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Nepal Adoption Law, 1990



1. The applicants should be couple. However, an application of a single woman, aged between 40 and 55 years, can be considered keeping in view her economic and social status.

2. The age of the applicants should not exceed 50 years.

3. The couple should have been married for at least 5 years.

4. One couple can adopt up to two children (a boy and a girl) at two different times, depending on the availability of children and the approval by the Adoption Committee. The time difference should be more than three years.

5. If the couple has one child, they can apply for only one child. In this case a medical proof of infertility should be submitted.

6. The age of the child to be adopted should not exceed 6 years.

7. The adoption committee has the full right to accept or reject the application.

8. Application forms are available from the office of the Adoption Committee on payment of US $ 75.00. This does not include administration and communication charges of US $ 50.00.

9. An application should be accompanied by the following:

a. Personal bio data.
b. Six copies of photographs.
c. Copy of health certificate of the couple.
d. Doctor's certificate of infertility.
e. Copy of marriage certificate.
f. Copy of birth certificate.
g. Photocopy of passport.
h. Social report from recognized government agencies.
i. Certificate of financial status.
j. Tax clearance certificate.
k. Bank statement.
l. Approval letter from the respective government for adoption.
m. Recommendation letter from five reputed persons.
n. Recommendation letter from the Embassy of the respective country.
o. Non-criminal certificate.

10. All the required documents should be officially translated into English if they are in other languages.

11. The approved applicant should come to Nepal to take the child.

12. In accordance with the laws of Nepal, the adopting parents should submit two copies of legal documents to the Nepal Children's Organization (NCO) mentioning that the government of the applicants has legally recognized the child. The documents should be sent immediately after the government recognizes the child.

13. Progress report of the child should be sent every six months.

14. If any problem or controversy arises concerning the adoption of the child, the NCO should be immediately notified of the matter. The NCO should be duly represented in the cases. All the incurring expenses will have to be borne by the person(s) adopting the child.

15. The above terms and conditions are subject to amendment without prior notification.

Nepal Children's Organization, Bal Mandir, Naxal, Kathmandu, Nepal
P. O. Box 6967, Kathmandu. Tel: 009771-4411202, 4410844 Fax: 4414485

