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E+W+S

Adoption and Children Act 2002

2002 CHAPTER 38

An Act to restate and amend the law relating to adoption; to make further amendments of the law relating to children; to amend section 93 of the Local Government Act 2000; and for connected purposes.

[7th November 2002]

Be it enacted by the Queen’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

Prospective

Part 1 E+W+SAdoption

Chapter 1 E+W+S+N.I.Introductory

1 Considerations applying to the exercise of powersE+W

(1)This section applies whenever a court or adoption agency is coming to a decision relating to the adoption of a child.

(2)The paramount consideration of the court or adoption agency must be the child’s welfare, throughout his life.

(3)The court or adoption agency must at all times bear in mind that, in general, any delay in coming to the decision is likely to prejudice the child’s welfare.

(4)The court or adoption agency must have regard to the following matters (among others)—

(a)the child’s ascertainable wishes and feelings regarding the decision (considered in the light of the child’s age and understanding),

(b)the child’s particular needs,

(c)the likely effect on the child (throughout his life) of having ceased to be a member of the original family and become an adopted person,

(d)the child’s age, sex, background and any of the child’s characteristics which the court or agency considers relevant,

(e)any harm (within the meaning of the Children Act 1989 (c. 41)) which the child has suffered or is at risk of suffering,

(f)the relationship which the child has with relatives, and with any other person in relation to whom the court or agency considers the relationship to be relevant, including—

(i)the likelihood of any such relationship continuing and the value to the child of its doing so,

(ii)the ability and willingness of any of the child’s relatives, or of any such person, to provide the child with a secure environment in which the child can develop, and otherwise to meet the child’s needs,

(iii)the wishes and feelings of any of the child’s relatives, or of any such person, regarding the child.

(5)In placing the child for adoption, the adoption agency must give due consideration to the child’s religious persuasion, racial origin and cultural and linguistic background.

(6)The court or adoption agency must always consider the whole range of powers available to it in the child’s case (whether under this Act or the Children Act 1989); and the court must not make any order under this Act unless it considers that making the order would be better for the child than not doing so.

(7)In this section, “coming to a decision relating to the adoption of a child”, in relation to a court, includes—

(a)coming to a decision in any proceedings where the orders that might be made by the court include an adoption order (or the revocation of such an order), a placement order (or the revocation of such an order) or an order under section 26 (or the revocation or variation of such an order),

(b)coming to a decision about granting leave in respect of any action (other than the initiation of proceedings in any court) which may be taken by an adoption agency or individual under this Act,

but does not include coming to a decision about granting leave in any other circumstances.

(8)For the purposes of this section—

(a)references to relationships are not confined to legal relationships,

(b)references to a relative, in relation to a child, include the child’s mother and father.

Chapter 2 E+W+S+N.I.The Adoption Service

The Adoption ServiceE+W+S+N.I.

2 Basic definitionsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The services maintained by local authorities under section 3(1) may be collectively referred to as “the Adoption Service”, and a local authority or registered adoption society may be referred to as an adoption agency.

(2)In this Act, “registered adoption society” means a voluntary organisation which is an adoption society registered under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14); but in relation to the provision of any facility of the Adoption Service, references to a registered adoption society or to an adoption agency do not include an adoption society which is not registered in respect of that facility.

(3)A registered adoption society is to be treated as registered in respect of any facility of the Adoption Service unless it is a condition of its registration that it does not provide that facility.

(4)No application for registration under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 may be made in respect of an adoption society which is an unincorporated body.

(5)In this Act—

  • the 1989 Act” means the Children Act 1989 (c. 41),

  • adoption society” means a body whose functions consist of or include making arrangements for the adoption of children,

  • voluntary organisation” means a body other than a public or local authority the activities of which are not carried on for profit.

(6)In this Act, “adoption support services” means—

(a)counselling, advice and information, and

(b)any other services prescribed by regulations,

in relation to adoption.

(7)The power to make regulations under subsection (6)(b) is to be exercised so as to secure that local authorities provide financial support.

(8)In this Chapter, references to adoption are to the adoption of persons, wherever they may be habitually resident, effected under the law of any country or territory, whether within or outside the British Islands.

3 Maintenance of Adoption ServiceE+W

(1)Each local authority must continue to maintain within their area a service designed to meet the needs, in relation to adoption, of—

(a)children who may be adopted, their parents and guardians,

(b)persons wishing to adopt a child, and

(c)adopted persons, their parents, natural parents and former guardians;

and for that purpose must provide the requisite facilities.

(2)Those facilities must include making, and participating in, arrangements—

(a)for the adoption of children, and

(b)for the provision of adoption support services.

(3)As part of the service, the arrangements made for the purposes of subsection (2)(b)—

(a)must extend to the provision of adoption support services to persons who are within a description prescribed by regulations,

(b)may extend to the provision of those services to other persons.

(4)A local authority may provide any of the requisite facilities by securing their provision by—

(a)registered adoption societies, or

(b)other persons who are within a description prescribed by regulations of persons who may provide the facilities in question.

(5)The facilities of the service must be provided in conjunction with the local authority’s other social services and with registered adoption societies in their area, so that help may be given in a co-ordinated manner without duplication, omission or avoidable delay.

(6)The social services referred to in subsection (5) are the functions of a local authority which are social services functions within the meaning of the Local Authority Social Services Act 1970 (c. 42) (which include, in particular, those functions in so far as they relate to children).

4 Assessments etc. for adoption support servicesE+W

(1)A local authority must at the request of—

(a)any of the persons mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (c) of section 3(1), or

(b)any other person who falls within a description prescribed by regulations (subject to subsection (7)(a)),

carry out an assessment of that person’s needs for adoption support services.

(2)A local authority may, at the request of any person, carry out an assessment of that person’s needs for adoption support services.

(3)A local authority may request the help of the persons mentioned in paragraph (a) or (b) of section 3(4) in carrying out an assessment.

(4)Where, as a result of an assessment, a local authority decide that a person has needs for adoption support services, they must then decide whether to provide any such services to that person.

(5)If—

(a)a local authority decide to provide any adoption support services to a person, and

(b)the circumstances fall within a description prescribed by regulations,

the local authority must prepare a plan in accordance with which adoption support services are to be provided to the person and keep the plan under review.

(6)Regulations may make provision about assessments, preparing and reviewing plans, the provision of adoption support services in accordance with plans and reviewing the provision of adoption support services.

(7)The regulations may in particular make provision—

(a)as to the circumstances in which a person mentioned in paragraph (b) of subsection (1) is to have a right to request an assessment of his needs in accordance with that subsection,

(b)about the type of assessment which, or the way in which an assessment, is to be carried out,

(c)about the way in which a plan is to be prepared,

(d)about the way in which, and time at which, a plan or the provision of adoption support services is to be reviewed,

(e)about the considerations to which a local authority are to have regard in carrying out an assessment or review or preparing a plan,

(f)as to the circumstances in which a local authority may provide adoption support services subject to conditions,

(g)as to the consequences of conditions imposed by virtue of paragraph (f) not being met (including the recovery of any financial support provided by a local authority),

(h)as to the circumstances in which this section may apply to a local authority in respect of persons who are outside that local authority’s area,

(i)as to the circumstances in which a local authority may recover from another local authority the expenses of providing adoption support services to any person.

(8)A local authority may carry out an assessment of the needs of any person under this section at the same time as an assessment of his needs is made under any other enactment.

(9)If at any time during the assessment of the needs of any person under this section, it appears to a local authority that—

(a)there may be a need for the provision of services to that person by a Primary Care Trust (in Wales, a Health Authority or Local Health Board), or

(b)there may be a need for the provision to him of any services which fall within the functions of a local education authority (within the meaning of the Education Act 1996 (c. 56)),

the local authority must notify that Primary Care Trust, Health Authority, Local Health Board or local education authority.

