Completing Intercountry Adoptions Not Finalized Abroad - Connecticut

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Requirements for Completing the Adoption

Citation: Gen. Stat. §§ 45a-727; 45a-725; Agency Regs. § 17a-150-119

Each adoption matter shall be instituted by filing an application in a probate court, together with the written agreement of adoption, in duplicate. One of the duplicates shall be sent immediately to the Commissioner of Children and Families.

An application for the adoption of a minor child not related to the adoptive parents shall not be accepted by the probate court unless the child sought to be adopted has been placed for adoption by the Commissioner of Children and Families or a child-placing agency, and the placement for adoption has been approved by the commissioner or a child-placing agency. The commissioner or a child-placing agency may place a child in adoption who has been identified or located by a prospective parent, provided any such placement shall be made in accordance with regulations promulgated by the commissioner. If any such placement is not made in accordance with such regulations, the adoption application shall not be approved by the probate court.

The probate court shall request the commissioner or a child-placing agency to make an investigation and written report to it, in duplicate, within 60 days from the receipt of such request. A duplicate of the report shall be sent immediately to the Commissioner of Children and Families. Upon the expiration of the 60-day period or upon the receipt of such report, whichever is first, the probate court shall set a day for a hearing upon the agreement and shall give reasonable notice of the hearing to the parties to the agreement; the child-placing agency, if such agency is involved in the adoption; the Commissioner of Children and Families; and the child, if he or she is age 12 or older.

At the hearing, the court may deny the application, enter a final decree approving the adoption if it is satisfied that the adoption is in the best interests of the child, or order a further investigation and written report to be filed, in duplicate, within whatever period of time it directs. A duplicate of such report shall be sent to the commissioner.

The probate court shall ascertain as far as possible the date and the place of birth of the child and shall incorporate such facts in the final decree, a copy of which shall be sent to the Commissioner of Children and Families.

A minor child shall be considered free for adoption if, in the case of any child from outside the United States, its territories, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the child was placed for adoption by the Commissioner of Children and Families or by any child-placing agency, and the petitioner has filed an affidavit that the child has no living parents or that the child is free for adoption and that the rights of all parties in connection with the child have been properly terminated under the laws of the jurisdiction in which the child was domiciled before being removed to the State of Connecticut.

In regulation: Children being placed into Connecticut from other States or countries with Connecticut families for the purpose of adoption shall comply with the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children.

Required Evidence/Documentation

Citation: Gen. Stat. § 46b-129b

The Department of Children and Families shall prepare and submit with the petition for adoption an adoption social study regarding the proposed adoption, which shall include, but not be limited to, information required in reports filed with the probate court pursuant to § 45a-727. All studies and reports filed with or subsequent to the filing of the petition for adoption shall be available to the adoptive parents. The studies and reports shall be admissible in evidence subject to the right of any interested party to require that the person making it appear as a witness, if available, and such person shall be subject to examination. The court shall, to the extent possible, protect the confidentiality of the birth relatives, unless such information has been previously disclosed.

Background Studies

Citation: Gen. Stat. § 45a-727; Agency Regs. §§ 17a-150-90; 17a-150-122

The probate court shall request the commissioner or a child-placing agency to make an investigation and written report to it within 60 days from the receipt of such request. A duplicate of the report shall be sent immediately to the commissioner.

The report shall indicate the physical and mental status of the child and also shall contain such facts as may be relevant to determine whether the proposed adoption will be in the best interests of the child, including the physical, mental, genetic, and educational history of the child and the physical, mental, social, and financial condition of the parties to the agreement and the birth parents of the child, if known. The report shall include a history of physical, sexual, or emotional abuse suffered by the child, if any.

The physical, mental, and genetic history of the child shall include information about the following:

  • The child's health status at the time of placement
  • The child's birth, neonatal, and other medical, psychological, psychiatric, and dental history information
  • A record of immunizations for the child
  • The available results of medical, psychological, psychiatric, and dental examinations of the child

The report shall include information, to the extent known, about existing relationships between the child and the child's siblings, birth parents, extended family, and other persons who have had physical possession of or legal access to the child. The educational history of the child shall include, to the extent known, information about the enrollment and performance of the child in educational institutions, results of educational testing and standardized tests for the child, and special educational needs, if any, of the child.

