Musings on Immigration

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Celebrity Immigration/ Adoption Fever


As a follow up to yesterday’s post, I thought it would be interesting to see which celebrities adopted from where and what they had to do to emigrate their child to the United States. This may also help you if you are trying to decide which country to adopt from: Madonna and Malawi: See yesterday’s post. The country of Malawi will not finalize an adoption unless you have been evaluated by a social worker there for two years. The US will not grant a visa to your adopted Malawian child unless you are willing to live in Malawi for two years or like Madonna, you can afford to fly the social worker to your place of residence multiple times over an 18 month period.

Angelina Jolie, Julie Andrews and Jim Caviezel have all adopted from Vietnam: The United States has granted over 1500 immigrant visas to adopted Vietnamese children over the past two years. However; due to the high incidence of fraud, adopting from Vietnam can be a complicated process. Prospective adoptive parents submit their paperwork to a central body in Vietnam and are then matched with an orphan child. The US has currently suspended all Vietnamese adoptions because it’s working on a new agreement with the country of Vietnam.

Angelina Jolie and Cambodia: Due to fraud, irregularities, and allegations of child-buying in the Cambodia; it is almost impossible to get a visa for an orphan adopted from Cambodia. Adoptive parents might want to consider Thailand as an alternative to Vietnam or Cambodia. Thailand does not have the same fraud problems and wait times are less- 8-12 months for an infant.

Angelina Jolie and Ethiopia: Ethiopia has become an increasingly popular option for adoptive parents. The country itself does not impose any residency requirements- meaning you won’t have to live in Ethiopia if you want to adopt from there. There are no minimum or maximum age limits for adoptive parents. The child herself must have been relinquished or abandoned under Ethiopian law and must have been in an orphanage for at least 3 months. The adoption and immigration process can be completed in as little as 6 months.

Mia Farrow and South Korea: Mia Farrow adopted her daughter, Soon Yi Previn, from South Korea. It seemed like a good idea at the time and it still is a good idea for most people. South Korea has relaxed age limits for adoptive parents and no residency requirements. However; wait times for healthy infants can be as long as three years. Over a thousand South Korean orphans were granted immigrant visas to the United States last year.

Meg Ryan and China: China has recently instituted stricter guidelines for its adoptive parents. Adoptive parents now for example, cannot be over weight, blind in one or both eyes, suffer from hearing loss etc. Luckily for Meg Ryan, she does not suffer from any of these maladies. The process itself is well stream lined but very drawn out with many adoptions taking about 3 years to conclude.

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