South Korea Adoption


Wide Horizons For Children has served children in need in South Korea since the 1970s. Toddler-aged boys and girls are placed through this premiere adoption program. South Korea is a non-Hague Convention Country at present. All adoptions are overseen by the Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Family.

South Korea Adoption FAQs

Q: Am I eligible for the South Korea program?

A: To apply to this program, you must meet the following criteria:

Married Heterosexual Couples Age 25-44

• No more than a 10-year age difference between spouses
• Married three years or more
• No more than two divorces each
• No more than four children already in the home
• Commitment to fostering long term ties to local Korean-American community
• The approved Home Study Report must be completed before the applicants’ 45th birthday Applicants must be in good physical and mental health.
• Applicants must be in a good physical and mental health.Please contact Wide Horizons For Children to discuss specific eligibility requirements.
• All applicants should have a clean criminal history. However, some infractions may be accepted.

Age exception allowed for married couples, ages 45-49, only if they meet at least one of the following additional criteria:

• At least one spouse is a Korean adoptee.
• The family has already adopted from South Korea.
• The approved Home Study Report must be completed before the applicants’ 50th birthday.

Please note that the above criteria are not all-inclusive; all international programs require proof of financial stability and have additional restrictions with respect to criminal history, physical and mental health.




Q: Who sets the eligibility requirements?

A: Eligibility requirements for adoptive parents are determined by adoption officials in the child’s country of birth. In South Korea, all adoptions are overseen by are overseen by the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Family.

Q: Who are the children available in South Korea?


  • Toddler-aged boys and girls.
  • More boys are in need of international adoptive families. Families must be open to adopting a child of either gender.
  • Children are cared for by a Wide Horizons For Children partner’s foster families that have been approved and are supervised. Children receive excellent medical care.
  • Children placed through international adoption are voluntarily relinquished by their birth parent(s), who have made an adoption plan for them. Most children are 8-10 months of age at time of referral and 18-24 months old at time of arrival.

If you are open to a child with an identified medical need, you could request a match with a Waiting Child and bring your child home in under a year. Eligibility requirements are generally more flexible, and photos and medical information can be reviewed prior to match. Adoption subsidies are often available.

Q: How long does it take to adopt from South Korea?

A: Most applicants receive their child’s referral in less than six months after their dossier is submitted. Currently, there is no waiting list.

Q: Will I need to travel to South Korea?

A: Two trips of approximately one week each are required to bring your child home. You will most likely travel nine to 15 months after receiving your child’s referral. Both parents are required to travel for the first trip, and at least one parent, a U.S. citizen, is required to travel for the second trip. Accommodations in Seoul are modern and comfortable, and English is widely spoken.

Q: How much does an adoption from South Korea cost?

A: Financing Your Adoption explains how Wide Horizons For Children structures adoption fees and provides information on funding your adoption.

Download the Adoption Information Guide for specific fee sheets on each Wide Horizons For Children adoption program.

adopting from South Korea

For my wife and I, when we decided to pursue an international adoption, Korea was high on our list. Our son Daniel spent the first two years of his life in loving foster homes, which made his transition to our family easier. We were grateful to be able to meet his foster mother and foster brother when we went to Korea. His foster mother made a point of telling us how smart, loving and strong he was…all things 5 years later he still is.

Jonathan on Daniel, Adopted through the Wide Horizons For Children South Korea Program