There are three different ways to immigrate an adoptive child from overseas to become a lawful permanent resident or to become a U.S. citizen.
The first way is through the Hague Adoption Convention program. The Hague Adoption Convention became effective for the United States on April 1, 2008, and created a new process for immigrating adoptive children who reside in countries that are also party to the Hague Adoption Convention. A Hague Convention adoption requires filing of a Form I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country, and Form I-800, Petition to Classify Convention Adoptee as an Immediate Relative.
The second way is through the orphan adoption program. This requires filing Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition, and Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative. The orphan adoption program is not available if the adoptive child is from a Hague Adoption Convention country.
Because of the many distinctions in these adoption methods, U.S. citizens who are interested in adopting a child from another country should first decide on a specific country from which to adopt. To view a list of countries that participate in the Hague Adoption Convention, please see the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov.
The third way is through immediate relative processing by filing Form I-130, Petition for an Alien Relative.
The three methods to immigrate an adoptive child are separate and distinct and cannot be combined.