According to the agreement, potential adoptive parents will be required to provide a comprehensive package of documents assuring their social, medical, psychological, and economic suitability.
The agreement gives the Russian side the priority in all controversial situations, including in the event of the child’s re-adoption. It also establishes the principles of child adoption such as control over the child’s living conditions and upbringing.
Under the law, same-sex couples do not have the right to adopt Russian children.
Russia already has similar agreements with Italy and France.
The document was signed in Madrid on July 9, 2014 and ratified by Spain on October 16, 2014. On February 20, 2015 it was ratified by the Russian State Duma (the lower house of Parliament).
The signing of such agreements has become obligatory after adoption procedures were changed in 2013 when the Russian Parliament amended the country’s Family code regarding the adoption of children by foreign citizens.
Since then citizens from countries that allow same-sex marriages can adopt Russian children only if their governments have signed and ratified bilateral agreements with Russia which guarantee that Russian children are only adopted by heterosexual couples.
According to the Ministry of Science and Education, Spanish citizens have adopted 7,517 Russian children in the past nine years, including 303 in 2013.