(10)Where it appears to a local authority that another local authority could, by taking any specified action, help in the exercise of any of their functions under this section, they may request the help of that other local authority, specifying the action in question.

(11)A local authority whose help is so requested must comply with the request if it is consistent with the exercise of their functions.

5 Local authority plans for adoption servicesE+W

(1)Each local authority must prepare a plan for the provision of the services maintained under section 3(1) and secure that it is published.

(2)The plan must contain information of a description prescribed by regulations (subject to subsection (4)(b)).

(3)The regulations may make provision requiring local authorities—

(a)to review any plan,

(b)in the circumstances prescribed by the regulations, to modify that plan and secure its publication or to prepare a plan in substitution for that plan and secure its publication.

(4)The appropriate Minister may direct—

(a)that a plan is to be included in another document specified in the direction,

(b)that the requirements specified in the direction as to the description of information to be contained in a plan are to have effect in place of the provision made by regulations under subsection (2).

(5)Directions may be given by the appropriate Minister for the purpose of making provision in connection with any duty imposed by virtue of this section including, in particular, provision as to—

(a)the form and manner in which, and the time at which, any plan is to be published,

(b)the description of persons who are to be consulted in the preparation of any plan,

(c)the time at which any plan is to be reviewed.

(6)Subsections (2) to (5) apply in relation to a modified or substituted plan (or further modified or substituted plan) as they apply in relation to a plan prepared under subsection (1).

(7)Directions given under this section may relate—

(a)to a particular local authority,

(b)to any class or description of local authorities, or

(c)except in the case of a direction given under subsection (4)(b), to local authorities generally,

and accordingly different provision may be made in relation to different local authorities or classes or descriptions of local authorities.

6 Arrangements on cancellation of registrationE+W

Where, by virtue of the cancellation of its registration under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14), a body has ceased to be a registered adoption society, the appropriate Minister may direct the body to make such arrangements as to the transfer of its functions relating to children and other transitional matters as seem to him expedient.

7 Inactive or defunct adoption societies etc.E+W

(1)This section applies where it appears to the appropriate Minister that—

(a)a body which is or has been a registered adoption society is inactive or defunct, or

(b)a body which has ceased to be a registered adoption society by virtue of the cancellation of its registration under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 has not made such arrangements for the transfer of its functions relating to children as are specified in a direction given by him.

(2)The appropriate Minister may, in relation to such functions of the society as relate to children, direct what appears to him to be the appropriate local authority to take any such action as might have been taken by the society or by the society jointly with the authority.

(3)A local authority are entitled to take any action which—

(a)apart from this subsection the authority would not be entitled to take, or would not be entitled to take without joining the society in the action, but

(b)they are directed to take under subsection (2).

(4)The appropriate Minister may charge the society for expenses necessarily incurred by him or on his behalf in securing the transfer of its functions relating to children.

(5)Before giving a direction under subsection (2) the appropriate Minister must, if practicable, consult both the society and the authority.

8 Adoption support agenciesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In this Act, “adoption support agency” means an undertaking the purpose of which, or one of the purposes of which, is the provision of adoption support services; but an undertaking is not an adoption support agency—

(a)merely because it provides information in connection with adoption other than for the purpose mentioned in section 98(1), or

(b)if it is excepted by virtue of subsection (2).

Undertaking” has the same meaning as in the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14).

(2)The following are excepted—

(a)a registered adoption society, whether or not the society is registered in respect of the provision of adoption support services,

(b)a local authority,

(c)a local education authority (within the meaning of the Education Act 1996 (c. 56)),

(d)a Special Health Authority, Primary Care Trust (in Wales, a Health Authority or Local Health Board) or NHS trust,

(e)the Registrar General,

(f)any person, or description of persons, excepted by regulations.

(3)In section 4 of the Care Standards Act 2000 (basic definitions)—

(a)after subsection (7) there is inserted—

(7A)Adoption support agency” has the meaning given by section 8 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002.,

(b)in subsection (9)(a) (construction of references to descriptions of agencies), for “or a voluntary adoption agency” there is substituted “ a voluntary adoption agency or an adoption support agency ”.

RegulationsE+W+S+N.I.

9 General power to regulate adoption etc. agenciesE+W

(1)Regulations may make provision for any purpose relating to—

(a)the exercise by local authorities or voluntary adoption agencies of their functions in relation to adoption, or

(b)the exercise by adoption support agencies of their functions in relation to adoption.

(2)The extent of the power to make regulations under this section is not limited by sections 10 to 12, 45, 54, 56 to 65 and 98 or by any other powers exercisable in respect of local authorities, voluntary adoption agencies or adoption support agencies.

(3)Regulations may provide that a person who contravenes or fails to comply with any provision of regulations under this section is to be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale.

(4)In this section and section 10, “voluntary adoption agency” means a voluntary organisation which is an adoption society.

10 Management etc. of agenciesE+W

(1)In relation to local authorities, voluntary adoption agencies and adoption support agencies, regulations under section 9 may make provision as to—

(a)the persons who are fit to work for them for the purposes of the functions mentioned in section 9(1),

(b)the fitness of premises,

(c)the management and control of their operations,

(d)the number of persons, or persons of any particular type, working for the purposes of those functions,

(e)the management and training of persons working for the purposes of those functions,

(f)the keeping of information.

(2)Regulations made by virtue of subsection (1)(a) may, in particular, make provision for prohibiting persons from working in prescribed positions unless they are registered in, or in a particular part of, one of the registers maintained under section 56(1) of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14) (registration of social care workers).

(3)In relation to voluntary adoption agencies and adoption support agencies, regulations under section 9 may—

(a)make provision as to the persons who are fit to manage an agency, including provision prohibiting persons from doing so unless they are registered in, or in a particular part of, one of the registers referred to in subsection (2),

(b)impose requirements as to the financial position of an agency,

(c)make provision requiring the appointment of a manager,

(d)in the case of a voluntary adoption agency, make provision for securing the welfare of children placed by the agency, including provision as to the promotion and protection of their health,

(e)in the case of an adoption support agency, make provision as to the persons who are fit to carry on the agency.

(4)Regulations under section 9 may make provision as to the conduct of voluntary adoption agencies and adoption support agencies, and may in particular make provision—

(a)as to the facilities and services to be provided by an agency,

(b)as to the keeping of accounts,

(c)as to the notification to the registration authority of events occurring in premises used for the purposes of an agency,

(d)as to the giving of notice to the registration authority of periods during which the manager of an agency proposes to be absent, and specifying the information to be given in such a notice,

(e)as to the making of adequate arrangements for the running of an agency during a period when its manager is absent,

(f)as to the giving of notice to the registration authority of any intended change in the identity of the manager,

(g)as to the giving of notice to the registration authority of changes in the ownership of an agency or the identity of its officers,

(h)requiring the payment of a prescribed fee to the registration authority in respect of any notification required to be made by virtue of paragraph (g),

(i)requiring arrangements to be made for dealing with complaints made by or on behalf of those seeking, or receiving, any of the services provided by an agency and requiring the agency or manager to take steps for publicising the arrangements.

11 FeesE+W

(1)Regulations under section 9 may prescribe—

(a)the fees which may be charged by adoption agencies in respect of the provision of services to persons providing facilities as part of the Adoption Service (including the Adoption Services in Scotland and Northern Ireland),

(b)the fees which may be paid by adoption agencies to persons providing or assisting in providing such facilities.

(2)Regulations under section 9 may prescribe the fees which may be charged by local authorities in respect of the provision of prescribed facilities of the Adoption Service where the following conditions are met.

