ICWA - Indian Child Welfare Act

Native American Child Adoption

The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) was passed in 1978 to protect the interests of Native American individuals and tribes, and specifically children in adoption and foster care proceedings. According to the provisions of the ICWA, when a Native American child is put up for adoption or placed in foster care, preference is given to a family member of the child, a member of the tribe to which the child belongs or to a Native American family.

Individuals who are looking to adopt a Native American child should be aware of the ICWA and how it affects the adoption process. Even if the child is not 100 percent Native American, the provisions of the ICWA may still apply.

Understanding the Native American Child Adoption Process

The legal process of adoption becomes more complicated when multiple governing bodies have a say in the process. At Berg, Debele, DeSmidt & Rabuse, P.A., we understand the adoption process as it applies to Native American children.

We have experience representing non-Native American families in ICWA adoptions. While the tribe to which the child belongs may ultimately decide whether to approve a Native American child adoption, we can explain the state and federal adoption laws to which you must adhere, as well as those established by the ICWA and local tribal courts.

Find out more about the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC), which could affect you if you are looking to adopt a child from another state.

Contact an Experienced Adoption Lawyer

For more information about Native American child adoption and the child placement process, contact an attorney in downtown Minneapolis.