Looking to Adopt a child? Process of Adopting a child in India
Team SoOLEGAL 24 Jul 2023

Looking to Adopt a child? Process of Adopting a child in India

Adoption is a legal process by which an individual or a couple becomes the legal parent(s) of a child who is not biologically their own. In India, adoption is governed by various laws and guidelines to ensure the welfare and protection of the child.

In India, child adoption is regulated by the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act of 2015, overseen by the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA), a body under the Ministry of Women and Child Development. CARA manages the national adoption database and accredits and supervises adoption agencies. Prospective parents must adhere to a multi-step process involving counseling, home study, and legal procedures to ensure the adoption is in the child's best interest. Understanding and complying with all regulations and requirements are crucial for a successful and ethical adoption journey.

While the concept of child adoption has a historical presence in India, it is gaining popularity in modern times. In the past, adoption was met with disapproval in Indian culture, but now it is openly discussed and accepted. Understanding the process of adopting a child in India is essential for those considering this option. The decision to adopt can arise from various reasons, such as infertility or a desire to provide a better life for an orphaned child.


What are the laws governing adoption in India?

Child adoption in India is primarily regulated by the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 (JJ Act), which replaced the previous 2000 Act. The JJ Act focuses on the care, protection, and rehabilitation of children in need. For Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, and Sikhs, the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act (HAMA) of 1956 applies, granting the adopted child the same status as a natural-born child, including inheritance rights. Adoption under HAMA is irreversible. On the other hand, for Muslims, Parsis, Christians, and Jews, the Guardian and Wards Act of 1890 governs adoption, establishing a guardian-ward relationship, but not granting the child full status within the family. 

Who can adopt a child in India?

Under the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956 a male and female Hindu can adopt a child if both are not of minor age and of unsound mind provided they take consent from their spouse living at that time.

Section-57 of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015, provides the eligibility criteria of Prospective Adoptive Parents (PAP’s). Section-57 states that PAP’s should be:

(1)   The prospective adoptive parents shall be physically fit, financially sound, mentally alert and highly motivated to adopt a child for providing a good upbringing to him.

(2)   In case of a couple, the consent of both the spouses for the adoption shall be required.

(3)   A single or divorced person can also adopt, subject to fulfillment of the criteria and in accordance with the provisions of adoption regulations framed by the Authority.

(4)   A single male is not eligible to adopt a girl child.

(5)   Any other criteria that may be specified in the adoption regulations framed by the Authority.


How to adopt a child?

The adoption process in India is primarily governed by CARA's guidelines, comprising legal and social procedures to safeguard the child's best interests.

1.     The initial step involves registering with a recognized adoption agency or orphanage, submitting essential documents.

2.     Prospective parents then undergo a home study, assessing their readiness for adoption.

3.     Counseling sessions follow, offering insights into adoption's challenges and rewards and addressing the child's emotional needs.

4.     Upon successful screening, an acceptance letter is issued by the adoption agency.

5.     Legal procedures commence to transfer custody, obtaining a court order, birth certificate, and adoption deed.

6.     During a 6 to 12-month foster care period, the child resides with the prospective parents, while the agency offers support.

7.     The court reviews a report from the agency before granting the adoption order, leading to the issuance of a new birth certificate.

8.     Post-adoption, the agency conducts follow-up visits to ensure the child's well-being and support the adoptive parents.

After Post-adoption there are certain other procedures that are also needed to be done. It is always advised to engage a professional in this regard. For any assistance for the same, you can contact us at +91 9810929455 or mail us at 

Can Parents with children adopt a child?

In India, the adoption process prioritizes the child's best interests above all else. As long as prospective adoptive parents can offer a nurturing and stable environment and fulfill the legal obligations of adoption, they are eligible to adopt. The adoption procedure remains comparable for both parents with and without biological children. 


In case there are any queries pertaining to Adoption, please call us at +91 9810929455 or mail us at

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  9 Aug 2023 5:45pm
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