Adoption and Statelessness in the US

This week the Washington Post published an article highlighting how children adopted from overseas by American parents often grew up assuming they were American citizens, but later on many found out it wasn’t the case. Many parents never knew there were additional processes required to pursue naturalization for their adopted children, or otherwise didn’t follow through with all the paperwork.

Although the US enacted legislation in 2000 to retroactively grant citizenship to adoptees who were under 18 and already in the United States, and citizenship is now often granted automatically after adoption, that still leaves out “an estimated tens of thousands” of others who were 18 and over at the time - and still remain without American citizenship. This highlights another way loopholes in laws or administrative practices - as well as lack of knowledge of the law - can leave people without full citizenship rights.

Have issues around adoption come up in your work to promote the right to an effective nationality? If so, where and how? What other unusual cases or legal loopholes have you encountered? @mustafa_mahmoud @Ferghana_lawyers @lore @safialabi @SharifHassanein @urdu @yasahkym