(3)The conditions are that the facilities are provided in connection with—

(a)the adoption of a child brought into the United Kingdom for the purpose of adoption, or

(b)a Convention adoption, an overseas adoption or an adoption effected under the law of a country or territory outside the British Islands.

(4)Regulations under section 9 may prescribe the fees which may be charged by adoption agencies in respect of the provision of counselling, where the counselling is provided in connection with the disclosure of information in relation to a person’s adoption.

12 Independent review of determinationsE+W

(1)Regulations under section 9 may establish a procedure under which any person in respect of whom a qualifying determination has been made by an adoption agency may apply to a panel constituted by the appropriate Minister for a review of that determination.

(2)The regulations must make provision as to the description of determinations which are qualifying determinations for the purposes of subsection (1).

(3)The regulations may include provision as to—

(a)the duties and powers of a panel (including the power to recover the costs of a review from the adoption agency by which the determination reviewed was made),

(b)the administration and procedures of a panel,

(c)the appointment of members of a panel (including the number, or any limit on the number, of members who may be appointed and any conditions for appointment),

(d)the payment of expenses of members of a panel,

(e)the duties of adoption agencies in connection with reviews conducted under the regulations,

(f)the monitoring of any such reviews.

(4)The appropriate Minister may make an arrangement with an organisation under which functions in relation to the panel are performed by the organisation on his behalf.

(5)If the appropriate Minister makes such an arrangement with an organisation, the organisation is to perform its functions under the arrangement in accordance with any general or special directions given by the appropriate Minister.

(6)The arrangement may include provision for payments to be made to the organisation by the appropriate Minister.

(7)Where the appropriate Minister is the Assembly, subsections (4) and (6) also apply as if references to an organisation included references to the Secretary of State.

(8)In this section, “organisation” includes a public body and a private or voluntary organisation.

SupplementalE+W+S+N.I.

13 Information concerning adoptionE+W

(1)Each adoption agency must give to the appropriate Minister any statistical or other general information he requires about—

(a)its performance of all or any of its functions relating to adoption,

(b)the children and other persons in relation to whom it has exercised those functions.

(2)The following persons—

(a)the justices’ chief executive for each magistrates’ court,

(b)the relevant officer of each county court,

(c)the relevant officer of the High Court,

must give to the appropriate Minister any statistical or other general information he requires about the proceedings under this Act of the court in question.

(3)In subsection (2), “relevant officer”, in relation to a county court or the High Court, means the officer of that court who is designated to act for the purposes of that subsection by a direction given by the Lord Chancellor.

(4)The information required to be given to the appropriate Minister under this section must be given at the times, and in the form, directed by him.

(5)The appropriate Minister may publish from time to time abstracts of the information given to him under this section.

14 Default power of appropriate MinisterE+W

(1)If the appropriate Minister is satisfied that any local authority have failed, without reasonable excuse, to comply with any of the duties imposed on them by virtue of this Act or of section 1 or 2(4) of the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999 (c. 18), he may make an order declaring that authority to be in default in respect of that duty.

(2)An order under subsection (1) must give the appropriate Minister’s reasons for making it.

(3)An order under subsection (1) may contain such directions as appear to the appropriate Minister to be necessary for the purpose of ensuring that, within the period specified in the order, the duty is complied with.

(4)Any such directions are enforceable, on the appropriate Minister’s application, by a mandatory order.

15 Inspection of premises etc.E+W

(1)The appropriate Minister may arrange for any premises in which—

(a)a child is living with a person with whom the child has been placed by an adoption agency, or

(b)a child in respect of whom a notice of intention to adopt has been given under section 44 is, or will be, living,

to be inspected from time to time.

(2)The appropriate Minister may require an adoption agency—

(a)to give him any information, or

(b)to allow him to inspect any records (in whatever form they are held),

relating to the discharge of any of its functions in relation to adoption which the appropriate Minister specifies.

(3)An inspection under this section must be conducted by a person authorised by the appropriate Minister.

(4)An officer of a local authority may only be so authorised with the consent of the authority.

(5)A person inspecting any premises under subsection (1) may—

(a)visit the child there,

(b)make any examination into the state of the premises and the treatment of the child there which he thinks fit.

(6)A person authorised to inspect any records under this section may at any reasonable time have access to, and inspect and check the operation of, any computer (and associated apparatus) which is being or has been used in connection with the records in question.

(7)A person authorised to inspect any premises or records under this section may—

(a)enter the premises for that purpose at any reasonable time,

(b)require any person to give him any reasonable assistance he may require.

(8)A person exercising a power under this section must, if required to do so, produce a duly authenticated document showing his authority.

(9)Any person who intentionally obstructs another in the exercise of a power under this section is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.

16 Distribution of functions in relation to registered adoption societiesE+W+S+N.I.

After section 36 of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14) there is inserted—

36A Voluntary adoption agencies: distribution of functions

(1)This section applies to functions relating to voluntary adoption agencies conferred on the registration authority by or under this Part or under Chapter 2 of Part 1 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002.

(2)Subject to the following provisions, functions to which this section applies are exercisable—

(a)where the principal office of an agency is in England, by the Commission,

(b)where the principal office of an agency is in Wales, by the Assembly.

(3)So far as those functions relate to the imposition, variation or removal of conditions of registration, they may only be exercised after consultation with the Assembly or (as the case may be) the Commission.

(4)But—

(a)where such a function as is mentioned in subsection (3) is exercisable by the Commission in relation to an agency which has a branch in Wales, it is exercisable only with the agreement of the Assembly,

(b)where such a function as is mentioned in subsection (3) is exercisable by the Assembly in relation to an agency which has a branch in England, it is exercisable only with the agreement of the Commission.

(5)The functions conferred on the registration authority by sections 31 and 32 of this Act in respect of any premises of a voluntary adoption agency are exercisable—

(a)where the premises are in England, by the Commission

(b)where the premises are in Wales, by the Assembly.

(6)In spite of subsections (2) to (5), regulations may provide for any function to which this section applies to be exercisable by the Commission instead of the Assembly, or by the Assembly instead of the Commission, or by one concurrently with the other, or by both jointly or by either with the agreement of or after consultation with the other.

(7)In this section, “regulations” means regulations relating to England and Wales.

17 InquiriesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The appropriate Minister may cause an inquiry to be held into any matter connected with the functions of an adoption agency.

(2)Before an inquiry is begun, the appropriate Minister may direct that it is to be held in private.

(3)Where no direction has been given, the person holding the inquiry may if he thinks fit hold it, or any part of it, in private.

(4)Subsections (2) to (5) of section 250 of the Local Government Act 1972 (c. 70) (powers in relation to local inquiries) apply in relation to an inquiry under this section as they apply in relation to a local inquiry under that section.

Chapter 3 E+W+SPlacement for adoption and adoption orders

Placement of children by adoption agency for adoptionE+W+S

18 Placement for adoption by agenciesE+W

(1)An adoption agency may—

(a)place a child for adoption with prospective adopters, or

(b)where it has placed a child with any persons (whether under this Part or not), leave the child with them as prospective adopters,

but, except in the case of a child who is less than six weeks old, may only do so under section 19 or a placement order.

(2)An adoption agency may only place a child for adoption with prospective adopters if the agency is satisfied that the child ought to be placed for adoption.

(3)A child who is placed or authorised to be placed for adoption with prospective adopters by a local authority is looked after by the authority.

(4)If an application for an adoption order has been made by any persons in respect of a child and has not been disposed of—

(a)an adoption agency which placed the child with those persons may leave the child with them until the application is disposed of, but

(b)apart from that, the child may not be placed for adoption with any prospective adopters.

Adoption order” includes a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order.

