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Monday 27th of March 2017

News Items

10/17/2010 - USCIS fees will increase on many forms.

Effective November 23, 2010, USCIS fees for many forms will increase.  This will include an increase in the:

 

  • I-600 Orphan Petition and I-800 Hague Convention Petition to $720.
  • N-600/N-600K Applications for a Certificate of Citizenship (COC)  to $550 for a child by adoption ($600 for a biological child.)
If your child does not have a COC to prove his or her citizenship, there is no better time than now, before the increase, to do so.  Read the article, Why Your Foreign-Born Adopted Child Should Have Proof of U.S. Citizenship, How to Get This Proof and Related Issues written by C.J. Lyford (Attorney At Law practicing in the areas of Adoption, Immigration, Citizenship, and Visa law) from lyfordlaw.com

A message from the presidents of FCC New England, Greater New York,
Southern California and Northern California:

We have received a reply to our letter of May 1, 2007 from the CCAA in Beijing. You may read our preface to that letter here. You may view the original letter in Mandarin here. We had the letter translated twice because we wanted to have the clearest possible understanding of what it said. While you may note that each seems different in some ways, we have been told that both of these translations are correct in content and tone. We have provided both translation#1 and translation#2.

Chinese Adoption Conference

Chinese Children Adoption International (CCAI) will host a Red Thread Celebration – A China Adopteen Conference, the first conference to focus on the needs of teenage Chinese adoptees, from July 25 to 27, 2008, in Centennial, Colorado. Through keynote speakers, adult adoptee panel discussions, Xpress Yourself (www.xpressyourself.org) creative groups, Dragon Boat Festival, Chinese dance and calligraphy exercises, team building activities, and professional seminars on topics like identity and adoption, conference participants will find connection, support, inspiration, and a lot of fun. For more detailed information, please visit www.chinaadopteen.org. Thank you for spreading the word! For any questions, please feel free to email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 303-850-9998.

FCC Chapters send formal response to new CCAA regulations

The New England, Northern California, New York, and Southern California have sent a formal response to the draft regulations issued by CCAA in December of 2006. Click Here to read the response and click on this link to read their letter to FCC members

China Adds Restrictions on Prospective Families

CCAA has announced additional limits on prospective families. Click here for updated additional info. Click here for the draft text of regulations released to adoption agencies.

Foreigner Opens Orphanage in China

An amazing woman, Amanda de Lange, has opened an orphanage in China. Read her story and learn how you can help the children in her care here.

Certificate of Citizenship Fee Increases

The USCIS has recently announced that filing fees for various petitions and applications will be increased as of April 30, 2004. The fee for the I-600A/I-600 Orphan Petition will be increased from $460 to $525. The fee for the N-600/N-600K Application for Certificate of Citizenship (on behalf of an adopted child) will be increased from $145 to $200. (The fee for an application on behalf of a biological child will be increased to $245.) See: http://uscis.gov/graphics/publicaffairs/newsrels/FeesRelease.pdf http://uscis.gov/graphics/publicaffairs/newsrels/USCISFeeStructure.pdf

Automatic Citizenship Certificates

As of January 17 the USCIS is automatically sending adoptive parents of IR3 children free Certificates of Citizenship. Adoptions that occurred prior to that date will not be sent one. i.e. it's not retroactive. Rather,a parent will have to file the N600 and pay the filing fee. This does NOT apply to children entering on an IR4 visa.

Further changes about Certificates of Citizenship

In a press notice dated November 20, 2003, the USCIS announced that under its "CCA Program," Certificates of Citizenship will be issued to children who enter the U.S. on IR3 visas within 45 days of entry, free of charge. The backlog of applications that have been submitted for Certificates will also be reduced. Certificates will not be provided for children who enter on IR4 visas. In addition, from what is written it does not appear that Certificates for children already in the U.S., will be provided under this program. Hopefully this will be clarified shortly. You can read the USCIS announcement at http://uscis.gov/graphics/publicaffairs/newsrels/CCA_Release.pdf Stay tuned for updates.

NEW FORM, N-600, TO APPLY FOR A CERTIFICATE OF CITIZENSHIP

The form N-643 has been eliminated by the INS (now BCIS.) Now you should use the revised N-600 to apply for a Certificate of Citizenship. You can download the revised Form N-600 and its instructions at: http://www.immigration.gov/graphics/formsfee/forms/n-600.htm or order it by phone at 1800-870-3676. See also the October 1, 2003, Federal Register Notice, CIS: Introduction of revised N-600 and N-600K, 68 FR 56643, effective October 31, 2003, at: http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/14mar20010800/edocket.access.gpo.gov/2003/03-24803.htm Make sure that the N-600 contains a revision date in the lower corner of 11/15/02 or later. The cost for a Certificate on behalf of an adopted child is $145.

