Monday, January 17, 2011

Update on New Ethiopian Adoption Procedure

All adoptive families will now be required to submit a notarized, certified and authenticated copy of their I-171H approval letter (also sometimes called Notice of Favorable Determination) for MoWA review before they can be given court approval. Depending on where the family is in the process at this point, the requirements will vary.

1. If the family has passed court no additional proof of I-171H is required. The original will still be required at Embassy.

2. If the family has been to court but not given approval, or has an upcoming court appointment scheduled, they need to submit the notarized, certified and authenticated copy of their I-171H approval as quickly as possible. Please see procedure below.

3. If the family has submitted their dossier, but has not yet received a referral for a child, they must submit their notarized, certified and authenticated copy of their I-171H approval before they can be matched with a child in Ethiopia. A family CAN still receive their referral, but it will not be made official with MoWA until the I-171H is received.

4. If the family is in the process of assembling their dossier, they will need to submit the notarized and state certified letter with their dossier. They will not need to have it authenticated separately, it can be done with the rest of the dossier. Beginning immediately, families will not be able to be put on the wait list without the I-171H.

The procedure for submitting the I-171H is as follows:

1. Notarize a copy of the I-171H. Attach a separate sheet stating:

We/I, (insert adoptive parents names here), hereby affirm that the following document is a true and correct copy of my original I-171H approval.

_______________Sign and date here

Subscribed and sworn to before me, a Notary Public, in the county of _________, state of ______________, this _____ day of ______________, 2011.

Notary signature and date here

2. Send or take the notarized copy to your secretary of state for certification. A list of locations and requirements can be found at:

3. Send the notarized and certified copy, along with payment, to IAN. We will then send it to Washington DC for certification by the secretary of state and authentication by the Ethiopian embassy. We will have it sent directly on to Ethiopia.

Fee schedule for I-171H approval

Authentication Fee (Ethiopian Embassy): $94

Certification Fee (US Secretary of State): $8
Document handling fees: $30

Shipping: $40
TOTAL $172

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