“My husband and I have talked in depth about adopting his sister’s son whom is residing in the Phillippines. He is not yet the age of 18 years old. We made contact with his sister and she believes it’s a great idea as well. Unfortunately we came to a problem on how do we go about starting the procedures. We are a military family and we are set to travel to our next duty station to Okinawa Japan. Is there any way we can adopt him and how?”
Both the United States and the Philippines are signatories to the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption, so that would apply here. The child will need to be approved for adoption through the Central Authority of the Phillippines through the The Inter-Country Adoption Board (ICAB), and that is where you would start. Here is their website: www.skyinet.net/~icaba/
Since you need to start this process in the Philippines, I will defer to experts there. I did run into some information saying that children not at risk or over 15 years of age would not be eligible for relative adoption, but you may get a different answer from the ICAB. The Departments of State and Immigration as well as attorneys skilled in international adoptions could also be valuable resources for you.