercountry adoption policies.  Adoptions between Hong Kong SAR and the United States must meet the requirements of the Convention and U.S. law implementing the Convention. 

Note: Special transition provisions apply to adoptions initiated before April 1, 2008.  Learn more. 

The Government of Hong Kong tends to prefer that prospective adoptive parents are ethnic Chinese.   However, non-ethnic Chinese may also adopt if willing to consider an older child or a child with special needs.




Adoption between the United States and Hong Kong is governed by the Hague Adoption Convention.  Therefore to adopt from Hong Kong, you must first be found eligible to adopt by the U.S. Government.  The U.S. Government agency responsible for making this determination is the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).  Learn more.



Because Hong Kong has implemented the Hague Adoption Convention, children from Hong Kong must meet the requirements of the Convention in order to be eligible for adoption.  For example, the Convention requires that Hong Kong attempt to place a child with a family in-country before determining that a child is eligible for intercountry adoption.  In addition to Hong Kong’s requirements, a child must meet the definition of a Convention adoptee for you to bring him or her back to the United States.  Learn more about the Convention’s requirements for adoptable children. 

Hong Kong also has specific requirements that a child must meet in order to be eligible for adoption.  You cannot adopt a child in Hong Kong unless he or she meets the requirements outlined below.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Age Requirements: Children between the ages of six months and 18 years of age can be adopted.  (Statistics reflect that most children available for adoption are five years old or younger and some have health problems or are disabled.)


Hong Kong’s Adoption Authority
Adoption Unit of the Social Welfare Department

The Process

Because Hong Kong has implemented the Hague Adoption Convention, adopting from Hong Kong must follow a specific process designed to meet the Convention’s requirements. 

A brief summary of the Convention adoption process is given below.  You must complete these steps in the following order so that your adoption meets all necessary legal requirements.

Note:  If you filed your I-600a with Hong Kong before April 1, 2008, the Hague Adoption Convention may not apply to your adoption.  Your adoption could continue to be processed in accordance with the immigration regulations for non-Convention adoptions.  Learn more.

The process for adopting a child from Hong Kong generally includes the following steps:

1. Choose an Adoption Service Provider
2. Apply to be Found Eligible to Adopt
3. Be Matched with a Child
4. Adopt the Child in Hong Kong
5. Apply for the Child to be Found Eligible for Adoption
6. Bring Your Child Home


1.Choose an Adoption Service Provider  

The first step in adopting a child from Hong Kong is to select an adoption service provider in the United States that has been accredited.   Only these agencies and attorneys can provide adoption services between the United States and Hong Kong.  Learn more.


2. Apply to be Found Eligible to Adopt  

After you choose an accredited adoption service provider, you apply to be found eligible to adopt (Form I-800A) by the U.S. Government, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).   Learn how.   

Once the U.S. Government determines that you are “eligible” and “suitable” to adopt, you or your agency will forward your information to the adoption authority in Hong Kong.  Hong Kong’s adoption authority will review your application to determine whether you are also eligible to adopt under Hong Kong law. 

The Hong Kong-licensed provider will submit the adoption application to the Hong Kong central authority, including any preferences the prospective adoptive parents may have about the child’s age, sex, physical/medical condition, or region of origin within Hong Kong.  The application package should also include a cover letter, written along the lines found at the following web site:

The Hong Kong central authority reviews the documents and advises the prospective adoptive parent(s), either directly or through their adoption agency, whether additional documents or authentications are required.

For transition cases:  To bring an adopted child from Hong Kong to the United States, you must apply to be found eligible to adopt (Form I-600A) by the U.S. Government, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).  Learn how

In addition to meeting the U.S. requirements for adoptive parents, you need to meet the requirements of Hong Kong as described in the Who Can Adopt section. 


3. Be Matched with a Child 

If both the United States and Hong Kong determine that you are eligible to adopt, and a child is available for intercountry adoption, the central adoption authority in Hong King may provide you with a referral for a child.  Each family must decide for itself whether or not it will be able to meet the needs of the particular child and provide a permanent family placement for the referred child.  

