Selection of the country of adoption and the certified body
The adoptive parent must first ensure that he or she meets Québec’s adoption criteria and choose the country he or she wishes to adopt a child from, taking into consideration the country of origin’s requirements (e.g., minimum age, civil or marital status, family situation). It is also during this step that the adoptive parent chooses the certified body that will carry out the adoption procedures.
To obtain information on conditions in the countries of origin, adoptive parents are urged to consult the certified bodies on the list provided by the Secrétariat à l’adoption internationale or consult the Secrétariat international adoption advisor as they are in the best position to provide information on adoption conditions in the countries of origin.
The adoptive parents will receive information not only on conditions in the country of origin that the adoption project concerns but also on the current situation there, for example a restrictive moratorium on the number of international adoptions allowed or the suspension of international adoptions in a territory for a specified or unspecified period.
Signing of the contract with the certified body
The signing of the contract between the adoptive parent and the certified body is compulsory and must take place before the adoption procedure begins. The contract must describe, among other things, the services that the certified body offers the adoptive parent and the breakdown of the estimated cost of the adoption.
Opening a file to the Secrétariat à l’adoption internationale
The certified body has the adoptive parent fill out the Adoption file request form , which is subsequently sent to the Secrétariat, along with the requisite documents. The Secrétariat verifies compliance with Québec’s requirements, in particular with respect to the age and domicile of the adoptive parent. Once the verifications have been completed, the adoptive parent receives a letter indicating that the Secrétariat has opened the adoption file. This letter is required to pursue the adoption procedure.