Child Adoption in Australia

Hello Everyone

Has anyone here adopted a child from overseas? If yes, would be great if anyone can share their experience from government authorities in Australia and Overseas? What was the time frame? How many visits did you have to make overseas? What was the total cost ?

We ( Me and my wife) have always wanted to adopt a child and after several years of thinking decided to have our own.. We have a baby boy who is now 3 months old but the wish to adopt a child has remained. I have read its usually a 2- 3 year process and wish start the process asap as we do not want a huge age gap between two.

Please share any experiences you may have. Thanks in advance.


  • Why adopt from overseas? There are thousands of children in Australia who can't live with their parents and bounce from foster home to foster home. If you want a child permanently, adopt from foster care. The children may be less messed up than those overseas anyway, as we don't put children in institutions / orphanages like other countries.
    You also get loads of training for dealing with kids with trauma (which kids from overseas adoption will have too), plus an allowance for the kids' needs instead of it costing you thousands of dollars to do. Some states will continue the allowance after you finalise the adoption too (not just while a foster carer).

    • From my understanding, adoptions within Australia are just not that simple.

      I’ve had a lot of friends, or friends of friends attempt this and it appears the laws in Aus are such that they will always favour reuniting the child with their biological parents - even if it means bouncing from foster home to foster home.

      Only about 40 kids per year actually become adopted in Australia.

      • When you apply to foster care you can choose different types. Two types are concurrent care and permanent care.

        Concurrent care is what you are thinking of - they are exploring reunion with parents while you also say that if it gets determined that they can't return to their parents you will keep them forever. This is best for the child because then they only have to change homes once. But hard for the foster parents as you risk losing them.

        Permanent care is when the courts have decided that the child will NEVER return to their parents. When you sign up to have a kid under permanent care, they will not return to their parents and you will have them forever (if adopted or you get a enduring parental care order) or until they turn 18.

        • Perm care (18 orders) is where the court orders that children will be wards of the state until they turn 18. That does not mean they will remain with the same foster carer until they turn 18. 'Family' can come out of the word work years later and the department will happily break up long term placements to facilitate this.

          My advise is if you go down this path push for special guardianship orders (SGO) as soon as they hit 2 years with you, if the department will not do it for you then lawyer up and get it done yourself.

          There is a need for more foster carers but it is a flawed system, keep this in mind and do not go into it thinking of a way to adopt but to help kids in need as the kids are the ones who pay the real price. It may become long term but keep on mind there are no garunteeing this will be the case.

          Other states have better legislation in this area however WA is miles behind everywhere else.

      • Thats correct, I have been informed the same. I had a friend who had fostered more than 10 children over a period of 3 years and could not adopt any of them as they were reunited with extended family.. The emotional toll it takes on them to let go is something I (We) cant handle

        • Yes but you don't have to sign up to emergency care / short term care / concurrency care which is when they may go back - if you don't want a kid to go back you sign up to permanent care. It is all in your control. Your friend signed up as a foster carer not as a potential adopter so this is what they signed up for.

    • Actually we dont mind if its from Australia or Overseas.. I have been informed that we first need to foster a child here for few days and depending on their biological parents and their extended family .. if they allow us and have no interest in taking care of the baby we have an option to adopt.

      This is something we dont wish to do .. we do not want to get attached to the baby, foster for few days and only to be taken away later.( this may be selfish but we just need some stability with this )

      • Then don't sign up to concurrent care - sign up to permanent care. This does mean children are generally aged 2 or older.

    • Kids overseas would kill to be bouncing around Australian foster homes. Surely adopting from overseas does more good for the world than adopting domestically.

      • We should deal with problems at home before looking elsewhere. Not to mention some countries make overseas adoption of their children a business that really does no good to the children involved.

      • Adopting and fostering are not the same thing. You aren't adopted into a foster home.

        When you are adopted you become a permanent family member and your parents provide for you in every way, shape and form.

        My knowledge of fostering is limited but my understanding is that when you foster a child, the government pays you an allowance to care for the child.

  • Did you decide to post on here to find out where you can get a cheap kid?

  • There is a government webpage outlining overseas adoption, they have info nights throughout the year. They have FAQ sheets with cost estimates and wait times. I am on my phone and lazy to find it but information is pretty easy to find!

    Numbers are very low each year, wait times are long, conditions for adopting overseas can be complex (finance, age, marriage etc) and the price can be expensive sometimes including a couple of trips overseas.

    Lots more I can say on the subject, and may do so when in front of a computer.

  • Kudos mate! It is a noble deed if someone can do, reminds me the film LION which was based on a true story.

    • +1 on this comment! Should be getting more positive vibes like this- congratulations on making this decision! Though I can’t help with any advice, I want to say what a great thing you doing and the best of luck😇

    • Thanks .. Saw the movie last night on Netflix.. what an amazing movie :)

  • I have a couple of rug-rats you can have for free!

  • I know a couple that applied for a foster child here in Sydney. They kind of put it in the back of their mind, but five years later they got a call that a 9 month old was available.

  • I think the idea to adopt is a great one. Personally I think it's possible to care for a love a child that isn't your own and that there's such a great need for it in the world.

    I'm not sure if you're an anglo family but one thing to be acutely aware of when adopting from overseas is to be aware of the impact you could have on a child culturally. There are lots of incidents of white people adopting from China, India and Africa etc and not understanding what it's like to be from those cultures and dealing with discrimination and other cultural issues. You only have to look on Youtube to see countless families kind of exploiting children they've adopted from overseas for their own gain. I'm not telling you to not adopt from other countries, I'm just saying to be really respectful and mindful of where the child comes from and the issues they could face that's all, because what you want to do is really great and a huge selfless act.

  • I'm up for adoption but you have to also adopt my twin.

    • Im not surprised because you do talk and think like a 2 year old.. i hope your twin is better.

      P.S I would not mind helping you both !