The Universal Accreditation Act of 2012, which went into effect in July of 2014, requires all adopting families to work with an accredited adoption service provider (ASP) for the six primary aspects of the adoption:
- Identifying a child for adoption and arranging an adoption;
- Securing the necessary consent to termination of parental rights and to adoption;
- Performing a background study on a child or a home study on a prospective adoptive parent(s), and reporting on such a study;
- Making non-judicial determinations of the best interests of a child and the appropriateness of an adoptive placement for the child;
- Monitoring a case after a child has been placed with prospective adoptive parent(s) until final adoption; or
- When necessary because of a disruption before final adoption, assuming custody and providing (including facilitating the provision of) child care or any other social service pending an alternative placement. 22 CFR 96.2 Definitions.
This significantly impacts families adopting from Nicaragua, because it makes it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to complete an independent adoption of a Nicaraguan orphan. As such, we are making available the following list of accredited service providers whom we know to be facilitating adoptions for U.S. families in Nicaragua. (Note: We are not making any sort of recommendations about these ASPs but are simply providing a list of known providers. We absolutely recommend contacting the individual agencies for referrals, and speaking to other families who have adopted through them. We will, however, share what we know and connect you with others who have used particular agencies, if requested. Also, If you know of others, please tell us.)