Monday, November 15, 2010
Update on Allie
While we don't know any new information concerning Allie, I have received quite a few questions from friends and family about when we will travel.
In May, Ethiopia passed a new law that states families must appear in the Ethiopian federal court personally stating that they would like to adopt the child. While I don't like the idea of having to go twice within a short period of time, I do understand the need for the law. Prior to May, a representative from our agency would appear on our behalf, and the only time the family would travel to Ethiopia was to pick up their child.
So right now we are simply waiting on our court date. It appears that it takes 6-8 weeks to get a court date from acceptance of referral. We are on week 4 right now. Our agency is estimating that our court date will be in January because their most recent date given was already December 20th. You normally receive a court date several weeks before you travel. When traveling for court, we will stay in Ethiopia for approximately 3 days (5 days totals for trip). During this visit, we will get to meet our daughter and spend lots of time with her. Once we appear in court, she will be ours (assuming all other required persons and documents appear), and unfortunately, we will then have to leave her there. That is not going to be easy. While she will officially be our daughter, the US will not allow her entry just yet. It takes them approximately 4-6 weeks to process her visa and citizenship documents.
Once those documents are complete (4-6 weeks after first trip), we will travel to Ethiopia again to meet with the embassy and then bring our daughter back home. During this trip, we will be there 5 full days (7 days total for trip), and we will be able to see some of the sights. We will also get a chance to visit the orphanage. You normally only have about a week's notice (sometimes a few days) before traveling for this trip.
In the meantime, we are getting vaccinations, getting Allie's room ready, getting more documentation ready -- and just patiently waiting. :-)