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Although domestic adoption is increasing in India, a country with an estimated 25 million children who need families, intercountry adoption remains the primary hope for children with special needs to have a forever family.

Dillon International has been placing children from India since the 1980′s. Dillon’s adoption program from India had been put on hold, but we are very happy to have begun accepting families into the program again in 2013.

Children still become available for adoption in India primarily because of the extreme economic disadvantages of their birth family or the social stigma of single parenthood.

Children available for adoption reside in orphanages throughout India and have a broad range of special needs. Common needs include missing an eye or ear, hearing loss, cerebral palsy, ADHD, atrial septal defect (a repairable heart condition), cleft lip/palate, and kidney problems. Children younger than 3 typically have more serious conditions.



Cartwrightfamily-groupParents’ Ages (if married)

  • 25–55 years of age for heterosexual married couples
  • No more than 45 years between older parent and child
  • For child older than 3, composite age of parents should be less than 105, and neither parent can be over 55 years of age.


Parent’s Age (if single)

  • 30-50, case by case
  • Maximum age of 45 for a child younger than 3
  • Maximum age of 50 for child older than 3
  • Single males may not adopt a female child.

For families from India: Families who have NRI and OCI status are eligible to consider a child without special needs. Families who do not have NRI or OCI status will need to be open to children with special needs.

  • Non-Resident Indian (NRI)- One spouse needs to be a US citizen, and the other spouse needs to obtain a valid Indian passport.
  • Overseas Citizens of India (OCI)- Will need to have OCI documentation.

 Length of Marriage

  • Couples married at least 2 years for first marriage and 3 years for a second marriage

Children in Family Prior to Adoption

  • No more than 3 children


  • All 50 states

Psychological Evaluation

  • Not required

Child’s Gender

  • Families may choose the gender of their child.


  • 1 or 2 trips, 7-10 days each


  • 3 post-placement reports due at 1, 3, 6 months
  • Family reports every six months for two years


  • Application: 2-3 months
  • Home study: 2-3 months
  • USCIS and dossier: 2-3 months
  • Referral: 1-12+
  • Child’s arrival: 9-18 months
  • Total timeframe: 24-36+ months

Want to see how this compares to other countries’ requirements? Look at our country comparison chart.

Learn even more in the Adoption Guide.


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