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Who may be adopted

Any Filipino child below fifteen (15) years of age who has been voluntarily or involuntarily committed to the Department as dependent, abandoned or neglected may be the subject of inter-country adoption except when:

  1. The child is part of a sibling group, where one or more is below 15 years old;
  2. If the application for adoption of a child was filed before the child reached the age of 15;
  3. Special Home Finding was initiated before the child’s 15th birthday; and
  4. Other situations where the intent to adopt was manifested before the child reached 15.


In case of relative adoption, a child within the 4th degree of consanguinity or affinity shall be subject to inter-country adoption.

Children subject for relative inter-country adoption shall be officially endorsed by the DSWD Field Office which has jurisdiction over the child and such endorsement shall serve as the child’s clearance for inter-country adoption.

A Special Needs child includes:

  1. Older children, usually boys 73 months old and above;
  2. Sibling group of 3 or more,
  3. Children with minor medical conditions (cleft lip, half or total blindness, hearing impaired)
  4. Children with minor developmental delays (language, speech, motor skills, etc.)



A child who has been committed to the Department and who may be available for inter-country adoption shall be endorsed by the Department to the Board.  The endorsement shall contain a certification by the Department that all possibilities for adoption of the child in the Philippines have been exhausted and that inter-country adoption is in the best interests of the child.  The Inter-Country Adoption Clearance shall be issued by the DSWD together with the Child Study Report (CSR) and other Supporting Documents (SDs) shall be endorsed to the Board.

The following documents pertaining to the child shall be attached to the endorsement:

  1. Certification Declaring a Child Legally Available for Adoption (CDCLAA) – a written certification issued by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) that a child is legally available for adoption after the fact of abandonment or neglect has been proven through the submission of pertinent documents or one who was voluntarily committed by his/her birthparent/s or legal guardian as a pre-requisite for adoption proceedings.
  1. Child Study and Updated Report prepared at the time of matching shall include information about the child’s identity, upbringing, ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds, social environment, family history, medical history and special needs;
  1. Security Paper (SECPA) of the Birth or Foundling Certificate;
  1. Notarized Deed of Voluntary Commitment executed after the birth of the child;
  1. Certified True Copy of the Death Certificate of child’s birthparent/s, if applicable;
  1. Medical evaluation or history, including that of the child’s biological parents, if available, and updated medical abstract;
  1. Psychological evaluation report, as may be deemed necessary;
  1. Child’s own written consent to adoption, if he/she is ten (10) years or older, witnessed by a social worker of the Child Caring/Placing Agency and after proper counseling;
  1. Most recent whole body size picture of the child. If applicable, any physical impairment of the child should be visible in the picture.