Once the Hong Kong central authority approves the application, it matches the application with a specific child.  The central authority then sends the prospective adoptive parent(s) a letter of introduction about the child, including photographs and the child’s health record.  This document is commonly called a ‘referral.’  Prospective adoptive parents who still have questions about the child after reviewing this information may follow up with the Hong Kong central authority either directly or via their adoption agency.

The child must be eligible to be adopted according to Hong Kong’s requirements, as described in the Who Can Adopt section.  The child must also meet the definition of an orphan under U.S. law.  Learn more.


4. Adopt the Child (or Gain Legal Custody) in-country  

Prospective adoptive parent(s) then either accept or refuse the referral and send the document to their agency, which forwards it to the Hong Kong central authority.  If prospective adoptive parent(s) are considering refusing a referral they should discuss with their agency the possibility of getting a second referral.  After you accept a match with a child, you will apply to the U.S Government, Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for provisional approval to adopt that particular child (Form I-800).  USCIS will determine whether the child is eligible under U.S. law to be adopted and enter the United States.   Learn how

After this, your adoption service provider or you will submit a visa application to a Consular Officer at the U.S. Consulate General.  The Consular Officer will review the child’s information and evaluate the child for possible visa ineligibilities.  If the Consular Office determines that the child appears eligible to immigrate to the United States, he/she will notify the Chinese adoption authority (Article 5 letter).  For Convention country adoptions, prospective adoptive parent(s) may not proceed with the adoption or obtain custody for the purpose of adoption until this takes place. 

Remember:  The Consular Officer will make a final decision about the immigrant visa later in the adoption process. 


5. Apply for the Child to be Found Eligible for Adoption 

Remember:  Before you adopt (or gain legal custody of) a child in Hong Kong, you must have completed the above four steps.  Only after completing these steps, can you proceed to finalize the adoption or grant of custody for the purposes of adoption in Hong Kong. 

  • Role of The Adoption Authority: The Director of the Social Welfare Department reviews the documentation to determine if the adoption is in the best interests of the child.  Upon approval, the Social Welfare Department will file a court order to pass the care and control of the child to the Director of the U.S. adoption agency.  (If the prospective adoptive parents are residents of Hong Kong, the child is released into their home for at least six months.)   During the six months of living with the family, an adoption social worker makes periodic visits to determine if adoption by the prospective adoptive parents is in the best interest of the child.
  • Role of The Court: The District Court grants the adoption order and issues the final adoption certificate.  For non-residents of Hong Kong, the finalization of the adoption passes the care and control of the child from the U.S. adoption agency to the adoptive parents.
  • Role of Adoption Agencies: The adoption agency arranges the prospective adoptive parents’ home study.  The adoption agency works with one of the agencies in Hong Kong that have been accredited to facilitate international adoptions.  The U.S. adoption agency forwards the home study report and supporting documents to the Hong Kong accredited body.  The Hong Kong agency submits the documentation to the Social Welfare Department.  Currently, the following agencies have been accredited in Hong Kong to facilitate intercountry adoptions: International Social Service (ISS), Po Leung Kuk and Mother’s Choice Overseas Adoption Service. 

International Social Service Hong Kong Branch
6/F., Southorn Center
130 Hennessy Road
Wanchai, Hong Kong
Tel: (852) 2834-6863
Fax: (852) 2834-7627

(U.S. Office)
700 Light Street
Baltimore, MD 21230
Tel: (410) 230-2734
Fax: (410) 230-2741

Mother’s Choice
Overseas Adoption Service
Tel: (852) 2537-4122
Fax: (852) 2537-7681

Intercountry Adoption Service
Po Leung Kuk
66 Leighton Road,
Cause Bay Hong Kong
Tel.: (852) 2277 8368
Fsx: (852) 2577 7380

  • Adoption Application: The adoption application is filed with the Adoption Unit of the Social Welfare Department.
  • Time Frame: The average amount of time required to complete an intercountry adoption ranges from six to twelve months.  The timeframe may be increased if the prospective adoptive parents have specific requests regarding the child’s age and/or medical conditions.
  • Adoption Fees: The Social Welfare Department’s Adoption Unit provides an assessment of the prospective adoptive parents’ suitability to adopt at no charge.  Adoptive parents based in Hong Kong are required to pay $2,840 HK for acting as guardian ad litem while the adoption proceedings are finalized.  Prospective adoptive parents residing outside of Hong Kong are not required to pay this fee.
  • Documents Required: 

