Alexandra Austin


In 1991, Alexandra Austin was nine years old when an Ontario couple, Joseph Austin and Silvana Marisa Di Giacomo, convinced her mother to let them adopt her and take her to Canada, even though she was not up for adoption.  After five months,  all the papeworks making the Austins legal parents were completed, but the Austins sent her back alone to Romania, two days after they adopted a Romanian baby girl.

Alexandra found herself back with her surprised mother, but in legal limbo and stateless. Canada had accepted her as a landed immigrant when the adoption was approved. But as she left the country before her adoptive parents filed a citizenship application, she never became Canadian.  The Austins had never cancelled the adoption and the child's documents had been altered, as is customary in such cases, to show her birthplace as Canada. As a result, Romanian authorities refused to recognize her and she was denied access to schooling and health care and to use her original name, and her mother had no parental rights or benefits.

In 2005, Alexandra has launched a $7 million lawsuit against her adoptive parents.

The government of Canada granted Alexandra and her now 2 children Canadian citizenship, and she returned to Canada with them in June 2009. 
A settlement was reached with the adoptive parents in 2010. 
Date: 1991-01-01

Facilitators

Location

Ancaster, Ontario
Canada
See map: Google Maps
DocumentDatesort icon
Return to Sender (2012 Broadcast)2012-01-18
Romanian suing Canadian couple over adoption2005-02-17
Rejected adoptee launches $7M suit (Canadian couple send 9 yr old girl back to Romania)2005-02-16
Rejected Romanian adoptee sues Canadian couple2005-02-16
Sent back after 5 months, adopted Romanian sues2005-02-16
Return to Sender (Television Documentary 2005)2005-00-00
0

Location

Pound Pup Legacy