The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has announced changes to the way in which “orphan” or “non-Hague” adoption applications are submitted and processed. The new process centralizes all I-600A and I-600 applications into one location at the National Benefits Center (NBC) in Missouri. Joint Council, as a member of the Hague Stakeholders Work Group, has advocated for this type of transition for a number of years and fully supports the centralization of the non-Hague adoption process.
The changes to filing a petition for the adoption of a child born in a foreign country not only centralizes all aspects into one location at the NBC but most importantly will streamline the process. The NBC is currently responsible for the processing of all Hague adoption petitions and if history is a guide, the changes to the non-Hague adoption process may have a few bumps in the road, but will ultimately make the process more transparent, consistent and timely.
USCIS published an announcement regarding the new way to file an I-600A or I-600 (“orphan” or “non-Hauge”) application. The full announcement is available by clicking here.
As part of the NBC’s continuing outreach to and partnership with our community, webinars for Adoption Service Providers will be conducted with a goal of ensuring that prospective adoptive families can be served at the highest level and with the most accurate information available.
Joint Council extends its appreciation to the leadership and staff at the National Benefits Center for this much needed improvement.