ALERT: Ethiopia no longer permits intercountry adoption. Following an April 2017 suspension, Ethiopia announced in October 2017 that it would cease to process new cases, then passed a law formally banning intercountry adoption in January 2018. At this time, the U.S. Department of State does not know how the government of Ethiopia will process pending cases. If you are in the process of adopting from Ethiopia, please stay in close contact with your agency and monitor adoption.state.gov to stay up to date.
Ethiopia Adoption Fast Facts
- 2015 Adoptions: 335 children
- Hague Country: No
- Estimated Total Cost: $30,000 to $40,000 (see Ethiopia adoption cost breakdown)
- Profile of Children: 46% of children are between ages 1 and 4. 56% are boys (2014).
- Parent Ages: Parents must be between age 25 and 65, sometimes the Ethiopian government limits the age difference between adoptive parents and children to 40 years.
- Family Status: Ethiopia has shown a strong preference for couples that have been married for more than five years. Single women may be accepted on a case-by-case basis. Same-sex couples may not adopt. Single men are ineligible to adopt.
- Travel: One or both adopting parents must travel twice to Ethiopia.
- Timeline: 24 months or longer.
Helpful Articles from Adoptive Families Magazine
- “My Rockin’ Ethiopian Sons”: When my husband and I dreamed of raising bilingual children, we had no idea that one of their languages would be rock and roll.
- “On the Outside, Looking In”: Phil Bertelson, an award-winning filmmaker and transracial adoptee, explores issues of racism and transracial adoption in an interview.
- “Learning to Care for My African-American Daughter’s Hair”: As a white mom learns about her black child’s hair, both come of age.
- “Honoring My Ethiopian Daughters’ Heritage”: An adoptive mother finds her way, parenting two girls whose stories are distinctly different from most other African-American children they meet.
- “A Home for Helen”: A mother’s story of adopting a girl from Ethiopia.
Books Related to Ethiopia Adoption
- Ethiopia: The Bradt Travel Guide, by Philip Briggs