Child adoption in Cameroon will ensure the total transfer of all rights and duties of natural parents to the adopter. God’s desire for every legally married couple is to bless them with children of their own and in a case of childlessness, people are willing to go to extraordinary length to get a child of their own. Child adoption in Cameroon remains the only legal means for married couples who can’t procreate to have children of their own. However, an adoption can also be done just to better a child future. Adoption in Cameroon is a legal procedure in which the parental responsibility for a child is transferred from their birth parent to their adopters. 

An adoption order made in respect of a child, confers on the child full member right and privileges as if they had been born to the adoptive family. An applicant for adoption in Cameroon must have attain 40 years or married more than 10years or have fertility issues which must be backed by medical evidence. A single parent can also adopt. A family law solicitor ensures that the entire child adoption procedure adhere strictly to: Section 41 & 42 of the civil Status Registration ordinance No 80-02 of 29/06/1981, Section 18(1)(b) of Law No 2006/015 of 29/12/06, Section 10 of the Southern Cameroons High Court Law 1955 and Section 47(2) of the Adoption and children Act 2002.


This refer to an adoption process in which the applicant is a Cameroonians irrespective of their residence and usually target the adoptive child from the family genealogy. A family solicitor is expected to elicit relevant information from the prospective adoptive parents, the child to be adopted and the biological parents of the child, and further request the following documents:

  • Copy of marriage certificate 
  • Copy of birth certificate of applicant and the child 
  • Copy of consent letter under oath from the biological parents
  • Copy of medical certificate of the applicant and the child
  • Copy of morality report of the child 
  • Copy of non-conviction of applicant
  • Full photographs and passport size photo
  • Copy of bank statement from applicant  
  • Lease agreement of the adoptive parents to guarantee accommodation space for the child
  • Social inquiry report of the child from the ministry of social affairs

The above documents are required to prepare the child adoption originating processes which shall actually be filed in court to ensure the issuance of child adoption certificate and judgement.


child adoption from abroad

This refer to an adoption application in which the applicants are foreigners and usually target their adoptive children from orphanages. Applicants are expected to go through the strict process and will be required to submit the following;

  • Copy of birth certificates of applicants
  • Copy of criminal record of applicants
  • Copy of ID card of applicants
  • Marriage certificate of applicant (where applicable)
  • Medical report
  • Information as to the child sex and age to search in orphanages.
  • Medical certificate of fitness
  • Social report from a certify social worker in your country
  • Full photographs and passport size pictures
  • Residence / property description signed by local mayor or any competent
  • Copy of bank / income statement of applicants 
  • Legal engagement with a law firm specialized in family law
  • Morality report 
  • NB/ A Guarantor will be required preferably from Cameroon with same file compiled. 


The procedure for child adoption in Cameroon required the applicant through a family solicitor is expected to seize the Minister of social affairs and sign an engagement agreement authorizing the applicant to proceed and adopt a child in Cameroon. The applicant shall collaborate with the closest delegation of social affair and orphanage where the child to be adopted is residence.

The delegation of social welfare shall, after confirming the documentation of the applicant, permit the adoptive parent (s) custody with the child for purposes of familiarity for about 3 months and upon satisfaction submit a child adoption welfare report to the court so a final adoption judgement and certificate can be issued. Here are the child adoption legal papers expected to be presented to the competent judge.

  1. Filing an originating application
  2. Filing of support statement
  3. File Social welfare report  
  4. Notify state prosecutor for submission 
  5. Submit the originating motion in court  
  6. High court adoption decision.

Prospective adoptive parents should be very cautious about sending money or traveling to Cameroon to adopt a child from orphanages in Cameroon directly without going through the social welfare. We advise prospective adoptive parents to appoint a lawful family attorney in Cameroon to navigate through the process.


At the end of the child adoption process, the adoptive parents should be handed with a copy of the adoption judgement and a copy of the adoption certificate. These documents are very important especially when the adoptive parent intends to emigrate with the child abroad. The adoptive parent can now apply for a new passport of their adopted child and ensure that the registrar in court should inscribed the ruling as marginal notes on the birth certificate of the adopted child. Child adoption process under our expertise takes approximately 3 months for inter relative adoption.

In conclusion child adoption in Cameroon can be complicated and frustration enough reason why an experience family solicitor can help to streamline the process. Child adoption in Cameroon still remains one of the most complex areas of legal practice in Cameroon.

Article By: Barr. Mafany Victor Ngando. 

Kinsmen Advocates

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.