This is an extract of our Adoption document, which we sell as part of our Family Law Notes collection written by the top tier of Oxford students.
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Supervision 6 - Adoption Adoption There is always a problem question where parent gives consent then changes mind. Why? If they give consent, there is no problem. If they don't give consent, it is a very easy question as just dispense with it!
s46 ACA 2002 - Adoption Order extinguishes PR of birth parents. This is the only way to lose PR without revocation of a PR order. So extreme order, so ensure last resort!
1. Is it in the child's interests to be adopted?
a. Look to welfare test in s1 ACA - Bainham notes this is more human rights compliant as it allows the views of the parents to be considered in s1(4)(c)-(f).
2. Placing the Child for Adoption a. Under s22 ACA the Local Authority must apply to court for a placement order. Even if it feels it is unlikely to find a placement, if it "ought" to be placed, it may per Re P (Placement Order: Parents' Consent). b. A child can be placed WITH parents' consent under s19 ACA. At this stage, the parent may give advanced consent to adoption under s20 ACA. c. Alternatively, where the Court authorises the Local Authority to place the child for adoption under a Care Order, parents consent, or their consent is dispensed with per s21. d. As below, dispensing with consent is dealt with under s52 ACA which states that only where (i) mental health or (ii) It is REQUIRED (Strong word noted by Wall LJ in Re P) Child's best interests. So again use Re P (Placement Order: Parents' Consent) - It is not "enhanced welfare test" to accommodate parents, but they can still be considered under s1(4)(c)-(f). e. Note there is no duty to disclose to fathers and others without PR in the child's interests per Re C (Adoption: Duty of Local Authority ).
3. Is the adoptive couple okay?
a. Who can apply? Couples under s50 ACA or single people under s51 ACA b. Qualifying Period? Under s42 ACA an adoption order MAY NOT be made unless the child has lived with the parties for the requisite period. If done through an agency, this is 10 weeks per s42(2). If partner of parent it is 6 months per s42(3), if Local Authority foster parents it is 1 year per s42(4) and others such as extended family it is 5 years per s42(5) ACA. Shorter for agency as vetted so much that 'perfect parents'. i. Note s42(2) refers to PLACED for adoption - Thus either voluntarily (with consent under s19) or with placement order under s21. c. Trans-Racial Adopting? Miles states advocates on both sides are dogmatic. Goldstein states children become psychologically lost. While Haynes says too much focus is upon upholding the "community" and it is the carer not their race that matters. Moffatt and Patel note there have been very successful placements, but no reported failures. In Re M (Child's Upbringing) a child was returned to Zulu mother after living with white woman for 10 years; while in Re N (Transracial Placement) there was no 21
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