New Chinese Visa Requirements

The Chinese Embassy and Consulates are firmly enforcing the regulation that any child born in China must submit their Chinese Passport along with their U.S. Passport when applying for their first visa for China. The Chinese passport has the corner clipped to indicate that it is invalid and then is returned with the rest of the documents. This only applies the first time you are applying for a visa for China for your child.

U.S. Census Issues Report on Adoption

The Census department has issued a report on information about adopted children collected during the 2000 Census. The report shows that 2.5 percent of all children in the U.S. are adopted. Of these almost 13% are foreign born, with China being the second most popular country of origin behind Korea.

CCAA Issues Revised Regulations

CCAA has issued a number of new regulations recently, the master listing of regulations is at http://www.china-ccaa.org/zcfg/zcfg_index_en.jsp. Of particular interest to families in the adoption process are the revised general regulations for the China adoption process. These supercede the regulations issued in 2001 although there are not major changes from the previous regulations. These regulations are now in force. In addition, CCAA has issued regulations describing the basic criteria for adoption agencies. (3/23/03)

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome

The latest information on this serious disease first seen in Guangdong Province is on our SARS page. (3/23/03)

Bill Moyers PBS Show: Becoming American: The Chinese Experience

A 3-part series "BECOMING AMERICAN: The Chinese Experience" will air on PBS stations across the country on the evenings of March 25 - March 27. Part One "Gold Mountain Dreams" looks at the earliest 19th century arrivals and the role of the Chinese in the settling and building of the American West. Part Two "Between Two Worlds" examines the impact of the 1882 Exclusion Act and the development of 20th century Chinese American families and identity. Part Three, "No Turning Back" views Chinese Americans from WWII, through the Civil Rights Movement and the 1965 Immigration Reform Act to the present. The PBS series will be accompanied by numerous public programs and is intended to lead to dialogue in communities and schools across the country. FCC is one of many Asian American organizations that will be part of the effort to get the word out and inform colleagues and friends of the issues raised by the program. Individual FCC chapters are invited to create activities or events around the series or the half-hour highlights reel that will be available in mid-February. There are also viewer guides and teacher guides to deepen involvement in schools. FCC families, along with other Asian Americans, are invited to add their stories of becoming Americans in the online database. To do so, and to learn more about the series and related events, view the web site "www.becomingamerican.org" or www.fccny.org. 2/7/03

FCC Family to Appear on Today Show

The Today Show (NBC) will air a four-part series on adoption from Feb. 24-27. (This is the series that was originally scheduled for November 2002.) The opening segment on Monday, Feb. 24, will be about Ying Ying Fry, the nine-year old author of the book Kids Like Me in China. The book, about her experience of returning to visit the Changsha orphanage, was excerpted in the Winter 2001 FCCNY Newsletter. There will be a four-minute taped segment, including some orphanage footage, and around four minutes live. 2/7/03

CCAA Lifts Formal Quota for Couples

A recently posted item on the CCAA website announces that the formal quota for couples adopting from China has been lifted. However, agencies are strongly encouraged by CCAA not to greatly increase the number of applications. The quota for single parents remains but has been raised from the current 5% to 8%. An age limit for single parents of 50 is also established. Applications for special needs children and children over 6 will receive special rapid processing. In addition, CCAA is reducing their fees for these applications. Finally, agencies are given firm dates to submit post-placement reports for all children adopted in 2002. 1/3/03

FCC Receives Congressional Award !

Families with Children from China has received a congressional award! Representative Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) selected FCC to receive one of this year's Angels in Adoption awards from the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. This is terrific recognition for all the FCC chapters in the US. Go to the CCAI website for an informative article about their recent trip to China: http://www.ccainstitute.org/ Click here to seen an image of the award certificate presented on Sept 24, 2002.

FCC National Newsletter Announced

FCCNY, FCCNE, and FCC-N.Calif. have teamed up to produce a national newsletter, the FCC National News. The first issue will be out this winter and available to all FCCs. This concise, triannual publication will feature articles and photos of the "big picture" of China adoption. For chapters that already have thriving newsletters, FCC National News can be an additional benefit of membership. For the many chapters that do not produce a regular newsletter, the National News can provide a professionally produced newsletter at minimal cost. Details are still being worked out. For more information, contact Amy Klatzkin, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. This newsletter will only be distributed through participating chapters and will not be available for individual subscriptions at this time. Contact your local chapter and encourage them to contact Amy Klatzkin at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for the latest information.

