Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption Law and Legal Definition

The Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Convention) is an international agreement to safeguard international adoption, child laundering and child trafficking. It is commonly known as Hague Adoption Convention. The Convention applies to all adoptions between the U.S. and the other counties that have joined the Convention.

The Hague Conference on Private International Law developed the convention in order to protect persons involved from the corruption and exploitation of those associated with international adoption. The Convention was concluded in 1993, and it came into force in 1995. It is the landmark treaty on intercountry adoption that governs adoptions between the U.S. and nearly 75 other nations.

The convention aims:

To establish necessary safeguards to ensure that intercountry adoptions take place in the best interests of the child and with respect for his/her fundamental rights as recognized in international law;

To establish co-operation amongst Contracting States to ensure that those safeguards are respected and thereby prevent the abduction, the sale of, or traffic in children.

To secure the recognition in Contracting States of adoptions made in accordance with the Convention.