Who Can Adopt?
Under Jamaican law any person 25 years and older can adopt a child/children. However, the law allows persons who are 18 years old to adopt younger relatives.
Who Can Be Adopted?
Only children between the ages of six weeks and 18 years old are eligible for adoption in Jamaica.
Beginning the Process
You must first complete a Pre-Adoption form, which is provided by the Child Development Agency (CDA).
If you are deemed suitable, then you will be contacted by the CDA and given an adoption application form and a medical form to be completed.
You will also be given a listing of required documentation to be provided to the CDA. The listing typically includes your birth certificate, marriage certificate, character references and letters of responsibility (which transfer guardianship of your adopted child to another adult/adults in the event of your death).
If your documents are satisfactory, a four-week Home Study Assessment, involving home visits, interviews and counselling sessions, is done.
If your assessment is positive, you will be assisted in finding children available for adoption.
Adopting your Child/Children
After being paired with a child/children, AB social workers will carry out in-home supervision for a minimum of three months.
If the social workers are satisfied with your relationship with the child/children, you will be instructed to make an application to the Family Court for a Licence/Adoption Order hearing.
On the day of the hearing, you will, under the guidance your case worker, address a Family Court judge, giving arguments in support of your adoption of your prospective child/children.
At the end of the address, the judge will grant or deny the Licence/Adoption Order. If granted, you may then assume full guardianship of the adopted child/children.
For further enquiries please contact:
Child Development Agency
48 Duke Street
Tel: (876) 948-0243