Adoption STAR received the prestigious COA Hague Accreditation in 2008 during the first round of agency accreditations. Adoption STAR is accredited through 2017.
It is imperative that an adoption agency providing international adoption programs be accredited to do so. Hague Accreditation and Approval requirements will now be applied to all agencies and persons providing “adoptions services” in cases where a child immigrates to or emigrates from the United States for purposes of adoption.
Michele Fried CEO and Founder
The Intercountry Adoption Universal Accreditation Act (UAA) was signed by President Obama on Monday, January 14, 2013. UAA applies the Hague Accreditation and Approval requirements to all agencies and persons providing “adoptions services” in cases where a child immigrates to or emigrates from the United States for purposes of adoption.
COA is recognized by the U.S. Department of State to accredit agencies and approve persons under the requirements of the Intercountry Adoption Act. As such, if an organization is currently Hague Accredited through COA then they have already established the necessary policies, procedures and processes to comply with the mandate. However, these agencies will need to implement those practices with all their international adoptions, not just with Hague countries.
In accordance with the UAA and 22 CFR Part 96.12, effective July 14, 2014, an agency or person may not offer, provide, or facilitate the provision of any adoption service in the United States in connection with an international adoption unless it is:
- An accredited agency or an approved person;
- A supervised provider; or
- An exempt provider.
If you would like definitions of the above terms, please visit our Glossary.
Questions and Answers Regarding The Universal Accreditation Act
What is the UAA?
The Universal Accreditation Act applies the Hague Accreditation and Approval requirements to all agencies and persons providing “adoptions services” in cases where a child immigrates to or emigrates from the United States for purposes of adoption.
What does the UAA do?
It extends the standards set by the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption holding all adoption service providers to the same federal standards for both convention as well as non-convention adoptions.
When will the UAA take effect?
July 14, 2014.
Who will the UAA impact?
Any one who is hoping to adopt internationally especially those who are pursuing an adoption of a child from a non-convention country, where they do not already have an approved I600A.
How will the UAA impact me?
If you are working with Adoption STAR as your home study provider, we can still provide your home study service. However, you will need to discuss with your Primary or Placement agency whether or not they plan to become an Accredited Adoption Service Provider. Prior to July 14, 2014 your Primary Provider must have obtained Hague Accreditation.
Under the UAA will I need to find an accredited provider to assist me in my adoption from a non-convention country?
Yes. The UAA requires that all agencies providing adoption services in intercountry adoption cases involving orphan children and/or Convention adoptees must be accredited or approved, or be a supervised or exempted provider.
If I already have an I600A approved can I be grandfathered under the old regulations?
Yes, if your I600A is approved or pending prior to July 13, 2014 you may be able to continue your adoption with grandfathered status, meaning the UAA/Hague Adoption standards would not apply to your adoption. However, if you were to need an update to your home study because it expired, or your I600A lapsed, then your adoption would fall under the new standards.
If my home study was completed prior to July 14, 2014, will I need to complete it again so that it meet Hague Convention standards?
If your home study was signed & dated as final prior to July 14, 2014 you should not be required to get a new home study. However, if you require a home study update after July 14, 2014 then your home study would fall under the Hague convention standards.