We are accepting families to adopt from Bulgaria! We are focused on matching children who are older or have special needs with forever families. View our Waiting Child Photolisting featuring waiting children in Bulgaria.
Bulgaria Adoption Overview
Program Coordinator: Tania Griasnow
Children Available: Children 7 years and older who are considered healthy, and children of all ages with special needs.
Parent Requirements: Married couples or single women ages 25 and older. The age difference between an adoptive parent and child can be no more than 50 years for the younger parent in an adoptive family and no more than 55 years for the older parent in the adoptive family. For a single parent the difference can be no more than 50 years between parent and child ages. Single men may also be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Travel Requirements: Two trips to Bulgaria: the first 7 to 8 days; the second 10 to 12 days
a. 2 to 4 months from submitting a dossier to registering with the Bulgaria Ministry of Justice
b. 14 to 22 months from registration to match to a child
More Details: Bulgaria Adoption with Carolina Adoption Services
About the Children
Bulgaria is a small country in Eastern Europe, and its cultural makeup is influenced by its neighbors. Children of Roma, Turkish and Bulgarian heritage are available for adoption from Bulgaria. Most of the children have an olive complexion, brown eyes and dark hair.
Numerous orphanages in Bulgaria work to arrange international adoptions for children 1 year and older, but the government of Bulgaria is particularly focusing its efforts to connect older children and children with special needs with adoptive families.
The Ministry of Justice is the central adoption authority in Bulgaria, and it maintains a registry of older adoptable children and adoptable children with moderate to severe special needs. Carolina Adoption Services regularly receives files of waiting children from our in-country partners. We advocate for these children through our Waiting Child Photolisting.
About Bulgaria Adoption with Carolina Adoption Services
After a family applies to the Bulgaria program and completes their home study, they may request a match with a child identified on the Waiting Child Photolisting, or begin their wait for a referral. We partner with Bulgarian adoption attorneys to access the national registry of available children. The attorneys learn what special needs a family would consider and then they view the special needs registry using that search criteria to seek a potential match of a child. The registry is only posted in Bulgarian, so partnership with these attorneys is essential.
Once a potential match is found, the family can work with Carolina Adoption Services and our in-country partners to make a request to Bulgaria Ministry of Justice for a formal match to that child.
Our Bulgaria Adoption Program and Process
Carolina Adoption Services staff assists families with the dossier paperwork for international adoption in Bulgaria. Once submitted, the dossier is translated into Bulgarian, legalized, and presented to the Bulgaria Ministry of Justice, which is the central adoption authority. The names of the parents are entered into the Registry for Foreign Adoptive Parents. The family is matched with a child by the International Adoption Council.
If not requesting a waiting child, families can expect to wait 14 to 22 months between the time they submit the dossier to the time they receive a referral. At that time, they will receive a medical, social, developmental and general background report along with pictures of the child.
Bulgaria Adoption Travel: What to Expect
Parents are met at the airport by an in-country representative and are escorted throughout their time in Bulgaria.
Adoptive parents must travel to Bulgaria for the first trip within two months of receiving the child’s information. Both parents, if the adoption is a couple, are expected to travel on this first trip, though it is not required.
On this first trip, they will meet the child they’ve learned about in the matching process. The first trip consists of daily visits with the child over a 5 day period. At the conclusion of the trip, acceptance paperwork is filed with the Bulgaria Ministry of Justice and the parents return to the United States.
Attorneys in Bulgaria present paperwork on the family and child to the court in the family’s absence to finalize the adoption.
Once the legal proceedings for the adoption are final, the parents will make their second trip to Bulgaria. Typically, the second trip is 3 to 6 months after the first trip. The second visit lasts 10 to 12 days and includes an interview at the U.S. Consulate in Sofia for the child’s immigrant visa. Only one parent is required to travel on the second trip, though both are encouraged to.
Bulgaria Adoption: The Country
Bulgaria is a small, picturesque country in Eastern Europe that is approximately the size of the state of Tennessee. Bulgaria borders the Black Sea, as well as the countries Turkey, Greece, Romania and Serbia. Most of the country’s 7.7 million residents are concentrated in its urban centers, particularly the capital city of Sophia. Bulgaria offers universal healthcare and education through grade 12, and is a member of the European Union. It has been a democracy since 1990, as well as has a market-based economy driven by power engineering, heavy industry and agriculture.