For adoption and fostering of a child from our home, Visit the Gender Development section of the Social Development Secretariat. (Second floor). Their office is in the Cyprian Ekwensi Centre for Arts and Culture located in Area 10, Garki, FCT Abuja.


Adoption In FCT-Abuja Information

Adoption is the process by which a legal and permanent parent-child relationship is created through a court process. In Nigeria, adoption may be effected either under statutory law or customary law. The rules regulating adoption differ from State to State. Timeframe for adoption is usually 1 and a half years – 2 years. There are different types of adoption; 
  1. Kinship Adoption: adoption of a child by a family member.
  2. Domestic/Public Adoption: adoption of a child from an orphanage or children’s home conducted and supervised by The Gender Development under the FCT Social Development Secretariat (SDS) and the family court. The process varies from state to state.
  3. Private Adoption: adoption of a child directly from the birth parent(s), this is handled by the attorney, FCT SDS, and the family Court. This process varies from state to state.
  4. International Adoption: In FCT, international adoption can only be granted to Nigerian citizens (both parents must be Nigerian)(duel citizens included). The adoption regulations and process of both countries must be followed, as well as compliance with the immigration law of the receiving country. 

Parent Requirements for Adoption

Single: must be over 35+ years and can only adopt the same gender.

Married: must be over 25 years and married for 2 yrs minimum.

Divorced: for over 2 years minimum.

Note: Parents above 50 years can’t adopt a child below 1 year, there can’t be an age difference of 45 years between the child and parents.

Separated couples can’t apply for adoption till their divorce is finalized.

Documents Requirements for Adoption

  • Birth Certificates of each parent
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Divorce Decrees
  • Passport Photographs (2) of each parent
  • National ID or International Passport of each parent
  • Financial Documentation- Proof of financial assets
  • Medical Documentation – from a govt. hospital of each parent
  • Police Report
  • References 
  • Evidence that the applicant(s) are residents of FCT for at least 5 years. 

Additional Information

  1. Nigeria doesn’t have any income requirement for adoption
  2. According to Nigerian law, a child must be under the age of 17 to be adopted.
  3. Regular status updates of the child till the child’s 18th Birthday are required by the govt.
  4. Fees for adoption: Adoption is free, however, there might be court fees, attorney fees, and agency fees (if any is used).
  5. Prospective adoptive parents should be aware that it is illegal to go to children’s homes or orphanages to search for a child. The homes don’t have the right to release a child to you nor pair you with a child.
  6. All processes involving adoption from an orphanage or children’s home is done solely by the Gender Development under FCT Social Development Secretariat
  7. You are allowed to request the child’s history from the birth parents or SDS during the adoption process.
  8. You are also allowed to take the child to the hospital for a full medical check-up.
  9. If the child is currently in school, you can request an academy update.
  10. A three-month bonding period is compulsory with the child no matter the age of the child.
  11. It is advisable to ask about the child’s daily upkeep and upbringing.
  12. The Address for Gender Development/ Social Development Secretariat, is Cyprian Ekwensi Centre For Arts and Culture, Area 10, Garki, FCT-Abuja.
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