    The following is a list of documents required to adopt a child from Hong Kong:
    • Copy of U.S. passport;
    • Copy of marriage certificate (if applicable);
    • Evidence of termination of previous marriage (if applicable);
    • Proof of income;
    • Copies of school credentials;
    • Evidence of prior adoptions (if any); and
    • Satisfactory home study report and medical examination reports of the adopting parents.  (These documents are not required by Hong Kong to be authenticated.  The agencies in the U.S. engaging in adoptions submit notarized home study and physical exam reports in adoption cases.)

Note: Additional documents may be requested. 

6. Bring Your Child Home

Now that your adoption is complete (or you have obtained legal custody of the child), there are a few more steps to take before you can head home.   Specifically, you need to apply for several documents for your child before he or she can travel to the United States:

Birth Certificate
The Social Welfare Department will obtain the child’s original birth certificate (or certified duplicate) from the Hong Kong Birth Registry.  This document will then be passed to the agency that is caring for the child.  Adoptive parents can apply for their names to be added an annotations to the child’s birth certificate. 

Hong Kong Passport
Your child is not yet a U.S. citizen, so he/she will need a travel document or Passport from Hong Kong. 

U.S. Immigrant Visa 
After you obtain the new birth certificate and passport for your child, you also need to apply for an U.S. visa from the United States Consulate General for your child.  After the adoption (or custody for purpose of adoption) is granted, visit the U.S. Consulate General for final review and approval of the child’s I-800 petition and to obtain a visa for the child.  This immigrant visa allows your child to travel home with you.  As part of this process, the Consular Officer must be provided the “Panel Physician’s” medical report on the child if it was not provided during the provisional approval stage.  Learn more.


Child Citizenship Act

For adoptions finalized abroad: The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 allows your new child to acquire American citizenship automatically when he or she enters the United States as lawful permanent residents. 

For adoptions finalized in the United States: The Child Citizenship Act of 2000 allows your new child to acquire American citizenship automatically when the court in the United States issues the final adoption decree. 

*Please be aware that if your child did not qualify to become a citizen upon entry to the United States, it is very important that you take the steps necessary so that your child does qualify as soon as possible.  Failure to obtain citizenship for your child can impact many areas of his/her life including family travel, eligibility for education and education grants, and voting. 

Learn more about the Child Citizenship Act.


Statisitcs about adoption from Hong Kong



Applying for Your U.S. Passport

A valid U.S. passport is required to enter and leave Hong Kong.  Only the U.S. Department of State has the authority to grant, issue, or verify U.S. passports.

Getting or renewing a passport is easy. The Passport Application Wizard will help you determine which Passport form you need, help you to complete the form online, estimate your payment, and generate the form for you to print—all in one place.

Obtaining Your Visa

A Visa is not required for tourist visits of p to 90 days by U.S. citizens.  To find information about entry requirements for Hong Kong, see the Department of State’s Country Specific Information.  

Staying Safe on Your Trip

Before you travel, it's always a good practice to investigate the local conditions, laws, political landscape, and culture of the country.  The State Department is a good place to start.

The Department of State provides Country Specific Information for every country of the world about various issues, including the health conditions, crime, unusual currency or entry requirements, and any areas of instability. 

Staying in Touch on Your Trip

When traveling during the adoption process, we encourage you to register your trip with the Department of State. Travel registration makes it possible to contact you if necessary. Whether there’s a family emergency in the United States, or a crisis in Hong Kong, registration assists the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in reaching you.

Registration is free and can be done online




What does Hong Kong require of the adoptive parents after the adoption?

Hong Kong does not have any post-adoption requirements.

What resources are available to assist families after the adoption?

Many adoptive parents find it important to find support after the adoption.  Take advantage of all the resources available to your family -- whether it’s another adoptive family, a support group, an advocacy organization, or your religious or community services. 

Here are some good places to start your support group search:

Note:  Inclusion of non-U.S. Government links does not imply endorsement of contents.

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