In regulation: Each child-placing agency shall conduct an assessment of any applicant for a prospective adoptive family approval. The assessment shall include the applicant as well as all members of the applicant's household. The assessment shall include, but not necessarily be limited to, the physical condition of the home; the health of the applicant and other members of the household; and the ability of the applicant to provide an environment that will advance the physical, mental, emotional, educational, and societal development of each adoptive child who may be placed in such home.

Out-of-country child-placing agencies seeking to place children into Connecticut for the purpose of adoption shall provide the following:

  • A copy of their current license from the approving authority in their country or a reference statement from the approving authority stating they are authorized to place children for adoption
  • A description of the services available to Connecticut families
  • A statement agreeing to continue responsibility for placement planning and placement in another home if the placement fails
  • Other information as the department may require
  • Notification to the department of any significant child-placing agency changes after approval

Out-of-country child-placing agencies shall not place a child from Connecticut into Connecticut.

Placement Supervision and Reporting

This issue is not addressed in the statutes and regulations reviewed.

Effect of Adoption Decree on Parental Rights

Citation: Gen. Stat. § 45a-731

A final decree of adoption, whether issued by a court of this State or a court of any other jurisdiction, shall have the following effect in this State:

  • All rights, duties, and other legal consequences of the biological relation of a child and parent shall thereafter exist between the adopted person and the adoptive parent and the relatives of such adoptive parent. The adoptive parent and the adopted person shall have rights of inheritance from and through each other and the biological and adopted relatives of the adoptive parent. The right of inheritance of an adopted person extends to the heirs of such adopted person, and such heirs shall be the same as if such adopted person were the biological child of the adoptive parent.
  • The adopted person and the biological children and other adopted children of the adoptive parent shall be treated, unless otherwise provided by statute, as siblings, having rights of inheritance from and through each other.
  • Except in the case of a stepparent adoption, the legal relationship between the adopted person and the adopted person's birth parent or parents and the relatives of such birth parent or parents is terminated for all purposes, including the applicability of statutes that do not expressly include such an adopted person in their operation and effect. The birth parent or parents of the adopted person are relieved of all parental rights and responsibilities.

Obtaining a U.S. Birth Certificate

Citation: Gen. Stat. § 7-54

The Department of Public Health shall prepare a certification of birth registration or a certificate of foreign birth for any person born outside of the country and adopted by a resident of this State, provided (1) an authenticated and exemplified copy of the order of adoption of the court of the district in which the adoption proceedings were had, or such other evidence as is considered satisfactory by the probate court for the district in which such person resides, is filed with such probate court, and (2) such probate court notifies the department that such copy or satisfactory evidence has been so filed. Such certification of birth registration shall contain only the adopted name, sex, date of birth, place of birth, and date of preparation of such certification of birth registration by the department. Such certificate of foreign birth shall contain the adopted name, sex, date of birth, place of birth, legal name of adoptive parent or parents, and date of preparation of such certificate of foreign birth. No certification of birth registration or certificate of foreign birth shall be prepared by the department unless upon specific written request of the person to whom the certification of birth registration relates, if age 16 or older, or of the adopting parent or parents or the probate court for the district in which the adoption proceedings were had. When the department has prepared such certificate of birth registration or certificate of foreign birth, copies thereof shall be issued by the department in accordance with the provisions of § 7-52(a).

The adoptive parent or parents of an adopted person born outside of the country and adopted by a resident of this State, or such adopted person if age 18 or older, may apply to the probate court for the district in which the adopted person resides for a determination of the biological age and date of birth of the adopted person. The probate court shall hold a hearing on the application and receive medical and other evidence relevant to the issue of biological age and date of birth of the adopted person. After such hearing, the probate court may issue a decree to establish the biological age and date of birth of the adopted person. If the biological age and date of birth established in the decree is different from the biological age and date of birth in the certification of birth registration or a certificate of foreign birth, the probate court shall provide a certified copy of the decree to the department. Any certification of birth registration or certificate of foreign birth issued by the department after the date the department receives such decree shall reflect the date of birth in such decree.