Holt Children’s Services and Adam Crapser to Appeal South Korean Court Decision on Adoption

On May 16, 2023, a South Korean court announced its decision on South Korean adoptee Adam Crapser’s lawsuit against both Holt Children’s Services and the government of South Korea. According to an AP article, “A South Korean court on Tuesday ordered the country’s biggest adoption agency to pay 100 million won ($74,700) in damages to a 48-year-old man for mishandling his adoption as a child to the United States, where he faced legal troubles after surviving an abusive childhood before being deported in 2016.

However, the Seoul Central District Court dismissed Adam Crapser’s accusations against the South Korean government, which he saw as responsible for creating an aggressive, profit-driven adoption industry that carelessly removed thousands of children from their families during a child export frenzy in the 1970s and ’80s.”

Last week, Holt Children’s Services announced it is appealing the court’s decision. According to the Korea Times, “the main point of dispute is at what point an adoption agency’s duties as a guardian ends and argued that in Crapser’s case, Holt’s guardianship came to an end upon his arrival in the U.S.” Holt is also arguing that “the special adoption law requiring the verification of an adoptee’s citizenship acquisition and other protections, introduced in 2012, does not apply to Crapser’s case.”

Adam Crapser is also appealing “the court ruling that did not recognize the government’s liability in his troubled adoption.”