(5)References in this Act (apart from this section) to an adoption agency placing a child for adoption—

(a)are to its placing a child for adoption with prospective adopters, and

(b)include, where it has placed a child with any persons (whether under this Act or not), leaving the child with them as prospective adopters;

and references in this Act (apart from this section) to a child who is placed for adoption by an adoption agency are to be interpreted accordingly.

(6)References in this Chapter to an adoption agency being, or not being, authorised to place a child for adoption are to the agency being or (as the case may be) not being authorised to do so under section 19 or a placement order.

(7)This section is subject to sections 30 to 35 (removal of children placed by adoption agencies).

19 Placing children with parental consentE+W

(1)Where an adoption agency is satisfied that each parent or guardian of a child has consented to the child—

(a)being placed for adoption with prospective adopters identified in the consent, or

(b)being placed for adoption with any prospective adopters who may be chosen by the agency,

and has not withdrawn the consent, the agency is authorised to place the child for adoption accordingly.

(2)Consent to a child being placed for adoption with prospective adopters identified in the consent may be combined with consent to the child subsequently being placed for adoption with any prospective adopters who may be chosen by the agency in circumstances where the child is removed from or returned by the identified prospective adopters.

(3)Subsection (1) does not apply where–

(a)an application has been made on which a care order might be made and the application has not been disposed of, or

(b)a care order or placement order has been made after the consent was given.

(4)References in this Act to a child placed for adoption under this section include a child who was placed under this section with prospective adopters and continues to be placed with them, whether or not consent to the placement has been withdrawn.

(5)This section is subject to section 52 (parental etc. consent).

20 Advance consent to adoptionE+W

(1)A parent or guardian of a child who consents to the child being placed for adoption by an adoption agency under section 19 may, at the same or any subsequent time, consent to the making of a future adoption order.

(2)Consent under this section—

(a)where the parent or guardian has consented to the child being placed for adoption with prospective adopters identified in the consent, may be consent to adoption by them, or

(b)may be consent to adoption by any prospective adopters who may be chosen by the agency.

(3)A person may withdraw any consent given under this section.

(4)A person who gives consent under this section may, at the same or any subsequent time, by notice given to the adoption agency—

(a)state that he does not wish to be informed of any application for an adoption order, or

(b)withdraw such a statement.

(5)A notice under subsection (4) has effect from the time when it is received by the adoption agency but has no effect if the person concerned has withdrawn his consent.

(6)This section is subject to section 52 (parental etc. consent).

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1S. 20 restricted (prosp.) by 1978 (c. 28), s. 16 (3D) (b) (as inserted (prosp.) by Adoption and Children Act 2002 (c. 38), ss. 139, 148, Sch. 3 para. 23(b)) (with Sch. 4 paras. 6-8)

21 Placement ordersE+W

(1)A placement order is an order made by the court authorising a local authority to place a child for adoption with any prospective adopters who may be chosen by the authority.

(2)The court may not make a placement order in respect of a child unless—

(a)the child is subject to a care order,

(b)the court is satisfied that the conditions in section 31(2) of the 1989 Act (conditions for making a care order) are met, or

(c)the child has no parent or guardian.

(3)The court may only make a placement order if, in the case of each parent or guardian of the child, the court is satisfied—

(a)that the parent or guardian has consented to the child being placed for adoption with any prospective adopters who may be chosen by the local authority and has not withdrawn the consent, or

(b)that the parent’s or guardian’s consent should be dispensed with.

This subsection is subject to section 52 (parental etc. consent).

(4)A placement order continues in force until—

(a)it is revoked under section 24,

(b)an adoption order is made in respect of the child, or

(c)the child marries or attains the age of 18 years.

Adoption order” includes a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order.

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C2S. 21 restricted (prosp.) by 1978 (c.28), s.16(3D)(a)(ii) (as inserted (prosp.) by Adoption and Children Act 2002 (c. 38), ss. 139, 148, Sch 3 para. 23(b)) (with Sch. 4 paras. 6-8)

22 Applications for placement ordersE+W

(1)A local authority must apply to the court for a placement order in respect of a child if—

(a)the child is placed for adoption by them or is being provided with accommodation by them,

(b)no adoption agency is authorised to place the child for adoption,

(c)the child has no parent or guardian or the authority consider that the conditions in section 31(2) of the 1989 Act are met, and

(d)the authority are satisfied that the child ought to be placed for adoption.

(2)If—

(a)an application has been made (and has not been disposed of) on which a care order might be made in respect of a child, or

(b)a child is subject to a care order and the appropriate local authority are not authorised to place the child for adoption,

the appropriate local authority must apply to the court for a placement order if they are satisfied that the child ought to be placed for adoption.

(3)If—

(a)a child is subject to a care order, and

(b)the appropriate local authority are authorised to place the child for adoption under section 19,

the authority may apply to the court for a placement order.

(4)If a local authority—

(a)are under a duty to apply to the court for a placement order in respect of a child, or

(b)have applied for a placement order in respect of a child and the application has not been disposed of,

the child is looked after by the authority.

(5)Subsections (1) to (3) do not apply in respect of a child—

(a)if any persons have given notice of intention to adopt, unless the period of four months beginning with the giving of the notice has expired without them applying for an adoption order or their application for such an order has been withdrawn or refused, or

(b)if an application for an adoption order has been made and has not been disposed of.

Adoption order” includes a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order.

(6)Where—

(a)an application for a placement order in respect of a child has been made and has not been disposed of, and

(b)no interim care order is in force,

the court may give any directions it considers appropriate for the medical or psychiatric examination or other assessment of the child; but a child who is of sufficient understanding to make an informed decision may refuse to submit to the examination or other assessment.

(7)The appropriate local authority—

(a)in relation to a care order, is the local authority in whose care the child is placed by the order, and

(b)in relation to an application on which a care order might be made, is the local authority which makes the application.

23 Varying placement ordersE+W

(1)The court may vary a placement order so as to substitute another local authority for the local authority authorised by the order to place the child for adoption.

(2)The variation may only be made on the joint application of both authorities.

24 Revoking placement ordersE+W

(1)The court may revoke a placement order on the application of any person.

(2)But an application may not be made by a person other than the child or the local authority authorised by the order to place the child for adoption unless—

(a)the court has given leave to apply, and

(b)the child is not placed for adoption by the authority.

(3)The court cannot give leave under subsection (2)(a) unless satisfied that there has been a change in circumstances since the order was made.

(4)If the court determines, on an application for an adoption order, not to make the order, it may revoke any placement order in respect of the child.

(5)Where—

(a)an application for the revocation of a placement order has been made and has not been disposed of, and

(b)the child is not placed for adoption by the authority,

the child may not without the court’s leave be placed for adoption under the order.

25 Parental responsibilityE+W+S

(1)This section applies while—

(a)a child is placed for adoption under section 19 or an adoption agency is authorised to place a child for adoption under that section, or

(b)a placement order is in force in respect of a child.

(2)Parental responsibility for the child is given to the agency concerned.

(3)While the child is placed with prospective adopters, parental responsibility is given to them.

(4)The agency may determine that the parental responsibility of any parent or guardian, or of prospective adopters, is to be restricted to the extent specified in the determination.

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C3S. 25 extended to S. (with mods) (prosp.) by 1978 (c. 28), s. 53B (as inserted by Adoption and Children Act 2002 (c. 38), ss. 139, 148 {Sch. 3 para. 30} (with Sch. 4 paras. 6-8)

26 ContactE+W

(1)On an adoption agency being authorised to place a child for adoption, or placing a child for adoption who is less than six weeks old, any provision for contact under the 1989 Act ceases to have effect.

(2)While an adoption agency is so authorised or a child is placed for adoption—

(a)no application may be made for any provision for contact under that Act, but

(b)the court may make an order under this section requiring the person with whom the child lives, or is to live, to allow the child to visit or stay with the person named in the order, or for the person named in the order and the child otherwise to have contact with each other.

