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Source: BUS Sachsen-Anhalt (Linie6PLus)

Adopt a foreign child


If you want to adopt a child, contact an adoption agency. In Germany, adoptions may only be arranged by certain agencies, the Adoptions-Vermittlungsstellen (in short: Adoptionsstelle).

The adoption agency is responsible for the adoption of related children, stepchildren and foreign children.

An adoption is a process and you will be accompanied by the adoption agency during the whole time. Even after the adoption process is complete, you have a legal right to counseling and support.

The Adoption Center will check whether you are suitable to adopt a child. To do this, you will take part in a seminar, submit documents and have discussions with the adoption center team. In addition, home visits take place. The focus is on the well-being of the child and the protection of his or her rights and needs.

If you qualify as an adoptive parent, you will be approved as a suitable adoption applicant. Then, the adoption agency may place a child.

Who is selected for which child is determined by the adoption center team. Placement occurs when the development of a positive parent-child relationship can be expected.

  • You must have unlimited legal capacity.
  • You must be at least 25 years old.
  • You have a secure income and/or sufficient financial security.
  • Your professional circumstances must allow sufficient time to raise your children.
  • You must be in good health. A certificate from your family doctor is sufficient. You can obtain a leaflet to present to the doctor from the adoption office.
  • You must be free of criminal convictions. An extended certificate of good conduct is required (extract from the Federal Central Register). You can obtain a certificate to present to the city office from the adoption office.
  • You must be willing to respect the child's religion or the desire for religious upbringing of the birth parents.

For couples:

  • You should live in the same household for at least 4 years.
  • In parallel, you must not pursue medical procedures to overcome your own childlessness.

If they are married also applies:

  • You can adopt only jointly.
  • One of you must be at least 25 years old. The younger one must be at least 21 years old.

Joint adoption is given priority. For single people, adoption is only considered if:

  • a related child is being adopted.
  • A significant relationship already exists with the child.
  • the adoption preserves the familiar living environment.
  • it is ensured that the child will grow up in stable social circumstances.

Youth Welfare Office

During the whole time you will be accompanied by the adoption center. They will advise and support you. An adoption proceeds in these steps:

Suitability test

You fill out an application form. In addition, you create a so-called life report. In this document, they describe their previous life stages, family relationships and other emotional ties.

In order to check your motivation and readiness, the adoption center would like to get to know you. At the same time, the adoption center advises you extensively on the subject. For this purpose, there are seminars, talks and home visits.


If you are selected as adoptive parents for a child, the placement process begins.

First, you will receive all the information about the adopted child and can get to know him or her. At this stage, you as potential adoptive parents can decide whether or not to adopt the child.

Foster care

The adopted child now lives with you. During this period, a good relationship should grow. Normally, the Youth Welfare Office is the child's guardian during this time, which means that you can make decisions for the child in all matters of daily life. But decisions that go beyond this must be agreed with the Youth Welfare Office.


After the adoption care period, you can file an application for adoption. You can only file the application with the help of a notary public. The family court examines the application and validly pronounces the adoption in the resolution procedure.

Once the adoption proceedings before the family court have been completed, the adoption is automatically recorded in the register of births. The adoption decision gives the child the legal status of a natural child. Legal relations with the natural family cease.

You have no legal right to the placement of a child.

§ Section 9 (1) or (2) AdVermiG

Senator for Social Affairs, Youth, Integration and Sport, Bremen.

The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

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