When children who reside outside of the United States are adopted, they are issued visas so that they can enter the country. The Department of State issues visas through the consulates and embassies in the countries in which the children live. After obtaining the visas, the children can enter Georgia or any other U.S. state.
Orphan children who are adopted from non-Hague Convention countries are issued either IR-3 or IR-4 visas. An IR-3 visa is issued for final adoptions and requires the parents or one of the parents to see the children in person before or throughout the adoption. An IR-4 visa is issued to children who are entering the country for adoption, were adopted overseas by one married parent or were not seen in person before or throughout the adoption.
The visa types for children adopted from Hague Convention countries are IH-3 and IH-4. The IH-3 visa is for children entering the country with final adoptions, while the IH-4 visa is for children entering the country to be adopted. Other adopted children are issued IR-2 visas. In these cases, the adoptive parents are citizens and the children immigrate before they turn 21 and are not yet married. The IR-2 visa is also issued to adopted children who are over the age of 21 but are treated as younger than 21 as part of the Child Status Protection Act.
The visa type that is issued to an adopted immigrant child is important because it determines the steps that the adoptive parent or parents need to take to obtain citizenship for the child. For example, children with certain visas automatically gain citizenship under certain conditions, while others become permanent residents and may apply for naturalization when they are eligible. Adoptive parents who need help with these steps could consult immigration attorneys.