Contents of Administrative procedures - Department of Justice

Procedure Registration for child adoption with foreign elements (non-nominal request)
Process

Step 1: An adopter submits dossier to the Department of Child Adoption under the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) through a foreign organization involved in child adoption based in Viet Nam. If there is no such an organization, he/she will submit dossier through Vietnamese diplomatic representation or general consulate in the country.
Step 2: The Department of Child Adoption receives and checks dossiers; if necessary, opinions from experts will be invoked.  
Step 3: The Department of Child Adoption hands the dossiers over to the Department of Justice.
Step 4: The Department of Justice recommends a child and reports to the provincial People’s Committee.
Step 5: The Department of Justice hands  one set of  dossier of the child over to the Department of Child Adoption enclosed with written approval from the Municipal People’s Committee.
Step 6: The Department of Child Adoption checks the result of child recommendation, and if necessary they will invoke experts’ opinions in terms of psychology, health, family and society.
Step 7: The Department of Child Adoption makes an assessment of the conditions of the child to be adopted and submits it to competent authority of the country where the foreign adopter resides.
Step 8: The adopter sends his/her written agreement and paper of certification from competent authority to confirm that the child is allowed to enter and reside in the country where he/ she will be adopted.
Step 9: The Department of Child Adoption informs the Departmentn of Justice of the agreement from the adopter.
Step 10: The Department of Justice submits the Decision on child adoption to the provincial People’s Committee.
Step 11: After the provincial People’s Committee finalizes issued the Decision, the Department of Justice will inform the adopter to arrive in Viet Nam for child adoption.
Step 12: The Department of Justice fulfills the procedures of child adoption in accordance with the law; the handover of child adoption will be held at the Department of Justice.
Step 13: MoJ certifies that child adoption has been fulfilled in accordance with the Law on Child Adoption, and with international conventions to which Viet Nam is a member (if required).

Where to submit Where to lodge - In case of non-nominal request, adopter residing in the country which is member of international conventions on child adoption, to which Viet Nam also belongs, will submit the dossier to MoJ’s Department of Child Adoption through a licensed child adoption organization of that country based in Viet Nam. If the country has no licensed child adoption organization in Viet Nam, the adopter will submit dossier via its diplomatic representation or general consulate in Viet Nam. - If a foreigner residing in Viet Nam applies for child adoption, the dossier of adopter and of the adoptee will be submitted to the Ha Noi Department of Justice in case the recommended child resides in Ha Noi. - The agency that processes dossier from the child adopter is the Department of Child Adoption under the Ministry of Justice at 58 – 60 Tran Phu Street, Ba Dinh District, Ha Noi. - The agency that processes dossier of the adopted child is the Ha Noi Department of Justice at 1B Tran Phu Street, Ha Dong, Ha Noi.
Contents and number of the dossier

I. Dossier of the adopter:
1. Papers to be submitted
1.1 Application Form for child adoption (as the sample attached);
1.2 Copies of passport or other legal alternative paper;
1.3 Documents related to the approval of child adoption in Viet Nam;
1.4 Results of the investigation into psychology and family;
1.5 Documents on health status;
1.6 Certified documents on incomes and property;
1.7 Criminal record;
1.8 Document to certify marriage status.
All papers from 1.2 to 1.8 must be made, issued or certified by foreign competent authorities of the country where the adopter resides permanently.
Note: Papers issued by foreign competent authorities must be translated into Vietnamese and legally formalized at a Vietnamese diplomatic representation or General Consulate overseas, except for particular cases in which consular legalization is exempted in conformity with international treiaties to which Viet Nam is member or in conformity with principle of reciprocity.
II. Dossier of the adopted child
1. Birth Certificate;
2. Health Certificate issued by competent health establishment at district level or upper level;
3. Two photos of full body and direct looking, taken no more than 6 months;
4. For an abandoned child: Certified paper issued by People’s Committee or Police in the commune where the abandoned child is found;
For an orphan: Death Certificate of his/her natural mother/ natural father; or Decision of the Court, confirming the death of natural mother/ natural father of the child;
For an adopted child with his/ her natural father/natural mother are reported as missing: Decision of the Court to announce the missing of natural father/ mother;
For an adopted child with his/ her natural father/natural mother who has lost capacity for civil acts : the Decision of the Court to announce that his/her natural father/ natural mother has  lost capacity for civil acts;
5. For children in care center: Decision on receving child;
6. Papers on characteristics, the likes and remarkable habits of the child, except for cases, in which step mother/ father adopts the stepchild of her/ his spouse;
7. Papers to prove that finding a Vietnamese family for the child has failed, although all efforts have been made:
- Papers issued by the Department of Justice enclosed with papers, documents on the authority’s announcement on finding a replacing family in Viet Nam for the child;
- Paper issued by the Department of Child Adoption, confirming that time for child adoption as stipulated has ended, but nobody in the country has applied for adoption  
Note: For child living in the family, natural father/ mother or guardian prepares the dossier; for child living in care center, the care center prepares dossier.
Number of dossier:
1. Dossier of the adopter: 2 sets  
Submission at MoJ’s Department of Child Adoption
2. Dossier of the child recommended for adoption: 3 sets
Submission at the Ha Noi Department of Justice if the child is residing in Ha Noi

