Apply for local adoption with intercountry element

What you should do
How long does it take
How much does it cost
Forms to complete
Who to contact



About applying for local adoption with an inter-country element

If you are a foreigner living in South Africa and want to adopt a South African child, you must contact an accredited social worker or an adoption organisation. The organisation need not be accredited for inter-country adoptions.

You must have been in South Africa for a period of five years and must submit proof of residence and your work permit. You application for the adoption will be regarded as national adoption.

Inter-country adoption is the placement of a child in the permanent care of a person residing in a foreign country who is not their biological parent or guardian. It offers a permanent family to a child for whom a suitable family cannot be found in their country of origin.

What you should do

  1. Contact your nearest appropriate adoption organisation.
  2. The adoption organisation will conduct a screening/home study to check if you are fit and proper to adopt a child.
  3. If the organisation is satisfied with the results, they will put you on the Register of Adoptable Children and Adoptive Parents while they help you search for a child who is available for adoption.
  4. If a child is available, they will call you to the offices to meet the child and ask you if you are interested in adopting the child.
  5. If you agree, they will send your report to the Children’s Court to finalise the adoption and issue an adoption order.
  6. The court report will be sent to the Department of Social Development for them to check if the correct procedure was followed and to record both your and the child’s details.

How long does it take

It differs from one case to another.

How much does it cost

You must pay an accredited child protection organisation in respect of an inter-country adoption.

 Group orientation  R2 250 per session
 Interview/counselling R250 per hour
 Home visits    R250 per hour
 Home study report  R500 per report
 Court processes        R500 per day
 Birth registration   R170 per hour
 Administration costs  R170 per hour
 After care services R500 once-off payment
 Origin enquiry/tracing R200 per hour

Forms to complete

All forms are available at your nearest Department of Social Development office.

Who to contact

Toll Free Line: 0800 60 10 11