Passport fees have gone up

Fees for U.S. passport services have gone up, effective August 19, 2002. Fee for first-time adult passport issuance increases from $60 to $80. Fee for minors under 16 increases from $40 to $70. Adult passport renewal fee increases from $40 to $55. Expedited service increases from $35 to $60.

CCAA Issues New Regulations

CCAA has issued new regulations setting explicit quotas on the number of applications allowed, click here for the full article.

FCC and the Terrorist Attack of Sept 11, 2001

While we have all been affected by these events, it appears at this writing that only one China family has lost a parent in the attacks. Jeff Mladenik, 43, of Hinsdale, Ill. was aboard American Airlines Flt. 11 that was crashed into the World Trade Tower. The family has requested that memorial donations be sent to the Altrusa Foundation for helping children in the orphanages in China. As of late September, FCC NY is not aware of any members lost in the attacks although certainly some lost friends and relatives. The chapter has made a donation to the Childrens Aid Society, click here to read their full statement. No China family members are known to be among the victims of the attack on the Pentagon, or were on the plane that crashed in PA.

CCAA Issues New Regulations

The China Center for Adoption Affairs has posted new regulations on their website (http://www.china-ccaa.org/ccae-zcwt.htm). These are dated June 18, 2001 and go into effect on August 1, 2001. Some are clarifications of known limits however there are new regulations that codify limits that have not been defined before. See the page ccaa8_01.htm for complete details and analysis. The main items are explicit upper age limits (55), limits on the number of other children in a family (5), and explicit rules on categories for expidited processing including a category for families with Chinese parent(s). If previous experience is a guide, the new rules apply to dossiers received at CCAA after August 1, 2001.

 

Adoption Tax Credit Law passes Congress

The Hope for Children Act has passed the House and Senate and is currently (5/26/01) in conference committee. This law will make the adoption tax credit permanent and will raise the limits on the deductions and income limits. You may wish to contact your congresspersons to make sure that they know of your opinion on this legislation, see our Legislation page for links to contact information.This has now been passed and signed into law.

 

Child Citizenship Law is now in effect

The Child Citizenship Law went intoeffect on Feb 27, 2001. The basic provisions are that all children under the age of 18 who were adopted abroad by US parents are now automatically US citizens. The INS has posted information on how the law will be implemented. The famous N-643 form is now used to apply for a Certificate of Citizenship at a cost of $125. An INS fact sheet gives all of the available details about the application process. The INS is in the process of streamlining the process so these rules will be superceded in the long term.

 

China Center for Adoption Affairs Issues Revised Regulations for Dossiers.

Posted: 2/10/01

Don't Panic!, check with your agency, be patient.

The China Center for Adoption Affairs has issued new regulations concerning details and specifications of the documents submitted as part of the dossier. The document is dated December 4, 2000, but the English translation was posted on the CCAA website about Jan 5, 2001. These changes officially go into effect on February 1, 2001. The English translation of the complete text of the regulations is on the CCAA website at: http://www.china-ccaa.org/zxwje.htm.

There may be some difficulties during the transition to the new regulations. Agencies will be checking with CCAA to determine how (if at all) dossiers already in China will be affected. Dossiers that have not yet gone to CCAA may have to be amended in some circumstances. There are a number of questions that arise from these new regulations and agencies will be contacting CCAA for clarifications and decisions. In some cases answers may not be immediately avaliable from CCAA so please be patient with your agency. I am sure they want to know the answers at least as badly as you do.

These regulations go into considerable detail about the information that should be included in the dossier and you may be sure that this document is being read very closely by the people running China adoption programs. It might be wise to check to be sure that your agency is aware of these changes the next time you are in contact with them. This is especially important if your dossier is in the preparation stage or has recently been sent to CCAA. You may need to file amendments or revised documents to prevent delays in processing your dossier. Parents who already have a referral but have not traveled are not expected to be affected at all.

These regulations go into much detail about the forms, documents, and information needed in all parts of the dossier. Famlies who are in the process of preparing their dossers should read the regulations to be sure that they are in compliance with the new regulations. These are also very useful in that they explicitly state the items that are to be addressed in the home study. This will remove the mystery from the home study process, here is clearly stated what China wants to know about the prospective adoptive parents.

