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Adoption allowance

Adoption allowanceThe adoption allowance ('prime d'adoption' / 'adoptiepremie') is a one-off payment from the Belgian state for each child that is adopted, paid by a family allowance agency.

Within the Belgian system, different family allowance systems - with similar rules and amounts - are in place for:


Employees in the Belgian system

Who submits the application?

If the child is adopted by:

    • one parent, it is this person who submits the application

    • a male-female couple, the adoption allowance is requested by the father if he is an employee (or unemployed, on a career break or long-term sick leave, or retired). 

      If the father is not an employee, the mother, if she is an employee, can submit the application.

    • a same-sex couple, the adoption allowance is requested by the older of the parents

If neither parent is an employee, how you request the birth allowance will depend on whether you are a Belgian civil servant or self-employed.

If the adoptive parents are neither employees nor independent, it may still be possible to receive an adoption allowance. Contact your family allowance agency for more information.

How do I apply?

You can request this allowance as soon as the adoption procedure is under way, and the child is registered as part of your household.

    • If this is your first child you have to request the allowance from the family allowance agency your employer is linked to - ask your employer to provide you with the relevant form. Complete and return the form.

    • If you receive family allowance for another child you have to request the allowance from the agency that currently pays you family allowance. Ask this agency for the relevant form to request the adoption allowance. Complete and return the form.
In both cases, you will also need to send: 
    • a copy of the adoption act or request to adopt ('l’acte d’adoption' or the 'requête en adoption' / 'de adoptieakte' or the 'verzoekschrift tot adoptie'); and

    • proof that the child is officially part of the adoptive parents' household (if the child is already registered at the commune, no further proof is needed; if registration is not yet complete, a statement from 2 witnesses can suffice)
How much do I receive and when?                                        

How much?

The adoption allowance is the same as the allowance for the birth of a first baby, i.e. a lump sum of around €1220 per child.

For subsequent adoptions, the amount stays the same.

 

When?

As soon as the family allowance agency receives all the necessary paperwork, they make the payment as soon as possible.

Read more about the adoption allowance (in French).

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Belgian civil servants ('fonctionnaire' / 'ambtenaar')

If no-one in your household is an employee, but you and/or your partner are Belgian civil servants, you can apply for the adoption allowance through the family allowance agency specific to your service. Ask your HR department for more information.

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Self-employed

If no-one in your household is an employee or a Belgian civil servant, but you and/or your partner are self-employed, you can apply for the adoption allowance through your ‘caisse d’assurances sociales’ / ‘socialeverzekeringsfonds’ (social security agency).

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Other situations

If you do not fall under any of the categories mentioned here, contact the Office national d’allocations familiales pour travailleurs salariés (ONAFTS) / Rijksdienst voor Kinderbijslag voor Werknemers (RKW) to find out if and how you are entitled to an adoption allowance. Some examples of other situations are: teachers, students, workers in the catering industry.

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