Per CARA, the adoption authority of India, families can apply to adopt a child with a medical need of any age, or a healthy child over the age of 5 years. If a family has OCI or NRI Indian heritage status they are eligible to request a child of any age, healthy or with a medical need. These are general guidelines and India staff should be contacted for more specifics at

About India Adoption

America World has been licensed to work in India since 2006. Over the years, AWAA staff members have had the privilege of meeting CARA adoption officials, US Embassy staff members and representatives from over 30 orphanages across India. AWAA has the ability to work with registered RIPA’s that are licensed to complete international adoption. AWAA currently employs full and part time staff in India to facilitate the adoption process and provide guide services to families while they are traveling in India.

The children who have recently come home from India have ranged in age from infants to teenagers with medical needs such as HIV, blood conditions, heart conditions, vision impairment, hearing impairment, cleft lip and palate, cerebral palsy, developmental delays and other correctible medical conditions. Families who are of Indian heritage and have either OCI or NRI status may request to adopt healthy children. However, all foreign families must be open to adopting a child with a medical need, a sibling set or a healthy older child.

Children may be orphaned in India due to poverty, disease, family or personal issues. India follows the best practices and standards according to the Hague adoption guidelines to try to re-unite the child with their biological family if at all possible, and when not possible to seek a domestic and then international adoptive family.

AWAA staff has over 20 years of experience facilitating adoptions in India and working with both orphanages and CARA, the Central Adoption Resource Authority. Our highly experienced and dedicated staff welcomes the opportunity to partner with you for your adoption from India.

Adoption Process

India’s international adoption process is done in accordance with Hague Convention guidelines on inter-country adoption of children.

After being accepted into the India Program, families are assigned a Family Coordinator, who is their main point of contact for the duration of the adoption process. With the help of the Family Coordinator, prospective adoptive parents begin collecting documents for the “dossier,” which is a compilation of paperwork that will be sent to India to show the parents are qualified to adopt. During the home study process, which is part of compiling the dossier, the social worker visits the family’s home and the family completes trainings and preparations to show they are prepared to parent an adopted child. Families will discuss their child request and if they are open to medical needs or adopting older children. AWAA has many recommended resources and training to assist families with this process.

After completion of home study and dossier a family is able to receive a referral as soon once their home study is uploaded on CARINGS and reviewed and approved by CARA. The CARINGS database is an internal website portal where AWAA can upload the parent’s home study and eventually the parents will be matched by CARA to a specific child. Families of Indian heritage also have the opportunity to be matched by CARA directly to a specific orphanage. A family is able to receive a referral as soon as their home study is uploaded on CARINGS and reviewed and approved by CARA. The wait time to review a referral will depend on the family’s child requests and the children who are available for adoption.

After a family receives a referral, they review it with medical professionals, international specialists and their social worker. If a family accepts the referral, AWAA will help the complete the necessary paperwork. AWAA sends the completed dossier and referral paperwork directly to the orphanage for further processing. Families will then wait 8-18 months as a general timeframe for approval to occur within India, each family’s process and timeframe varies. AWAA will assist the family in understanding these approvals and paperwork processes.

After the approvals have occurred and the child has received their Indian passport, the family travels to the orphanage and will be accompanied by an AWAA adoption facilitator. The family travels to Delhi to complete the child’s medical exam and visa paperwork. The total time in India can range from 10-14 days. America World’s staff will coordinate travel logistics, including air and ground transportation, lodging, and some meals. Upon returning home, the AWAA post adoption department will assist the family with adjusting to life with their new child and understanding the re-adoption and post adoption report requirements. The post adoption report requirements will vary for each family as the judge will decree in the court order how many reports they want to see, and the orphanage director also has the right to request a certain amount of post adoption reports.

The post adoption department will support a family for years after the adoption is completed and is always available to help families with resources, support and training.