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You are here : home > Adoption > Private Contracts vs. Legal Adoption > Adoption Rules in India

Adoption Rules in India


Are you considering adopting a child? Here are some of the basic rules you need to know about this process.


Who is allowed to adopt a child?

In India, an Indian, Non Resident Indian (NRI), or a foreign citizen may adopt a child. There are specific guidelines and documentation for each group of prospective adoptive parents. A single female or a married couple can adopt a child. In India, a single male is usually not eligible to be an adoptive parent. An exception to this rule is the noted dance instructor Sandip Soparrkar, who has recently adopted a young boy. This is a special case rather than the norm. A single man desiring to adopt a child may be eligible if he applies through a registered agency. However, he will still only be able to adopt a male child.


What are the conditions to be fulfilled by an adoptive parent?

An adoptive parent should be medically fit and financially able to care for a child. A person wishing to adopt a child must be at least 21 years old. There is no legal upper age limit for parents but most adoptive agencies set their own benchmarks with regard to age. For a child who is less than a year old, the adoptive parents can have a maximum combined age of 90 years. Also, neither parent must be older than 45 years.

In the case of adoption of older children, the age of the parents may be relaxed accordingly. For example, for a one-year-old child, the age limit is 46 years, for a two-year-old child, it is 47 years and so on. The upper age limit for an adopted child is 12 years while for an adoptive parent it is 55 years. In the case of an adopted child with special needs, the age limit may be relaxed marginally by the state government, depending on the evaluation of the case. However, in all cases, the age of the parent cannot exceed 55 years.


What are the laws governing adoption?

Indian citizens who are Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, or Buddhists are allowed to formally adopt a child. The adoption is under the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act of 1956. Under this act, a single parent or married couple are not permitted to adopt more than one child of the same sex. Foreign citizens, NRIs, and those Indian nationals who are Muslims, Parsis, Christians or Jews are subject to the Guardian and Wards Act of 1890. Under this act, the adoptive parent is only the guardian of the child until she reaches 18 years of age.

Foreign citizens and NRIs are supposed to formally adopt their child according to the adoption laws and procedures in the country of their residence. This must be carried out within two years of the individual becoming a child's guardian. There is also a Juvenile Justice Act of 2000, a part of which deals with adoption of children by non-Hindu parents. However, this act is applicable only to children who have been abandoned or abused and not to those children who have been voluntarily put up for adoption.


Can a parent ask for a specific child?

An adoptive parent is allowed to ask for a child, as per her preferences. For example a parent may ask for a child of a certain age, gender (if it is the first child in the family), skin colour, religion, special features, health condition, etc. However, greater the specifications, more difficult it is to find a child who conforms to them. This restricts the pool of children available for adoption.

Depending on the adoptive parent's desired details, children are scrutinised to find a suitable match. When a child with the desired characteristics is found, she is shown to the prospective parents. In case the parents are unhappy with the selection, about two more children with the same characteristics may be presented to the parents.


The entire adoption process takes some months to complete. However, when all the hurdles are cleared, you are ready to welcome your new child to the family.

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Recent comments (213 comments)
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Comment: 
Name: swetha
Country: India

I am 31 yrs old and I am 32 weeks pregnant right now. I have a boy who is nine years old. I am planning to give my baby to childless parents who are desparately in need of a kid. MY delivery date is on OCt 15,2014. Please contact me at nine five nine seven five five one zero seven two.
 
Name: Syed Z. Hussain
Country: India

Hi all, I advise NRI and local citizens of India on the legal procedure and compliances for adopting a child from India. Contact me if you may require any help!! My email is: zomaelhussain@y ahoo.in
 
Name: Kaushal
Country: Australia

Dear all, We are NRIs and Australian Citizen. We would like to adobt child from India. Could you lease guide us? Thanks
 
Name: Kaushal
Country: Australia

Dear all, We are NRIs and Australian Citizen. We would like to adobt child from India. Could you lease guide us? Thanks
 
Name: jasskaran
Country: India

I wish to be a father of my girl..my daughter... I wish to adobt my angel..ii wish this from so many years.. My heart commited to this for more than over a year and i dream of my daughter every single second.... I dream of our future with one another...when she grew big..go to school.. I take her to school and bring home..cook for her..help her in homework..take her to play ground..play with her..meet her friendss...read and told her stories during night and watch her sleeping when i m still reading the stories...and listen her..and finally one day see her married with who she love.... But all my dreamss my future just destroy in one single second...more than year i m dreaming and than i come to know that single male parent not allowed to adopt a girl child... Evry time my heart hit with this my eyes start crying... This rule...its not fare... Why a singl girl is aallowed to adopt a boy child then... This is so unfair... I dont say they also dont .allow.. But i say check for the male background...his income...but allow all who dream so much happiness for the little girl...plzzz i m from india... Plzz help me and tell this is possible...
 
