International Adoption - United Arab Emirates

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DISCLAIMER: The information in this circular relating to the legal requirements of specific foreign countries is provided for general information only. Questions involving interpretation of specific foreign laws should be addressed to foreign counsel.

NOTE: The information contained in this flyer is intended as an introduction to the basic elements of children issues in the United Arab Emirates. It is not intended as a legal reference.

The American Embassy in Abu Dhabi has been informed by the Sharia Court that Sharia law does not permit adoption in the United Arab Emirates. The Sharia Court may grant a guardianship, but such a guardianship is insufficient for the filing of an I-130 petition for U.S. immigration purposes, according to the U.S. Board of Immigration Appeals.

Specific questions regarding adoption issues may be addressed to :

U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi
11th St. (also known as Al-Sudan St.)
P.O. Box 4009
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Telephone: (971) (2) 436-691
Fax: (971) (2) 435-786
After-hours telephone: (971) (2) 434-457

U.S. Consulate General in Dubai
21st floor of the Dubai World Trade Center
P.O. Box 9343
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Telephone: (971) (4) 313-115
Fax: (971) (4) 316-935

Note: The work week for both the Embassy in Abu Dhabi and Consulate in Dubai is Saturday through Wednesday from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM.

Embassy of the United Arab Emirates
1255 22nd Street, NW
Suite 700
Washington, D.C. 20037

Phone: (202) 955-7999

For further information on international inter-country adoption issues, contact the Office of Children's Issues at 202-736-7000, visit our home page on the Internet at, or send a nine-by-twelve-inch, self-addressed envelope to:

Office of Children's Issues
2401 E Street, N.W.
Room L127
Washington, D.C. 20037
Phone: (202) 736-7000
Fax: (202) 312-9743

In addition, the State Department publishes Consular Information Sheets for every country in the world, providing information such as location of the U.S. Embassy, health conditions, political situations, and crime reports. When situations in a country are sufficiently serious, the State Department issues Travel Warnings which recommend U.S. citizens avoid traveling to a country. These documents are available on the Internet at or by calling the State Department's Office of Overseas Citizen Services at (202) 647-5225.

Information on immigrant visas is available from the State Department's Visa Office, at (202) 663-1225. This 24 hour automated system includes options to speak with consular officers during business hours for questions not answered in the recorded material. Application forms and petitions for immigrant visas are available from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, the nearest office of which is listed in the federal pages of your telephone book, under U.S. Department of Justice.
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