The following fundamental principles shall govern adoptions of children from India, namely, -

- the child's best interests shall be of paramount consideration, while processing any adoption placement;

- preference shall be given to place the child in adoption with Indian citizens, with due regard to the principle of placement of the child in his own socio-cultural environment, as far as possible.

Child eligible for adoption

Any orphan or abandoned or surrendered child, declared legally free for adoption by the Child Welfare Committee is eligible for adoption.

Eligibility criteria for prospective adoptive parents

-     the prospective adoptive parents should be physically, mentally and emotionally stable; financially capable; motivated to adopt a child; and should not have any life threatening medical condition;

-      any prospective adoptive parent, irrespective of his marital status and whether or not he has his own biological son or daughter, can adopt a child;

-     single female is eligible to adopt a child of any gender:

-      single male person shall not be eligible to adopt a girl child;

-       in case of a couple, the consent of both spouses shall be required;

-       no child shall be given in adoption to a couple unless they have at least two years of stable marital relationship;

-       the age of prospective adoptive parents as on the date of registration shall be counted for deciding the eligibility and the eligibility of prospective adoptive parents  to apply for children of different age groups

-     the minimum age difference between the child and either of the prospective adoptive parents should not be less than twenty five years;

-       the age for eligibility will be as on the date of registration of the prospective adoptive parents;

-        couples with more than four children shall not be considered for adoption.

  As soon as a child is declared legally free for adoption by the Child Welfare Committee, such child may be allowed to be given in adoption to a resident Indian or non-resident Indian parents:

Provided that such child shall be allowed to be given in inter-country adoption ―

- after sixty days, if the child is below five years of age;

- after  thirty days, if the child is above five years of age or is a sibling;

- after fifteen days, if the child has any mental or physical disability.