Adoption

Children adopted overseas by Australian citizens under full Hague Convention Intercountry Adoption arrangements or a bilateral arrangement may apply to be registered as Australian citizens.

The eligibility requirements are:

  • the adoption of the person must have been finalised outside Australia in accordance with the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption or a bilateral arrangement between Australia and another country prescribed in Schedule 1 of the Family Law (Bilateral Arrangements-Intercountry Adoption) Regulations 1998
  • at least one of the adoptive parents must be an Australian citizen
  • the legal relationship between the applicant and the birth parents must have been terminated
  • an adoption compliance certificate must have been issued
  • the adoption must be recognised by the Commonwealth and/or States or Territories
  • if the person is aged 18 years or over, the person must be of good character at the time of the decision on the application.

Although an applicant may be aged 18 years or over, the applicant's adoption must have been agreed to by the adoption authorities of Australia and the other country before the person turns 18.

If the applicant's Australian citizen parent was an Australian citizen by adoption or descent, the applicant's responsible parent must have resided in Australia for a period of two years before the application is made.

An adoption compliance certificate is evidence that a full adoption has occurred under the Hague Convention or a bilateral arrangement and the legal relationship between the adopted child and the birth parents has been severed.