(3)An application for an order under this section may be made by—

(a)the child or the agency,

(b)any parent, guardian or relative,

(c)any person in whose favour there was provision for contact under the 1989 Act which ceased to have effect by virtue of subsection (1),

(d)if a residence order was in force immediately before the adoption agency was authorised to place the child for adoption or (as the case may be) placed the child for adoption at a time when he was less than six weeks old, the person in whose favour the order was made,

(e)if a person had care of the child immediately before that time by virtue of an order made in the exercise of the High Court’s inherent jurisdiction with respect to children, that person,

(f)any person who has obtained the court’s leave to make the application.

(4)When making a placement order, the court may on its own initiative make an order under this section.

(5)This section does not prevent an application for a contact order under section 8 of the 1989 Act being made where the application is to be heard together with an application for an adoption order in respect of the child.

(6)In this section, “provision for contact under the 1989 Act” means a contact order under section 8 of that Act or an order under section 34 of that Act (parental contact with children in care).

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C4S. 26 restricted (prosp.) by 1986 (c. 55) s. 2(2B) (as inserted by Adoption and Children Act 2002 (c. 38), ss. 139, 148 {Sch. 3 para. 48} (with Sch. 4 paras. 6-8)

27 Contact: supplementaryE+W

(1)An order under section 26—

(a)has effect while the adoption agency is authorised to place the child for adoption or the child is placed for adoption, but

(b)may be varied or revoked by the court on an application by the child, the agency or a person named in the order.

(2)The agency may refuse to allow the contact that would otherwise be required by virtue of an order under that section if—

(a)it is satisfied that it is necessary to do so in order to safeguard or promote the child’s welfare, and

(b)the refusal is decided upon as a matter of urgency and does not last for more than seven days.

(3)Regulations may make provision as to—

(a)the steps to be taken by an agency which has exercised its power under subsection (2),

(b)the circumstances in which, and conditions subject to which, the terms of any order under section 26 may be departed from by agreement between the agency and any person for whose contact with the child the order provides,

(c)notification by an agency of any variation or suspension of arrangements made (otherwise than under an order under that section) with a view to allowing any person contact with the child.

(4)Before making a placement order the court must—

(a)consider the arrangements which the adoption agency has made, or proposes to make, for allowing any person contact with the child, and

(b)invite the parties to the proceedings to comment on those arrangements.

(5)An order under section 26 may provide for contact on any conditions the court considers appropriate.

28 Further consequences of placementE+W+S

(1)Where a child is placed for adoption under section 19 or an adoption agency is authorised to place a child for adoption under that section—

(a)a parent or guardian of the child may not apply for a residence order unless an application for an adoption order has been made and the parent or guardian has obtained the court’s leave under subsection (3) or (5) of section 47,

(b)if an application has been made for an adoption order, a guardian of the child may not apply for a special guardianship order unless he has obtained the court’s leave under subsection (3) or (5) of that section.

(2)Where—

(a)a child is placed for adoption under section 19 or an adoption agency is authorised to place a child for adoption under that section, or

(b)a placement order is in force in respect of a child,

then (whether or not the child is in England and Wales) a person may not do either of the following things, unless the court gives leave or each parent or guardian of the child gives written consent.

(3)Those things are—

(a)causing the child to be known by a new surname, or

(b)removing the child from the United Kingdom.

(4)Subsection (3) does not prevent the removal of a child from the United Kingdom for a period of less than one month by a person who provides the child’s home.

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C5S. 28(2)-(4) extended to S. (with mods) by 1978 (c. 28), s. 53B (as inserted by Adoption and Children Act 2002 (c. 38), ss. 139, 148 {Sch. 3 para. 30} (with Sch. 4 paras. 6-8)

C6S. 28(2)-(4) extended to S. (with mods) by 1978 (c. 28), s. 53B (as inserted by Adoption and Children Act 2002 (c. 38), ss. 139, 148 {Sch. 3 para. 30} (with Sch. 4 paras. 6-8)

C7S. 28(2)-(4) extended to S. (with mods) by 1978 (c. 28), s. 53B (as inserted by Adoption and Children Act 2002 (c. 38), ss. 139, 148 {Sch. 3 para. 30} (with Sch. 4 paras. 6-8)

29 Further consequences of placement ordersE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Where a placement order is made in respect of a child and either—

(a)the child is subject to a care order, or

(b)the court at the same time makes a care order in respect of the child,

the care order does not have effect at any time when the placement order is in force.

(2)On the making of a placement order in respect of a child, any order mentioned in section 8(1) of the 1989 Act, and any supervision order in respect of the child, ceases to have effect.

(3)Where a placement order is in force—

(a)no prohibited steps order, residence order or specific issue order, and

(b)no supervision order or child assessment order,

may be made in respect of the child.

(4)Subsection (3)(a) does not apply in respect of a residence order if—

(a)an application for an adoption order has been made in respect of the child, and

(b)the residence order is applied for by a parent or guardian who has obtained the court’s leave under subsection (3) or (5) of section 47 or by any other person who has obtained the court’s leave under this subsection.

(5)Where a placement order is in force, no special guardianship order may be made in respect of the child unless—

(a)an application has been made for an adoption order, and

(b)the person applying for the special guardianship order has obtained the court’s leave under this subsection or, if he is a guardian of the child, has obtained the court’s leave under section 47(5).

(6)Section 14A(7) of the 1989 Act applies in respect of an application for a special guardianship order for which leave has been given as mentioned in subsection (5)(b) with the omission of the words “the beginning of the period of three months ending with”.

(7)Where a placement order is in force—

(a)section 14C(1)(b) of the 1989 Act (special guardianship: parental responsibility) has effect subject to any determination under section 25(4) of this Act,

(b)section 14C(3) and (4) of the 1989 Act (special guardianship: removal of child from UK etc.) does not apply.

Removal of children who are or may be placed by adoption agenciesE+W+S+N.I.

30 General prohibitions on removalE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Where—

(a)a child is placed for adoption by an adoption agency under section 19, or

(b)a child is placed for adoption by an adoption agency and either the child is less than six weeks old or the agency has at no time been authorised to place the child for adoption,

a person (other than the agency) must not remove the child from the prospective adopters.

(2)Where—

(a)a child who is not for the time being placed for adoption is being provided with accommodation by a local authority, and

(b)the authority have applied to the court for a placement order and the application has not been disposed of,

only a person who has the court’s leave (or the authority) may remove the child from the accommodation.

(3)Where subsection (2) does not apply, but—

(a)a child who is not for the time being placed for adoption is being provided with accommodation by an adoption agency, and

(b)the agency is authorised to place the child for adoption under section 19 or would be so authorised if any consent to placement under that section had not been withdrawn,

a person (other than the agency) must not remove the child from the accommodation.

(4)This section is subject to sections 31 to 33 but those sections do not apply if the child is subject to a care order.

(5)This group of sections (that is, this section and those sections) apply whether or not the child in question is in England and Wales.

(6)This group of sections does not affect the exercise by any local authority or other person of any power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act (removal of children from local authority accommodation).

(7)This group of sections does not prevent the removal of a child who is arrested.

(8)A person who removes a child in contravention of this section is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

31 Recovery by parent etc. where child not placed or is a babyE+W

(1)Subsection (2) applies where—

(a)a child who is not for the time being placed for adoption is being provided with accommodation by an adoption agency, and

(b)the agency would be authorised to place the child for adoption under section 19 if consent to placement under that section had not been withdrawn.

(2)If any parent or guardian of the child informs the agency that he wishes the child to be returned to him, the agency must return the child to him within the period of seven days beginning with the request unless an application is, or has been, made for a placement order and the application has not been disposed of.