Processing duration 1. Timeline for the Department of Justice to check and confirm that the child meets all requirements to be adopted: - For a child living with his/ her family: Procedures will be fulfilled within 20 days after receiving the set of appropriate and valid dossiers. - For an abandoned child that needs to be certified by the city Police Department, timeline for finalization will be 30 days since the Police Department receives request from the Department of Justice. 2. 15 days after receiving the set of appropriate and valid dossiers for the Department of Child Adoption to check and evaluate the dossier of adopter 3. 30 days after receiving dossier of adopter, the Department of Justice shall recommend the child and report to the Municipal People’s Committee 4. Ten days since receiving dossier of the Department of Justice, the Municipal People’s Committee shall give their opinions about Department of Justice’s child recommendation. 5. 30 days since receiving results of child recommendation, the Department of Adoption shall check the report and inform the adopter. 6. 15 days since receiving letter of agreement from competent authority in the country where the adopter resides, the Department of Child Adoption shall inform the Department of Justice of the agreement of adopter, and confirm that the child can enter and reside in foreign country. 7. The Ha Noi People’s Committee will decide and allow foreigner to adopt the child in 15 days since receiving the Department of Justice’s report on the announcement from MoJ’s Department of Child Adoption.
Objects 1. Overseas Vietnamese/ or foreigner residing permanently in the country as a member of the international convention on child adoption, to which Viet Nam also belongs; 2. A Vietnamese citizen living in Viet Nam, who wishes to adopt a foreign child;
Competent agency Department of Justice
Outcome - Decision on allowing adoption of Vietnamese child; - In case of rejection, MọJ/ Ha Noi People’s Committee/ the Ha Noi Department of Justice will provide their written answers detailing the reasons for rejection.
Fee 1. Registration for adoption of a foreign child: VND 9,000,000 2. Reduction or exemption will be realized as followings : - 50 % reduction for registration in the following cases if natural aunt/ natural uncle adopts their own niece/ nephew, or stepfather/ stepmother adopts the child of their spouse. - If the applicant adopts two children or more, who are siblings, 50 % reduction will be applied from the second child. 3. Fees for foreign child adoption: - Paying partner: Foreigners who do not reside permanently in Viet Nam and adopt the recommended Vietnamese child - Fee: VND 50,000,000 - Free of charge in following cases: + Aunt/ uncle adopts their own niece/ nephew or stepfather/ stepmother adopts the child of their spouse; + Children are cleft lip and palate, blind with one or two eyes damaged, dumb and deaf; children with bowed legs or hands; children without fingers or feet, hands; children suffering from HIV or heart diseases; children with umbilical hernia, groin, abdomen; children without anal or genital; children suffering from blood disorders or disease that need lifelong treatment; disabled children or children with dangerous diseases that limit their opportunity for being adopted.
Form/Declaration

- Application Form for adoption of Vietnamese child (for non-nominal request) TP/CN-2014/CNNNg.04.a  
- Paper on summary of the characteristics, the likes and habits of the child - TP/CN-2014/CNNNg.05
 (The attached sample, or downloaded from www.sotuphaphanoi.gov.vn )

Other requirements 1. Realization of procedures of registration for adoption of a foreign child must assure the following principles, namely, legitimate rights and benefits of adoptee and adopter, voluntariness, equality, no discrimination between man and woman and no violations of the laws and social ethics. 2. Only when a Vietnamese child cannot find an alternative family for his or her own in Viet Nam; can he/she be adopted to foreigner. 3. Requirements for adopter: a - Meeting requirements according to the law of the country where he/ she resides; b - Having full capacity for civil acts; c - Being at least 20 years older than the adoptee; d - Having good health, economic conditions, and accommodation which can ensure the care and education for adopted child; e - Having good moral behavior. Note: In the above mentioned conditions, condition c and d are not applied to aunt/ uncle adopting their own niece/ nephew or stepfather/ stepmother adopting the child of their spouse. 4. The following people are not allowed to adopt children: - People whose rights on their minor children are being restricted; - People who are serving a sentence of administrative sanctions in educational / or medical establishments; - People who are serving a prison term; - People whose criminal records have not been deleted yet for one of following crimes: intentionally infringing on the life, property or honor and dignity of others; mistreating or abusing grandparents, father, mother, wife, husband, children, grandchildren or people who have fostered them; enticing, forcing or harboring juvenile to violate the law or implement human trafficking. 5. Conditions for adopted children: - Children under 16 years old; - Children from 16 to 18 years can be adopted by stepmother/ stepfather/ aunt/ uncle. 6. A person can be adopted only by a single person or a couple of husband and wife. 7. Natural father, natural mother can give their child up for adoption after minimum 15 days since the child was born. 8. Adopter must be in Viet Nam within 60 days since receiving announcement from the Department of Justice on adoption. In case either the husband or wife fails to be present for objective reasons at the child handover, he/ she must authorize a spouse to attend. For legitimate reasons, a time limit for child transfer is 90 days. After that, the child adoption will be canceled. 9. The child handover will be held at the Department of Justice with presence of representatives from the Department of Justice, the adopted child, natural parents, adoptive parents or guardian or representative from children care center. 10. Before receiving the announcement on child recommendation, adopter cannot is not allowed to must not have contact with father, mother, guardian or care center of the child. 11. If the applicant rejects the recommended child without any legitimate reasons, the application will be canceled.
Legal basis

- The Civil Law in 2005;
- The Law on Child Adoption in 2010;
- Government Decree 19/2011/ND-CP dated March 21, 2011, detailing implementation of some articles of the Law on Child Adoption;
- MoJ Circular 24/2014/TT – BTP dated December 29, 2014 on issuing and guiding record, archive and use of form for child adoption;
- MoJ Circular 15/2014/TT-BTP dated May 20, 2014 on guiding the search to find alternative family abroad for disabled children, children suffering fatal diseases, children aged five and above, siblings.

Administrative procedures