Provisions of Adoption in the Muluki Ain (Civil Code) of Nepal
Chapter - 15

1. While making adoption, preference shall be given to such members of the family as are descended from the same mother. If such person is not available, then preference shall be given to the descendants of the sons of the stepmother, then to the descendants from one’s own grandfather, then to the sons of one’s daughters, then to the descendants of one’s great grandfather, then to sons of one’s own sisters. If none of the above-mentioned persons exists, then adoption maybe made from the sons of one’s own clan (Gotra). Adoption of persons belonging to different clan (Gotra) shall not be made so long as persons in the above-mentioned line are available. In case consent is not given about any person who should have been adopted in the order of preference, such refusal shall be taken in writing and if such writing is refused, adoption may be made to the person next in the hierarchy after the *concerned Village Development Committee, or member of municipality, or representative certifies the fact of such refusal as witness. Any adoption made otherwise than in the aforementioned line of hierarchy or made without completing the specified formalities shall be subject to completing the specified formalities shall be subject to revocation. Such adopted son whose adoption is so revocation. Such adopted son whose adoption is so revoked shall be entitled to inherit from his natural father.
2. Neither a male person who has a living son nor a female person whose husband is living or has a living son either of her own or of her husband’s wife as co-wife, may adopt any person. Any adoption made in contravention of this provision shall be void.
3. The Adoption of any person having been adopted pursuant to duly signed documents by a person entitled to make such adoption by virtue of not having any issue at the time of adoption, shall not be rendered invalid as a result of the subsequent birth of a son from the person making the adoption. He shall be entitled to partition of the property equivalent to that of a natural son.
4. Any child below the age of five years, if found abandoned, maybe adopted, if so desired, not withstanding the face that a successor within the hierarchy for adoption is available according to the law. Such child, if not adopted shall be entitled to such share of the property as maybe provided for in a written document and if no such document had been executed, such child shall be entitled to such property as may be given by the person giving him shelter. If no property is given to the child, the said child shall be given food and clothing until he attains the age of maturity in keeping with the status of the person providing shelter.
5. § Notwithstanding the fact that a person in the hierarchy for adoption is available according to the law, any child, below the age of sixteen, whose father is not living or whose whereabouts in not known, may be adopted with the consent of the mother of the child; and, if the mother also can not be found, with the consent of the person who has provided shelter to such child, or if the child is brought up in an orphanage recognized by the Government, with the consent of such orphanage.
6. Any person, who does not have a son but has a daughter only, may, prior to the marriage of his daughter and instead of adopting a son, appoint his daughter as a ‘dolaji’. The husband of such a dolaji immovable property of his wife. He shall be entitled only to such property as may be given by his wife at her pleasure. His claim shall lie only to his own paternal property.
7. In case a dolaji daughter dies without having any issue the intestacy shall devolve upon the rightful claimant of the person appointing her as dolaji daughter. If such a dolaji has a daughter only, she may, in writing, transfer her status of dolaji by surrendering the original documents and appointing her daughter as her dolaji and whereupon such a daughter shall be entitled to inherit the property of her mother as a dolaji daughter. No other claimant shall be entitled to the property of the said dolaji. If no such written document has been executed, the daughter shall be entitled to an allowance for marriage expenses and dowry up to ten percent of her mother’s property and the rest of the properly shall devolve upon the rightful claimant.
8. A dolaji daughter, if she has no issue of her own and has attained the age of forty five, may execute a deed to transfer her property in favor of her husband, whereupon he shall be entitled to the property.
9. An adopted son and a daughter who has been appointed as a dolaji may inherit, according to the existing law, the property of the father so adopting him or appointing her as dolaji.
10. An adopted son shall be entitled to share the property of his natural father only if such father, prior to giving in his son for adoption, has executed a deed to that effect.
¶9A. Any person except a male who has a daughter living or a female whose husband is living or whose own daughter is living, may adopt any female under the age of ten years as an adopted daughter.
¶9B. There shall be a difference of at least twenty-five years between the age of the adopted daughter and the adoptive father.
¶9C. The adopted daughter shall be entitled to the rights similar to that of a natural daughter. Such adopted as a daughter, such adoption shall not become invalid merely be reason of such birth. The adopted daughter shall enjoy the same rights as that of a natural daughter.
¶9D. In case a daughter is born from the adoptive parents after female person has been adopted as a daughter, such adoption shall not become invalid merely by reason of such birth. The adopted daughter shall enjoy the same rights as that of a natural daughter.
10.If at a later date the parents of an abandoned child are discovered, and further if it is proved that both the husband and wife conspired in abandoning the child the partitional share of the property of the parents of such child along with such share of the child shall be given to the person giving shelter to the child and if the child was born as a result of seduction, the partitional share of the father along with that of the child and the dowry and self acquired property of the mother shall be given to the person giving such shelter. The property delivered to such child shall not be adversely affected even if his adoption is not held valid under No. 4 o this chapter.
11. No adoption made in accordance with the provisions of law shall be revoked except for specific defaults. If the adopted son does not provide food and clothing to the adoptive parents befitting their status, squanders the family cash and landed property without prior consultation, assaults or causes to assault them, and, without making proper arrangements for the maintenance of the concerning country should send an up to date annual report of bringing up, educational status and employment etc. of such adopted child until the child is not of age (according to the Nepal Laws) to the Ministry of Home Affairs, to the concerned Orphanage or Bal Mandir where they were brought up and to their own father and mother too through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
12. Priority shall be given for the twins of the same family as possible as to give in adoption of son/ daughter in one family at the same time.

§ : Inserted by the Sixth Amendment

¶ : Amended by some Nepal Act relating to Court Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2047 (1990)

The End

1990 Jan 1