(3)Subsection (4) applies where—

(a)a child is placed for adoption by an adoption agency and either the child is less than six weeks old or the agency has at no time been authorised to place the child for adoption, and

(b)any parent or guardian of the child informs the agency that he wishes the child to be returned to him,

unless an application is, or has been, made for a placement order and the application has not been disposed of.

(4)The agency must give notice of the parent’s or guardian’s wish to the prospective adopters who must return the child to the agency within the period of seven days beginning with the day on which the notice is given.

(5)A prospective adopter who fails to comply with subsection (4) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(6)As soon as a child is returned to an adoption agency under subsection (4), the agency must return the child to the parent or guardian in question.

32 Recovery by parent etc. where child placed and consent withdrawnE+W

(1)This section applies where—

(a)a child is placed for adoption by an adoption agency under section 19, and

(b)consent to placement under that section has been withdrawn,

unless an application is, or has been, made for a placement order and the application has not been disposed of.

(2)If a parent or guardian of the child informs the agency that he wishes the child to be returned to him—

(a)the agency must give notice of the parent’s or guardian’s wish to the prospective adopters, and

(b)the prospective adopters must return the child to the agency within the period of 14 days beginning with the day on which the notice is given.

(3)A prospective adopter who fails to comply with subsection (2)(b) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(4)As soon as a child is returned to an adoption agency under this section, the agency must return the child to the parent or guardian in question.

(5)Where a notice under subsection (2) is given, but—

(a)before the notice was given, an application for an adoption order (including a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order), special guardianship order or residence order, or for leave to apply for a special guardianship order or residence order, was made in respect of the child, and

(b)the application (and, in a case where leave is given on an application to apply for a special guardianship order or residence order, the application for the order) has not been disposed of,

the prospective adopters are not required by virtue of the notice to return the child to the agency unless the court so orders.

33 Recovery by parent etc. where child placed and placement order refusedE+W

(1)This section applies where—

(a)a child is placed for adoption by a local authority under section 19,

(b)the authority have applied for a placement order and the application has been refused, and

(c)any parent or guardian of the child informs the authority that he wishes the child to be returned to him.

(2)The prospective adopters must return the child to the authority on a date determined by the court.

(3)A prospective adopter who fails to comply with subsection (2) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(4)As soon as a child is returned to the authority, they must return the child to the parent or guardian in question.

34 Placement orders: prohibition on removalE+W

(1)Where a placement order in respect of a child—

(a)is in force, or

(b)has been revoked, but the child has not been returned by the prospective adopters or remains in any accommodation provided by the local authority,

a person (other than the local authority) may not remove the child from the prospective adopters or from accommodation provided by the authority.

(2)A person who removes a child in contravention of subsection (1) is guilty of an offence.

(3)Where a court revoking a placement order in respect of a child determines that the child is not to remain with any former prospective adopters with whom the child is placed, they must return the child to the local authority within the period determined by the court for the purpose; and a person who fails to do so is guilty of an offence.

(4)Where a court revoking a placement order in respect of a child determines that the child is to be returned to a parent or guardian, the local authority must return the child to the parent or guardian as soon as the child is returned to the authority or, where the child is in accommodation provided by the authority, at once.

(5)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(6)This section does not affect the exercise by any local authority or other person of a power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act.

(7)This section does not prevent the removal of a child who is arrested.

(8)This section applies whether or not the child in question is in England and Wales.

35 Return of child in other casesE+W

(1)Where a child is placed for adoption by an adoption agency and the prospective adopters give notice to the agency of their wish to return the child, the agency must—

(a)receive the child from the prospective adopters before the end of the period of seven days beginning with the giving of the notice, and

(b)give notice to any parent or guardian of the child of the prospective adopters’ wish to return the child.

(2)Where a child is placed for adoption by an adoption agency, and the agency—

(a)is of the opinion that the child should not remain with the prospective adopters, and

(b)gives notice to them of its opinion,

the prospective adopters must, not later than the end of the period of seven days beginning with the giving of the notice, return the child to the agency.

(3)If the agency gives notice under subsection (2)(b), it must give notice to any parent or guardian of the child of the obligation to return the child to the agency.

(4)A prospective adopter who fails to comply with subsection (2) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(5)Where—

(a)an adoption agency gives notice under subsection (2) in respect of a child,

(b)before the notice was given, an application for an adoption order (including a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order), special guardianship order or residence order, or for leave to apply for a special guardianship order or residence order, was made in respect of the child, and

(c)the application (and, in a case where leave is given on an application to apply for a special guardianship order or residence order, the application for the order) has not been disposed of,

prospective adopters are not required by virtue of the notice to return the child to the agency unless the court so orders.

(6)This section applies whether or not the child in question is in England and Wales.

Removal of children in non-agency casesE+W+S+N.I.

36 Restrictions on removalE+W

(1)At any time when a child’s home is with any persons (“the people concerned”) with whom the child is not placed by an adoption agency, but the people concerned—

(a)have applied for an adoption order in respect of the child and the application has not been disposed of,

(b)have given notice of intention to adopt, or

(c)have applied for leave to apply for an adoption order under section 42(6) and the application has not been disposed of,

a person may remove the child only in accordance with the provisions of this group of sections (that is, this section and sections 37 to 40).

The reference to a child placed by an adoption agency includes a child placed by a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption agency.

(2)For the purposes of this group of sections, a notice of intention to adopt is to be disregarded if—

(a)the period of four months beginning with the giving of the notice has expired without the people concerned applying for an adoption order, or

(b)the notice is a second or subsequent notice of intention to adopt and was given during the period of five months beginning with the giving of the preceding notice.

(3)For the purposes of this group of sections, if the people concerned apply for leave to apply for an adoption order under section 42(6) and the leave is granted, the application for leave is not to be treated as disposed of until the period of three days beginning with the granting of the leave has expired.

(4)This section does not prevent the removal of a child who is arrested.

(5)Where a parent or guardian may remove a child from the people concerned in accordance with the provisions of this group of sections, the people concerned must at the request of the parent or guardian return the child to the parent or guardian at once.

(6)A person who—

(a)fails to comply with subsection (5), or

(b)removes a child in contravention of this section,

is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(7)This group of sections applies whether or not the child in question is in England and Wales.

37 Applicants for adoptionE+W

If section 36(1)(a) applies, the following persons may remove the child—

(a)a person who has the court’s leave,

(b)a local authority or other person in the exercise of a power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act.

38 Local authority foster parentsE+W

(1)This section applies if the child’s home is with local authority foster parents.

(2)If—

(a)the child has had his home with the foster parents at all times during the period of five years ending with the removal and the foster parents have given notice of intention to adopt, or

(b)an application has been made for leave under section 42(6) and has not been disposed of,

the following persons may remove the child.

(3)They are—

(a)a person who has the court’s leave,

(b)a local authority or other person in the exercise of a power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act.

(4)If subsection (2) does not apply but—

(a)the child has had his home with the foster parents at all times during the period of one year ending with the removal, and

(b)the foster parents have given notice of intention to adopt,

the following persons may remove the child.

(5)They are—

(a)a person with parental responsibility for the child who is exercising the power in section 20(8) of the 1989 Act,

(b)a person who has the court’s leave,

(c)a local authority or other person in the exercise of a power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act.

39 Partners of parentsE+W

(1)This section applies if a child’s home is with a partner of a parent and the partner has given notice of intention to adopt.

(2)If the child’s home has been with the partner for not less than three years (whether continuous or not) during the period of five years ending with the removal, the following persons may remove the child—

(a)a person who has the court’s leave,

(b)a local authority or other person in the exercise of a power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act.

(3)If subsection (2) does not apply, the following persons may remove the child—

(a)a parent or guardian,

(b)a person who has the court’s leave,

(c)a local authority or other person in the exercise of a power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act.

