Data are collected annually for the National Adoptions Data Collection. Aggregate data are provided by state and territory departments and by the Department of Home Affairs. Information is collected on all children placed for adoption and those who had a finalised adoption order in Australia during a financial year. Some data are also collected on children whose adoption order was finalised during the previous financial year. Collected data include characteristics of adopted children, their parents, and their adoptive families. 

Data are also collected on associated administrative processes data including applications and vetoes for contact and information exchange, the type of authority responsible for the adoption, the types of consent provided for the adoption, the median time for intercountry adoption processes, the status of adoption orders at 30 June, and the number of adoption specific visas issued. Data are published annually by the AIHW in the annual Adoptions Australia report series, in online data visualisations, factsheets, in aggregate data tables, and in a snapshot for Australia’s welfare.

Collection details
Classification/dimension variables
  • Age
  • Sex
  • Indigenous

Temporal coverage 

from 1/7/1990

Geographical coverage

National and State

Data availability

  • Publications
  • Data cubes
  • Summary tables published in electronic form

Unit records are not available.

Data scope 

Data relate to children placed with adoptive families during a financial year and those who had an adoption order finalised during a financial year. Additional data are also collected on adoption specific visas issued during a financial year (these data may relate to adoptions that occurred in previous years).


Admin data

Metadata information and data quality statement DQS

Adoptions 2020-21 DSS
(METEOR 749045)

Adoptions Australia 2020–21 DQS
(METEOR 751171)

Adoptions Australia 2021-22 DQS

(METEOR 76081)

External links and information 


Adoptions - reports

Adoptions - data visualisations


[email protected]

*Data collection with restricted access