Partner adoption allows you to become the legal parent of your partner’s child or children from a previous marriage or relationship.
You need to contact us if you want to adopt your spouse’s or partner’s child. You must do this at least three months before applying to a court for an adoption order. The child must also have lived with both of you for at least six months.
We’ll then send you a leaflet which highlights the issues involved with step-parent adoption, and explain the alternatives and the step-parent adoption assessment process.
Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service provides useful information and advice for children and their families.
Adopting a family member
It’s our aim to return all children to the care of their birth parents but if this is not an option then family and friends may provide care that is the next best thing.
If the child you’d like to care for or adopt is currently in care, please contact us. If the child is not in care you can apply directly to the court for a Residence Order, Special Guardianship Order or an Adoption Order.
Remember – you can only apply to adopt if you are a close relative of the child or a connected person.
The process is generally the same as domestic adoption, however, there are likely to be extra complexities when adopting from abroad and some charges may be made for the additional work carried out.
For more information please contact us.
Fostering for adoption
Fostering for adoption is a process where we place a child with foster carers who are also approved as adopters while the child is in temporary local authority care.
If the court agrees that the child should be adopted and the adoption agency approves the ‘match’ between the foster carers and the child, the placement becomes an adoption placement.
It gives the child as much stability as can be given at the earliest possible stage.
As foster carer you will be under the direct supervision of the local authority so you’ll need to consider whether this is something you’ll be comfortable with.
It is highly likely that you will go on to adopt the child but you’ll need to consider how you will deal with the possibility of the court not agreeing the adoption plan and the child leaving your care.
If you are interested in fostering to adopt please contact us.
Concurrency, or concurrent planning, is for babies and young children under two in care who are likely to need adoption, but may still have a chance of being reunited with their birth family.
Concurrent carers care for a child while the courts decide whether or not they can return to their birth family. During this time the child will need to see their parents regularly and the concurrent carers will need to support the birth family’s efforts to regain the care of their child.
If the courts decide that the birth parents have shown they can be reliable, able and loving parents, the children will be returned to their care. The concurrent carers will have the satisfaction of knowing that they have given these children the best possible start in life.
However, if the courts decide that the child’s parents cannot provide the security and care they need, and there are no alternative carers, the child will remain with their concurrent carer/s and be adopted by them.
If you are interested in becoming a concurrent carer please contact us.