There are significant changes in certain areas:

Single parents: The most significant change is in the area of single parents. Adoption by single parents is specifically allowed and will continue. However, it is clear from these regulations that CCAA is firmly attempting to prevent adoption by homosexual persons, which is specifically forbidden by the China Adoption Law. Several sections relate to the concern of CCAA about this issue, I have highlighted the most relevant sections in italic text. Item B 3 details the Certificate of Marital Status, section (2) states: "Single adopters shall submit documents attesting to single status. The unmarried shall submit statement to show that they are unmarried and they are not homosexuals. The divorced shall submit their divorce decree of their previous marriage. The bereft spouse shall submit certificate of the death spouse." Here is the text from item B 8 (k) and refers to things that must be addressed in in the home study. "The situation of persons who live together or of cohabitants who are not members of the family. The adoption applicants (husband and wife or singles) who have cohabitants who are not members of the family shall state the relationship between them and the reasons for cohabitation. Single adoption applicants living together with the cohabitant of the same sex shall submit statement that both of them are not homosexuals and the social worker preparing the home study report shall make reasonable, true and responsible assessment; single adoption applicants living together with friends of opposite sex shall truly reflect the attitude of the heterosexual cohabitant friends towards their adoption from China and their relationship between the cohabitant friends of opposite sex." In addition, section B 8 (d) of the home study section is also somewhat relevant: "Marital status. A couple who adopt in concert shall give their views on each other, their attitude toward marriage, method for the solution to marriage issue and the extent of satisfaction with their marriage; the single adopters shall give appraisal of singleness, whether they will get married in the future, and attitude they will adopt toward their adopted children after marriage in the future; the divorced shall state the causes and times for ending the relationship of previous marriage or marriages."

Social Workers: Another change of significance is that CCAA has stated that they will no longer accept home studies prepared by independent social workers. The English text of the translation is: " The home study report must be written by the social workers engaged by the adoption organizations which have established relations of cooperation with the China Center of Adoption Affairs. If the adoption organization has no branch (or office) in the place where the adoption applicant reside or even if there is branch (office) but no social worker is available, they can entrust the social worker engaged by the other adoption organizations to make the home study report for the adoption applicants. The entrusted adoption organization must be one of non-profit organizations." My personal and very unofficial interpretation of this text is that social workers preparing home studies must be employed by the agency submitting the dosser, or by other agencies with a China adoption program. If your homestudy was not prepared by a social worker employed by your agency or another agency, please check with your adoption agency to see what if anything needs to be done. No statement is given as to what will happen with a home study prepared by an independent social worker for a dossier already in China, please check with your agency about this situation.

Special Needs Adoptions: CCAA will restrict adoptions of children with special medical needs to a small group of agencies with existing China adoption programs and programs to deal with the additional needs of these children and their new families. At this time we are aware of five agencies involved in this program and they are highlighted in our list of China adoption agencies.

Maximum Age: There have been a number of statements on the internet concerning a new maximum age limit for adoptive parents. There is no mention in the revised regulations of a maximum age for adoptive parents. If CCAA has changed their policy, it has not stated so on their website.

S.1485 Adopted Orphans Citizenship Act Passed.

The Bill was signed into law on October 30, 2000 and goes into effect on February 27, 2001. There are three criteria to be met, they are that the child must be: (1) under 18 years old, (2) admitted to the US as lawful permanent residents, and (3) in the legal and physical custody of at least one parent who is a US citizen. For all children meeting these standards, US citizenship is automatic on the date the bill goes into effect.

CHINA SIGNS HAGUE CONVENTION

On the afternoon of November 30, 2000, Ambassador Hua Li Ming of the People's Republic of China signed The Hague Convention on Protection of Children in Respect of Intercountry Adoption in the Peace Palace at the Hague.

Reading from the Preamble of the Convention, the Ambassador expressed China's support of the treaty and indicated that China is moving towards ratification.

Mr. Hans van Loon, Secretary General of the Hague, responded, "When the drafting of the Hague Convention began more than 10 years ago, and when the Treaty was signed in 1993, it was not imagined that China would become a party to The Hague Convention. This is a very momentous day."

The signing took place during the meeting of the Special Commission on the Practical Operation of the 1993 Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention attended by more than 50 countries.

US Adoptions for Fiscal Year 2000 top 5000!

The US State Department released its figures on international adoptions in fiscal year 2000. Adoptions from China were significantly up from 1999 with a total this year of 5053! This brings the total number of adoptions from China since 1985 to 23,903. See the Statistics page for additional information.


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