40 Other non-agency casesE+W

(1)In any case where sections 37 to 39 do not apply but—

(a)the people concerned have given notice of intention to adopt, or

(b)the people concerned have applied for leave under section 42(6) and the application has not been disposed of,

the following persons may remove the child.

(2)They are—

(a)a person who has the court’s leave,

(b)a local authority or other person in the exercise of a power conferred by any enactment, other than section 20(8) of the 1989 Act.

Breach of restrictions on removalE+W+S+N.I.

41 Recovery ordersE+W+S

(1)This section applies where it appears to the court—

(a)that a child has been removed in contravention of any of the preceding provisions of this Chapter or that there are reasonable grounds for believing that a person intends to remove a child in contravention of those provisions, or

(b)that a person has failed to comply with section 31(4), 32(2), 33(2), 34(3) or 35(2).

(2)The court may, on the application of any person, by an order—

(a)direct any person who is in a position to do so to produce the child on request to any person mentioned in subsection (4),

(b)authorise the removal of the child by any person mentioned in that subsection,

(c)require any person who has information as to the child’s whereabouts to disclose that information on request to any constable or officer of the court,

(d)authorise a constable to enter any premises specified in the order and search for the child, using reasonable force if necessary.

(3)Premises may only be specified under subsection (2)(d) if it appears to the court that there are reasonable grounds for believing the child to be on them.

(4)The persons referred to in subsection (2) are—

(a)any person named by the court,

(b)any constable,

(c)any person who, after the order is made under that subsection, is authorised to exercise any power under the order by an adoption agency which is authorised to place the child for adoption.

(5)A person who intentionally obstructs a person exercising a power of removal conferred by the order is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.

(6)A person must comply with a request to disclose information as required by the order even if the information sought might constitute evidence that he had committed an offence.

(7)But in criminal proceedings in which the person is charged with an offence (other than one mentioned in subsection (8))—

(a)no evidence relating to the information provided may be adduced, and

(b)no question relating to the information may be asked,

by or on behalf of the prosecution, unless evidence relating to it is adduced, or a question relating to it is asked, in the proceedings by or on behalf of the person.

(8)The offences excluded from subsection (7) are—

(a)an offence under section 2 or 5 of the Perjury Act 1911 (c. 6) (false statements made on oath otherwise than in judicial proceedings or made otherwise than on oath),

(b)an offence under section 44(1) or (2) of the Criminal Law (Consolidation) (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 39) (false statements made on oath or otherwise than on oath).

(9)An order under this section has effect in relation to Scotland as if it were an order made by the Court of Session which that court had jurisdiction to make.

Preliminaries to adoptionE+W+S+N.I.

42 Child to live with adopters before applicationE+W

(1)An application for an adoption order may not be made unless—

(a)if subsection (2) applies, the condition in that subsection is met,

(b)if that subsection does not apply, the condition in whichever is applicable of subsections (3) to (5) applies.

(2)If —

(a)the child was placed for adoption with the applicant or applicants by an adoption agency or in pursuance of an order of the High Court, or

(b)the applicant is a parent of the child,

the condition is that the child must have had his home with the applicant or, in the case of an application by a couple, with one or both of them at all times during the period of ten weeks preceding the application.

(3)If the applicant or one of the applicants is the partner of a parent of the child, the condition is that the child must have had his home with the applicant or, as the case may be, applicants at all times during the period of six months preceding the application.

(4)If the applicants are local authority foster parents, the condition is that the child must have had his home with the applicants at all times during the period of one year preceding the application.

(5)In any other case, the condition is that the child must have had his home with the applicant or, in the case of an application by a couple, with one or both of them for not less than three years (whether continuous or not) during the period of five years preceding the application.

(6)But subsections (4) and (5) do not prevent an application being made if the court gives leave to make it.

(7)An adoption order may not be made unless the court is satisfied that sufficient opportunities to see the child with the applicant or, in the case of an application by a couple, both of them together in the home environment have been given—

(a)where the child was placed for adoption with the applicant or applicants by an adoption agency, to that agency,

(b)in any other case, to the local authority within whose area the home is.

(8)In this section and sections 43 and 44(1)—

(a)references to an adoption agency include a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption agency,

(b)references to a child placed for adoption by an adoption agency are to be read accordingly.

43 Reports where child placed by agencyE+W

Where an application for an adoption order relates to a child placed for adoption by an adoption agency, the agency must—

(a)submit to the court a report on the suitability of the applicants and on any other matters relevant to the operation of section 1, and

(b)assist the court in any manner the court directs.

44 Notice of intention to adoptE+W

(1)This section applies where persons (referred to in this section as “proposed adopters”) wish to adopt a child who is not placed for adoption with them by an adoption agency.

(2)An adoption order may not be made in respect of the child unless the proposed adopters have given notice to the appropriate local authority of their intention to apply for the adoption order (referred to in this Act as a “notice of intention to adopt”).

(3)The notice must be given not more than two years, or less than three months, before the date on which the application for the adoption order is made.

(4)Where—

(a)if a person were seeking to apply for an adoption order, subsection (4) or (5) of section 42 would apply, but

(b)the condition in the subsection in question is not met,

the person may not give notice of intention to adopt unless he has the court’s leave to apply for an adoption order.

(5)On receipt of a notice of intention to adopt, the local authority must arrange for the investigation of the matter and submit to the court a report of the investigation.

(6)In particular, the investigation must, so far as practicable, include the suitability of the proposed adopters and any other matters relevant to the operation of section 1 in relation to the application.

(7)If a local authority receive a notice of intention to adopt in respect of a child whom they know was (immediately before the notice was given) looked after by another local authority, they must, not more than seven days after the receipt of the notice, inform the other local authority in writing that they have received the notice.

(8)Where—

(a)a local authority have placed a child with any persons otherwise than as prospective adopters, and

(b)the persons give notice of intention to adopt,

the authority are not to be treated as leaving the child with them as prospective adopters for the purposes of section 18(1)(b).

(9)In this section, references to the appropriate local authority, in relation to any proposed adopters, are—

(a)in prescribed cases, references to the prescribed local authority,

(b)in any other case, references to the local authority for the area in which, at the time of giving the notice of intention to adopt, they have their home,

and “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations.

45 Suitability of adoptersE+W

(1)Regulations under section 9 may make provision as to the matters to be taken into account by an adoption agency in determining, or making any report in respect of, the suitability of any persons to adopt a child.

(2)In particular, the regulations may make provision for the purpose of securing that, in determining the suitability of a couple to adopt a child, proper regard is had to the need for stability and permanence in their relationship.

The making of adoption ordersE+W+S+N.I.

46 Adoption ordersE+W

(1)An adoption order is an order made by the court on an application under section 50 or 51 giving parental responsibility for a child to the adopters or adopter.

(2)The making of an adoption order operates to extinguish—

(a)the parental responsibility which any person other than the adopters or adopter has for the adopted child immediately before the making of the order,

(b)any order under the 1989 Act or the Children (Northern Ireland) Order 1995 (S.I. 1995/755 (N.I. 2)),

(c)any order under the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 36) other than an excepted order, and

(d)any duty arising by virtue of an agreement or an order of a court to make payments, so far as the payments are in respect of the adopted child’s maintenance or upbringing for any period after the making of the adoption order.

Excepted order” means an order under section 9, 11(1)(d) or 13 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 or an exclusion order within the meaning of section 76(1) of that Act.

(3)An adoption order—

(a)does not affect parental responsibility so far as it relates to any period before the making of the order, and

(b)in the case of an order made on an application under section 51(2) by the partner of a parent of the adopted child, does not affect the parental responsibility of that parent or any duties of that parent within subsection (2)(d).

