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Intercountry adoption home study assessment report

Updated: 07 August 2019

The intercountry home study report helps to determine if applicants are eligible and suited to adopt a child and helps officials in another country to select a family for a particular child.

Home study report

The purpose of a home study report is:

  • to demonstrate that applicants are eligible and suited to adopt a child from a particular country, and
  • to enable officials in another country to select a family for a particular child and to be able to assess from the information how a child with certain attributes will fit into the family described.

The home study report is informed by the needs of intercountry adopted child and analysis of the applicants' capabilities to meet these needs. The home study combines factual and descriptive information about the applicants and the social work evidence and opinion that led to the recommendation at its conclusion.

Overseas officials may have little or no knowledge of conditions and lifestyles in New Zealand or of the nuances of the English language. Take care to ensure that the language used is factual, unambiguous, and free from jargon. If the translator misinterprets your meaning, the translated report could read significantly differently from the original document.

The task is to assemble the information succinctly, as it's based on cutting and pasting from other documents. It's therefore essential that is it peer-reviewed for overall coherence and lack of repetition as well as for clarity of meaning. It's then the supervisor’s responsibility to approve the document as complete and correct from the site before referring it to the New Zealand Central Authority (NZCA) in electronic form as a Final Draft.

The report format

The intercountry adoption home study report template provides a structure for the report. Details of applicants' family situation, life style, attributes and intentions, are to be clearly and concisely stated under the appropriate headings. Explanation will also be made, when relevant, as to how these relate to the norm in New Zealand.

The sources of information and/or comments need to be appropriately identified. If other documents are included as attachments, these should be referred to in the body of the report.

Intercountry adoption home study report template (DOCX 83 KB)

Working with applicants

When applicants ask about the progress of their application, they should not be given the impression that when the draft is received by the NZCA, it's almost complete.

Ideally this would be the case, but in practice there's often a need for ongoing discussion between the social worker and the advisor from the NZCA as to the completeness of the report. The report remains the site responsibility until it has been formally endorsed by the NZCA with the creation of a section 15 certificate.