Madonna

Madonna can adopt a 3-year-old girl from Malawi, the country's highest court ruled Friday, overturning a lower court decision.

"As her lawyer I am happy that this has settled this contentious issue," Madonna's lawyer, Alan Chinula, told the Associated Press.

Chinula said he's making passport arrangements for the girl, Chifundo "Mercy" James, and is awaiting word on Madonna's travel plans.

A lower court rejected Madonna's request to adopt Mercy in April because the singer did not fulfill the country's 18- to 24-month residency requirement. She appealed.

On Friday, Chief Justice Lovemore Munlo praised Madonna's commitment to helping disadvantaged children through her charity, Raising Malawi. The judge condemned the lower court's ruling, saying it was based on archaic laws.

Mercy will be the second child Madonna has adopted from the African country. She adopted David, 3, in 2006 amid criticism of a decision to waive the residency requirement. Madonna has two older children, Lourdes, 12, and Rocco, 8.