International Adoption Frequently Asked Questions

Who can adopt an international child?

Each country has different parental requirements and qualifications in regards to age, marital status, length of marriage, and children already in the home. The counselors at Catholic Charities are happy to talk with you about which country will be the best fit for your family.

What countries are open for International Adoption?

Because Catholic Charities is a homestudy agency, we are able to work with most countries that are open to an international adoption. There are many countries open for adoption, but it is important to be aware that countries tend to open and close for the purpose of adoption depending on many circumstances. For a listing of countries available please visit the United States Department of State website at

What is a placing agency?

A placing agency is an agency that the adoptive parents(s) employ to handle their adoption process. This agency will have stateside offices as well as offices in the country from which the adoption is taking place. There are hundreds of placing agencies in the United States. However, there are few in the state of Tennessee so chances are you will be using a placing agency outside of our state. Stateside the placing agency is the handler of your paperwork. In country, the placing agency will help with travel details and legal proceedings.

What is a dossier?

A dossier usually consists of 13-15 documents that are put together by the adopting parents to send to the country they wish to adopt from. Examples of the documents to include are: financial reports, medical reports, pictures of the home, your homestudy, etc…

What is USCIS?

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. Anyone who wants to adopt internationally must file an I600A or an I800A (determined by the country from which you desire to adopt) with USCIS which will grant them approval as adoptive parents and eventually obtains their child an adoption visa on which they will enter the United States.