Bulgarian Adoption During Covid

Adopting 3 YO Son in 25 Months

Meet one of our families who complted their adoption in about 25 months who came home with their handsome 3 year old son from Bulgaria.

Walking Out of the Orphanage!

Finish Home Study3 Months
Get CIS Approval1.5 Months Later
Inscribed in Bulgarian Registrar2 Months Later
Receive Referral for a 3 Year Old Boy10 Months Later
Covid Delays3 Months (Mid March – Mid June)
First Trip (Skype)1.5 Months Later
Second Trip 4 Months Later
Total: 25 Months

See Other Parents' Timelines

We have a few other families who are happy to share their stories and their timelines.  To see how long it took them to adopt, please see:

Jessica and Jeremy's story

Sam and Stacie's story

Monica and Manuel's

Ana's story

Christian and Cassandra's

Daniel and Alexandra's

Megan and Mike's

Paul and April's

Lori's

Bonding in Bulgaria 

Adoption Timeline During Covid

This family began their adoption process with Poland, but decided to switch to Bulgaria.  

It took them 25 months to adopt their 3 year old son!

That is an incredible timeline for any adoption, and especially for an adoption of a young child (3 year old).  Their story is a true blessing and should serve as inspiration to future adoptive parents!

We’ll take you through their timeline below to show you how it worked out, and educate future parents about the steps in the process.

Adopted child and his father

How Were They Able To Do It So Quickly?

In short, compliments to Bulgaria and the Bulgarian Ministry of Justice.

The Bulgarian Central Authority with approval from the US Embassy in Sofia has allowed Skype visits, and taken away Quarantine requirements with proof of Negative Covid Test.

None of our clients were delayed as they were given the option to meet their children online.  And when they traveled, as long as they showed necessary negative tests, none of them were asked to quarantine.

Bulgaria is back to its normal procedures at this time, and our clients are making 2 physical trips.

Adoptive parents with child in foster care in Bulgaria.
Adoptive parents bonding with son in Bulgaria.
Adoptive parents and their son in Bulgaria.

See This Family’s Steps

adoption contract

Step 1 – Contract

The first step of becoming a client is signing a contract with our agency.  This initiated their process and we set out to help them meet eligibility requirements for a Bulgarian adoption.

Application to adopt from a Hague Country.

Step 2 – I800A

3 months after signing their contract to adopt from Bulgaria, the family submitted their  I800-A Application.  Before you get to that point you have to complete your home study.  Once your home study is approved by your Accredited Adoption Agency, you will send it to USCIS for their approval.  This is a key dossier document used in the foreign country for your eligibility as an adoptive parent. This family’s home study was done by Adoptions from the Heart and they did an excellent job!

CIS approval for adoption.

Step 3 – CIS Approval

2 months later, CIS reviewed and approved the family’s I800-A Application. That approval resulted in the family getting their CIS approval.  This approval is a key document needed for your approval in Bulgaria.
Bulgarian Government approval for adoption.

Step 4 – Bulgarian Registrar

2 months later, the family’s entire dossier including their CIS Approval and approved home study (or home study for expats) was sent to Bulgaria to be translated and submitted with the Bulgarian Central Authority (CA).   The CA issues an official letter confirming that their file has been “inscribed in the registrar”.  Put more simply, it means that the adoptive parents’ file has been approved and they are now “officially waiting” to be matched with a child.
Bulgarian waiting child photolisting.

Step 5 – Referral

Not even 10 months later, the family received incredible news that a referral of a 3 Year Old boy matching the characteristics in their home study  has been found for them!  A 10 month wait to be matched with a 3 year old boy from the “traditional route” is incredibly fast!  At this time, we can’t show you his face, but we promise he is super cute!  Soon, we’ll be able to show you full pictures!
family adopting a child from Bulgaria.

Step 6 – Skype

2 months later, the Bulgarian CA allowed the family to meet their child through Skype, instead of requiring them to travel during this uncertain time (Covid).  The family was very appreciative of this gesture by the Bulgarian government and the US Embassy in Sofia. The family received a schedule during which time Skype sessions would take place each day, similar to the schedule they would have had if they had gone to Bulgaria to meet the child in person.   This action by Bulgaria allowed adoptions to continue moving and is consistent with the goal of the Hague Convention to pursue the best interest of the child – which is to be with a family instead of the orphanage.

Adoptive dad and his son.

Step 7 – Back Home!

Per God’s grace, this family was able to finalize their adoption and come back home with their 3 year old son in 25 months.  Portions of their adoption was delayed because of Covid delays and closures. 

Post Adoption Report:

All adoptions require post adoption reports.  Ideally, the social worker who did your home study comes back to check on you and see who your family is bonding.  

A report, about 2 – 3 pages typically, is written and send back to Bulgaria.  For Bulgaria, the post adoption reports required are at 2 weeks, 6 months, 12 months, 18 months and 24 months.  We love sharing pictures of our “St. Mary’s kids” from their post adoption reports.  Here is a few. Enjoy! 

Update: 6 Months After Coming Home!

Mom and her adopted son 6 months after adoption.
Dad and his adopted son 6 months after adoption.

How Can I Afford to Adopt?

With our agency, which we believe is unique, the cost of the adoption becomes due on your own timetable, not ours.  We call this a floating fee structure”

We also offer 37 month financing which lets you make a fixed monthly payment for 37 months.  Some of our parents love this option because it lets them spend less money before they can qualify for grants.

Getting the adoption tax credit also helps parents with the cost of international adoption.

What Are Orphanages Like?

See this blog with 3 separate adoptive parents share their thoughts on what the orphanage is like?

See Lori’s Interview from 2017.

See Jessica’s Interview from 2019. 

See Christian and Cassie’s Interview from 2021.

Succes Stories

Learning about the process by seeing how different families went through each step can be a good learning experience for future adoptive parents.  We've shared several stories, each with real timelines, and steps, as they happened in real life to real families.

Christian and Sandra's Story

Finished adoption in 27 months.

Monica and Manny's Story

Finished adoption in 25 months

Jeremy and Jessica's Story

Finished adoption in 20 months

Stacy and Sam's Story

Finished adoption in 18.5 months

Lori's Story

Finished adoption in 18 Months

Ana' Story

Finished adoption in 20 months.

Paul and April's Story

Finished adoption in 28 months

Mike and Megan's Story

Finished adoption in 30 months

Daniel and Alexandra's Story

Finished adoption in 36 months

Gabe and Jessica's

Adopted 2 Year Old

Continue Your Research

We are humbled to have over 23 years of experience with BulgarianPolish and Serbian international adoption. We also help parents adopt children with special needs such as Down Syndrome.  Continue to learn about the process and your options by checking the links below.  If you have any questions, we offer a FREE, No-Obligation Consult.  The consult is a great place to start your research.

Text us or call us with any questions.  704 527 7673.

NC licensed adoption agency with 24 years of international adoption experience.