The U.S. Embassy in San Salvador is committed to assisting U.S. Citizens who choose to adopt children from El Salvador. Our Adoption Team is eager to help inform parents about the process; however, U.S. law prevents us from providing legal counsel or acting as a legal advocate or representative on behalf of prospective adoptive parents.

Both the United States and El Salvador are party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention). Therefore, all adoptions between El Salvador and the United States must meet the requirements of the Convention and U.S. law implementing the Convention. In order for an adoption application to meet the requirements of the Hague Adoption Convention, a U.S. consular officer must review the case file and issue an “Article 5 Letter” to the Salvadoran Central Authority before an adoption or grant of legal custody takes place.

If you believe you do not meet the requirements for Hague adoption, and plan to adopt a child through the “orphan” (I-600) or Immediate Relative (IR2) process, you should contact our Adoption Team immediately.  Please also keep in mind that choosing to adopt your child locally and then seeking the Immediate Relative Visa through an I-130 petition process requires you have had legal custody of the child for two years before you can apply for the immigrant visa. In El Salvador, the parents must have legal custody of the child for 1 year before the adoption will be finalized. Therefore, you should expect to reside in El Salvador a minimum of 2-3 years, and there may be no avenue for you to bring the child to the United States should your circumstances change unexpectedly.

We encourage you to contact the Salvadoran Central Authority for Adoptions to inquire about the local adoption process. The Oficina para Adopciones (OPA) is available for personal consultations regarding the adoption process in El Salvador, and all prospective adoptive parents are invited to schedule a consultation personally via the email and/or mailing address below.

Lic. Fidelina del Rosario Anaya de Barillas

Procuraduría General de la República

9ª. Calle Poniente y 13 Ave. Norte, Torre PGR,

Centro de Gobierno

San Salvador, El Salvador

Tel:  +503 2231-9418, +503 2231-9424, +503 2231-9412



Should you decide to begin the adoption process in El Salvador, and the Salvadoran Central Authority confirms that the/a child is in fact eligible for adoption, please visit the Department of Homeland’s Security’s USCIS website for more information regarding the immigration process for adopted children.

After learning about your adoption options through your consultation with OPA, please also contact our Adoption Team in the Immigrant Visa Unit at the Embassy of the United States to discuss the visa process at:

For more detailed information regarding adoptions please visit the U.S. Department of State’s website on intercountry adoptions.  And, to help you navigate the adoption process in your country of choice, please be sure visit the page dedicated to country specific adoption information.