Name: Mithun Soni
Country: Kuwait

Hi, we are happly married couple from last 10 years with a boy of 5 years old. We would like to adopt a baby girl from India and raise her in our family in Kuwait. Please help us understand the procedure. Regards.
 
Name: Pooja
Country: India

Hi, This is pooja i am 28 years old and want to be a gaurdian of a boy who has no parents, of age 29 can u let me knows the laws for the same...
 
Name: karish
Country: Mauritius

Dear Sir/Madam I am 34yrs & my husband 39...we really want to adopt a baby ....may you help me plz...thxns very much
 
Name: prix
Country: India

Is it possible to adopt a child directly from the mother with all the legal procedure or can we adopt only through an agency? I've heard people say adopting directly from parents is illegal and comes under human trafficking. Please help
 
Name: Subhajyoti
Country: India

Hi As per the rule no single man can adopt a girl.why is it so??? And if any unmarried male want to adopt a baby girl than how it can be possible and what is the way out of it....pls suggest
 
Name: bobel
Country: Italy

Hi i am married and boys of us 30 year and we are tuo girl 2 year,5 year.in future we want to adopted a child.can you help us.we live in italy last 13 year. Thanks
 
Name: shweta
Country: India

hi... i am a single lady (28years) and i always wanted to have two daughters... i have no plans for getting married in future..the rule says a single lady can not adopt two children of same sex.them how did sushmita sen or ravina tondon adopted? please update me with that. thanks
 
Name: shweta
Country: India

hi... i am a single lady (28years) and i always wanted to have two daughters... i have no plans for getting married in future..the rule says a single lady can not adopt two children of same sex.them how did sushmita sen or ravina tondon adopted? please update me with that. thanks
 
Name: shweta
Country: India

hi... i am a single lady (28years) and i always wanted to have two daughters... i have no plans for getting married in future..the rule says a single lady can not adopt two children of same sex.them how did sushmita sen or ravina tondon adopted? please update me with that. thanks
 
Name: shweta
Country: India

hi... i am a single lady (28years) and i always wanted to have two daughters... i have no plans for getting married in future..the rule says a single lady can not adopt two children of same sex.them how did sushmita sen or ravina tondon adopted? please update me with that. thanks
 
Name: golu
Country: India

if the child is left alone after the adoptation than under which rule he/she should clame. above adoption is done to japan from india. under which act it falls.? please rply soon.
 
Name: golu
Country: India

what are the adoptation cancelation rules ,if the child is adopted from india to japan.
 
Name: daleepdixit
Country: India

dear all sir i child denoted please contract me.my mail.
 
Name: RAM
Country: India

We are married myself 53 yrs a medical doctor wife 50 yrs in good reputated govt job in punjab want adopt girl child of older age between 10-12 years age
 
Name: Puru
Country: U.S.A.

I am 51 years old and my wife is 50. I am a software engineer working in America and I am financially well-to-do. We would like to adopt a child around 3 yrs old. Can you please help us?
 
Name: Sambasiva rao
Country: India

i am. Divorced male wants.to adopt.girl child newly born or between 1and 3 yrs age pls advice thanks my age is 32 yrs
 
Name: Nikhil
Country: India

i am.single male wants.to adopt.girl child newly born or between 1and 3 yrs age pls advice thanks my age is 35 yrs
 
Name: smitha
Country: India

Hi, im 27 and im planing to to adopt a baby girl. Even though im nt planning for a marriage. My financial status is below average but im looking forward a job in Dubai. I can give all the love and care like how a mom can give. Kindly can uu help me out with the rules and regulations. Thankyou
 
Name: kailash
Country: India

want to adopt a baby boy,preferably new born or less than one year old. please help.
 
Name: Jyoti
Country: India

I am 52 years old, my husband is 48. I am a qualified CA, and my husband and I run our own business in India. We would like to adopt an older child, or perhaps 2 children - around the age of 8 or 10. It would be ideal if the two children are siblings. Can you help us.


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Discussion Forum - Recent Posts
Do you know someone who has adopted a child? Are you considering adoption to add a member to your family? Do you have any other questions about the adoption process in India?
Writuparna
am 27 year old single woman want to adopt a girl child. what are the formalities and from where i can get better and direct information. btw thank for the info here...
babita
no such law....
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Hello Editor
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