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Internationally adopted kids applying to college


Replies to: Internationally adopted kids applying to college

  • me29034me29034 Registered User Posts: 1,206 Senior Member
    edited May 20
    I think this really varies by state. We are in MA and just needed to go to our town hall and fill out a form and show paperwork to get a birth certificate. But, the birth certificate is not a very useful item. It says right on it that it isn't proof of citizenship. I don't think I've ever used his birth certificate for anything other than registering for kindergarten.

    Edited to add: now that I think about it, maybe I did use it when getting his passport. It's been awhile so I can't remember.
  • annamomannamom Registered User Posts: 919 Member
    @bearcatfan and @me29034 thank you. I am going to give the county a call.
    when I enrolled her for kindergarten, I have to use our adoption paper..I thought it will be nice for her to have her birth certificate...
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 14,111 Senior Member
    I got a state issued 'Certificate of Foreign Birth' when I went through the readoption process, along with a name change certificate. I don't find it useful at all because it doesn't look like a state birth certificate and seems to throw people (sports registration, school registration). I use the passport for everything. When getting her driver's license, I could have provided a certified copy of the birth certificate (which would have required getting one certified) and all her citizenship paperwork, or...a passport. Always go with the passport.

    By the way, the same requirements of a certified birth certificate (certified within the last 6 months) applied to me and my US born daughter too. Used our passports.

  • bearcatfanbearcatfan Registered User Posts: 696 Member
    So now it's getting real here and I am starting to read (elsewhere) that some people are being asked to provide citizenship status for financial aid. I have her CofC, and nowhere on the FAFSA does it ask you to prove anything other than check a box. At what point do you get asked, if at all?

    Should I ask our local SS office to check that her status is right with them? She's provided her SSN for everything without a problem, including her driver's license and jobs, but is that proof of any status?

    Ugh. Just one more thing.
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 14,111 Senior Member
    I was never asked for any proof (other than checking the 'yes' box for citizenship). We also have never had an issue getting a passport, job, SS card, driver's license, etc. My daughter got her SSN when she was a permanent resident and I took the C of C to the SSA to change the status to 'citizen' when we got the C of C (she arrived pre- Child Citizenship Act, became a citizen on the effective date of the Act, 2-27-01, and got the C of C a week later because we were in process).

    A friend's daughter had her tax return rejected this year. She's 16, so working her first job and filing for the first time solo. SSA had her birth date wrong, and friend had never had any trouble with any other forms, including her own taxes and taking the child as a dependent. If this daughter had tried to get a FSA ID, should wouldn't have been able to do it because the information wouldn't match. Now it is fixed for next year when she will fill out a FAFSA.

    If you were able to get a FSA ID, you should be good to go.
  • bearcatfanbearcatfan Registered User Posts: 696 Member
    edited June 15
    I have not tried getting a FAFSA ID for her yet. So if I can get a FAFSA ID for her, that means the SSA has her listed as a citizen?

    She's also filed taxes (and been claimed on ours) without incident. Luckily I live in a small town, so maybe I will call over there today and ask how to doublecheck that status. I don't remember bringing her CofC there, but I could have.
  • bjkmombjkmom Registered User Posts: 4,561 Senior Member
    They don't ask for it when you file FAFSA. The individual schools will request it before THEY file your daughter's financial aid papers.

    Having the CoC should do it.
  • bearcatfanbearcatfan Registered User Posts: 696 Member
    @bjkmom So that means I file the FAFSA, and when the schools get it the schools may or may not contact me for proof? Is that only if the SSA doesn't have the child listed as a citizen?

    Like I said, I honestly can't remember if I went back to the SSA or not - not sure I knew that I needed to. I do have the CofC though. I will call over there today and see what they say.

    It sounds like I have some breathing room to get this done, though. I feel like I am knee deep in college visits, applications, essays and other admissions stuff. One more thing on the pile. 8-}
  • bearcatfanbearcatfan Registered User Posts: 696 Member
    edited June 15
    So I called our local SSA and they actually did check both girls over the phone - a benefit of living in a small town, I guess.

    They are both listed as US citizens. I wouldn't have minded going down and showing paperwork, but just knowing this is a relief. I don't remember ever doing it, or ever being told I should. I could have, though. You know how all that post-adoption paperwork just blends together. :))
  • begoodbegood Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    That's great, @bearcatfan!
  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone Registered User Posts: 14,111 Senior Member
    Did you adopt after 2001? Did they enter the US as citizens? If so, they may never have been listed as resident aliens so you may never have needed to go to change anything. We are getting to the age where most of the 17-18 year olds applying to college will have been adopted after 2001 and the majority will be issued the original SSN as 'citizen" if the adoption was finalized in the country of origin.

    A college may ask or not ask. D's never asked for anything, and her loans went through just fine. Some colleges see place of birth and automatically ask for proof. You shouldn't have to show it (and if they ask they actually have to see the original C of C or passport), but often it is just easier to comply rather than to prove you are right and they don't need the document.
  • bjkmombjkmom Registered User Posts: 4,561 Senior Member
    We didn't fill out the SSA. But each of the schools that accepted him asked for a copy of page 1 of his passport- or his passport ID Number, I forget which, before they would file anything in the way of financial aid.

    He's a US citizen-- he became one when his adoption was finalized. That didn't matter; they still needed proof in the form of either a passport or CoC.

    My son arrived in the US in January of 1999, and we knew the law was in the process of changing. By the time his US adoption was finalized, it had changed. So it never occurred to us to get a passport of CoC-- we figured there was no need. We were wrong, and wasted precious time last year trying to convince the schools that he didn't need the documentation as a federal law made him a citizen.

    I've warned the kids in my SAT classes-- if any are international adoptees, it's probably just easier to get a passport and save the hassle.
  • bearcatfanbearcatfan Registered User Posts: 696 Member
    edited June 15
    @twoinanddone One was adopted in 2000 - right before the CofC became automatic, so we did all that paperwork. The other one was adopted in 2003 but we still had to get the CofC the old way because I traveled without my husband.

    I guess we will see who wants to see what. So far, in my small town, no one has batted an eye at either of them when we do official things - my oldest has a license and my youngest has a state-issued ID card (for domestic airline travel).
  • Lulee1Lulee1 Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    Our daughter was adopted from Korea in 1998. I don't recall receiving a Certificate of Citizenship, though I may have. But we got her a passport in 1999. She applied to eight colleges. Four requested proof of citizenship. Her high school college counselor made copies of the relevant passport pages and faxed them to the four colleges. One college, a university in a rural western state, refused to accept the fax from her high school. The financial aid director at that university said she would have to bring her passport in person to the financial aid office. If she did not, we were told she would not receive any financial aid, though merit aid would still be awarded. It was disappointing, especially since I and most of my family graduated from that university. She ended up attending an east coast LAC where she is very happy.
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