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How does the Child Citizenship Act affect adopted children?

Adopting a child from another country can be one of the most rewarding things life offers, for both the adopters and the adoptee. The child gets a chance at a new life, often escaping abject poverty or oppressive regimes to have a shot at a loving family and a good education. The adoptive parents get the pleasure and fulfillment that comes with raising a child in an atmosphere of love.

Of course, if you've ever considered adopting a foreign-born child, you know how long and arduous the process can be. Even once you've found the perfect child for your situation, there are a host of hurdles to jump through, especially with countries that seemingly make the ordeal as taxing as possible.

With that in mind, once you've brought home your little bundle of joy, you don't want to have to go through yet another painstaking process to get him or her citizenship, do you? Thankfully, in most cases, a child adopted by U.S. parents is automatically considered a U.S. citizen. So, how do you know if your adopted child qualifies? It's rather simple:

  • One parent must be a citizen of the Unites States.
  • The child must be less than 18 years of age.
  • He or she must be living here and be in legal custody of the U.S. parent.
  • All immigration laws must have been followed throughout the adoption.

You may want to request a certificate of citizenship for your adopted child, which can be done using Form N-600 from the USCIS. As always, an immigration attorney can help guide you through the process.

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