The purpose of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) is " protect the best interest of Indian Children and to promote the stability and security of Indian tribes and families by the establishment of minimum Federal standards for the removal of Indian children and placement of such children in homes which will reflect the unique values of Indian culture... "(25 U.S. C. 1902). ICWA provides guidance to States regarding the handling of child abuse and neglect and adoption cases involving Native children and sets minimum standards for the handling of these cases.

What would you like to do?

Indian Affairs Logo ICWA Designated Agents Listing

The regulations implementing the Indian Child Welfare Act provide that Indian Tribes may designate an agent other than the Tribal chairman for service of notice of proceedings under the Act. This directory includes the current list of designated Tribal agents for service of notice.

Top Tasks

First time? Start here.

  • Guide

    ICWA Guide

    Guide for Implementing the Indian Child Welfare Act

  • FAQs


    Frequently Asked Questions; Final Rule; Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA)

  • Proceedings


    Proceedings; Final Rule; Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) PDF, June 17, 2016

What you need to know

State Court

  • Verify with Tribes and identify "Indian child's Tribe"
  • Determine jurisdiction
  • Apply ICWA's placement preferences

Learn More About State Court

Adoption Institution

  • Question custody proceedings involving an "Indian Child"
  • Seek guidance from regional social services

Learn More About Adoption Institution

State Agency

  • Inquire about the eligibility with due diligence
  • Use and document active efforts to prevent the breakup of a family
  • Apply ICWA's placement preferences

Learn More About State Agency

Tribe Coordinator

  • Verify membership and eligibility
  • Become designated as "the Indian child’s Tribe"
  • Participate in active efforts

Learn More Tribe Coordinator

Contact Us

Office of Indian Services
Division of Human Services
Bureau of Indian Affairs
1849 C Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20240
(202) 513-7642
(202) 208-2648