PR 01325.184 Jordan
A. PR 79-021 Validity Of Adoption In Jordan - George F. D~, Deceased, Loretta N. D~ For Georgia L. D~ — Social Security No. ~ — (Your Memorandum Dated February 22, 1979)
DATE: September l?, 1979
Adoption of a Christian under the laws of Jordan in effect in February of 1966 is set forth. George F. — ~ — GC (Aguilar) to GLPSC -
In connection with a claim for child's benefits under title II of the Social Security Act, we wrote you an opinion (dated May 10, 1974) on the validity of an adoption which occurred in Jordan in 1966. Based on the facts available in the claims file, we stated that there was no legal basis for adoption in Jordan, that the institution of adoption was not recognized by Islamic law, and that the Jordanian Law of Family Rights, Law No. 92 (1951), which is a codification of the principles of Islamic law, does not include among its articles any provision pertaining to adoption.
In a memorandum, dated February 22, 1979, you sent us additional evidence and asked us to determine whether this new evidence would change the outcome of our first opinion.
We believe that the new evidence does change the result of our prior opinion.
The new pertinent facts, as presented in your memorandum and the accompanying claims folder, are as follows: Two U.S. citizens adopted a Jordanian child, age 3, in Jerusalem in February 1966. The natural father of the child consented to the adoption. The natural mother of the child was deceased. The adoptive parents belonged to the Christian Approach Mission. The child was born in Amman, Jordan, on October 27, 1962 and was baptized in Christ the King, Latin Church, Amman, on March 2, 1964. The child is not a Moslem.
A report on adoption from the Law Library provides the following information:
As a general rule, all of the Christian denominations of the Middle East recognize adoptions. The adoption of a Christian under the laws of Jordan is governed by Law No. 2 of 1938 (The Law of Religious Councils of the Different non-Muslim Religious Denominations). This law permits all recognized Jewish and Christian communities to apply their own religious laws to matters concerning the personal status (e.g., adoption) of their members. However, when one of the parties involved in the adoption belongs to a different denomination or is a Moslem, then the secular court (e.g., Court of First Instance of Jerusalem) has jurisdiction to hear the adoption and to issue an adoption decree.
Based on the above report, it appears that the Court of First In- stance of Jerusalem had competence under the law to issue the adoption decree since the child belonged to the Latin Church while the adoptive parents belonged to the Christian Approach Mission, a non-recognized Christian denomination. Also, it appears that the adoption decree issued by the Court of First Instance in Jerusalem is valid.