(4)Subsection (2)(d) does not apply to a duty arising by virtue of an agreement—

(a)which constitutes a trust, or

(b)which expressly provides that the duty is not to be extinguished by the making of an adoption order.

(5)An adoption order may be made even if the child to be adopted is already an adopted child.

(6)Before making an adoption order, the court must consider whether there should be arrangements for allowing any person contact with the child; and for that purpose the court must consider any existing or proposed arrangements and obtain any views of the parties to the proceedings.

47 Conditions for making adoption ordersE+W

(1)An adoption order may not be made if the child has a parent or guardian unless one of the following three conditions is met; but this section is subject to section 52 (parental etc. consent).

(2)The first condition is that, in the case of each parent or guardian of the child, the court is satisfied—

(a)that the parent or guardian consents to the making of the adoption order,

(b)that the parent or guardian has consented under section 20 (and has not withdrawn the consent) and does not oppose the making of the adoption order, or

(c)that the parent’s or guardian’s consent should be dispensed with.

(3)A parent or guardian may not oppose the making of an adoption order under subsection (2)(b) without the court’s leave.

(4)The second condition is that—

(a)the child has been placed for adoption by an adoption agency with the prospective adopters in whose favour the order is proposed to be made,

(b)either—

(i)the child was placed for adoption with the consent of each parent or guardian and the consent of the mother was given when the child was at least six weeks old, or

(ii)the child was placed for adoption under a placement order, and

(c)no parent or guardian opposes the making of the adoption order.

(5)A parent or guardian may not oppose the making of an adoption order under the second condition without the court’s leave.

(6)The third condition is that the child is free for adoption by virtue of an order made—

(a)in Scotland, under section 18 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28), or

(b)in Northern Ireland, under Article 17(1) or 18(1) of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)).

(7)The court cannot give leave under subsection (3) or (5) unless satisfied that there has been a change in circumstances since the consent of the parent or guardian was given or, as the case may be, the placement order was made.

(8)An adoption order may not be made in relation to a person who is or has been married.

(9)An adoption order may not be made in relation to a person who has attained the age of 19 years.

48 Restrictions on making adoption ordersE+W

(1)The court may not hear an application for an adoption order in relation to a child, where a previous application to which subsection (2) applies made in relation to the child by the same persons was refused by any court, unless it appears to the court that, because of a change in circumstances or for any other reason, it is proper to hear the application.

(2)This subsection applies to any application—

(a)for an adoption order or a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order, or

(b)for an order for adoption made in the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands.

49 Applications for adoptionE+W

(1)An application for an adoption order may be made by—

(a)a couple, or

(b)one person,

but only if it is made under section 50 or 51 and one of the following conditions is met.

(2)The first condition is that at least one of the couple (in the case of an application under section 50) or the applicant (in the case of an application under section 51) is domiciled in a part of the British Islands.

(3)The second condition is that both of the couple (in the case of an application under section 50) or the applicant (in the case of an application under section 51) have been habitually resident in a part of the British Islands for a period of not less than one year ending with the date of the application.

(4)An application for an adoption order may only be made if the person to be adopted has not attained the age of 18 years on the date of the application.

(5)References in this Act to a child, in connection with any proceedings (whether or not concluded) for adoption, (such as “child to be adopted” or “adopted child”) include a person who has attained the age of 18 years before the proceedings are concluded.

50 Adoption by coupleE+W

(1)An adoption order may be made on the application of a couple where both of them have attained the age of 21 years.

(2)An adoption order may be made on the application of a couple where—

(a)one of the couple is the mother or the father of the person to be adopted and has attained the age of 18 years, and

(b)the other has attained the age of 21 years.

51 Adoption by one personE+W

(1)An adoption order may be made on the application of one person who has attained the age of 21 years and is not married.

(2)An adoption order may be made on the application of one person who has attained the age of 21 years if the court is satisfied that the person is the partner of a parent of the person to be adopted.

(3)An adoption order may be made on the application of one person who has attained the age of 21 years and is married if the court is satisfied that—

(a)the person’s spouse cannot be found,

(b)the spouses have separated and are living apart, and the separation is likely to be permanent, or

(c)the person’s spouse is by reason of ill-health, whether physical or mental, incapable of making an application for an adoption order.

(4)An adoption order may not be made on an application under this section by the mother or the father of the person to be adopted unless the court is satisfied that—

(a)the other natural parent is dead or cannot be found,

(b)by virtue of section 28 of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 (c. 37), there is no other parent, or

(c)there is some other reason justifying the child’s being adopted by the applicant alone,

and, where the court makes an adoption order on such an application, the court must record that it is satisfied as to the fact mentioned in paragraph (a) or (b) or, in the case of paragraph (c), record the reason.

Placement and adoption: generalE+W+S+N.I.

52 Parental etc. consentE+W

(1)The court cannot dispense with the consent of any parent or guardian of a child to the child being placed for adoption or to the making of an adoption order in respect of the child unless the court is satisfied that—

(a)the parent or guardian cannot be found or is incapable of giving consent, or

(b)the welfare of the child requires the consent to be dispensed with.

(2)The following provisions apply to references in this Chapter to any parent or guardian of a child giving or withdrawing—

(a)consent to the placement of a child for adoption, or

(b)consent to the making of an adoption order (including a future adoption order).

(3)Any consent given by the mother to the making of an adoption order is ineffective if it is given less than six weeks after the child’s birth.

(4)The withdrawal of any consent to the placement of a child for adoption, or of any consent given under section 20, is ineffective if it is given after an application for an adoption order is made.

(5)Consent” means consent given unconditionally and with full understanding of what is involved; but a person may consent to adoption without knowing the identity of the persons in whose favour the order will be made.

(6)Parent” (except in subsections (9) and (10) below) means a parent having parental responsibility.

(7)Consent under section 19 or 20 must be given in the form prescribed by rules, and the rules may prescribe forms in which a person giving consent under any other provision of this Part may do so (if he wishes).

(8)Consent given under section 19 or 20 must be withdrawn—

(a)in the form prescribed by rules, or

(b)by notice given to the agency.

(9)Subsection (10) applies if—

(a)an agency has placed a child for adoption under section 19 in pursuance of consent given by a parent of the child, and

(b)at a later time, the other parent of the child acquires parental responsibility for the child.

(10)The other parent is to be treated as having at that time given consent in accordance with this section in the same terms as those in which the first parent gave consent.

53 Modification of 1989 Act in relation to adoptionE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Where—

(a)a local authority are authorised to place a child for adoption, or

(b)a child who has been placed for adoption by a local authority is less than six weeks old,

regulations may provide for the following provisions of the 1989 Act to apply with modifications, or not to apply, in relation to the child.

(2)The provisions are—

(a)section 22(4)(b), (c) and (d) and (5)(b) (duty to ascertain wishes and feelings of certain persons),

(b)paragraphs 15 and 21 of Schedule 2 (promoting contact with parents and parents’ obligation to contribute towards maintenance).

(3)Where a registered adoption society is authorised to place a child for adoption or a child who has been placed for adoption by a registered adoption society is less than six weeks old, regulations may provide—

(a)for section 61 of that Act to have effect in relation to the child whether or not he is accommodated by or on behalf of the society,

(b)for subsections (2)(b) to (d) and (3)(b) of that section (duty to ascertain wishes and feelings of certain persons) to apply with modifications, or not to apply, in relation to the child.

(4)Where a child’s home is with persons who have given notice of intention to adopt, no contribution is payable (whether under a contribution order or otherwise) under Part 3 of Schedule 2 to that Act (contributions towards maintenance of children looked after by local authorities) in respect of the period referred to in subsection (5).

(5)That period begins when the notice of intention to adopt is given and ends if—

(a)the period of four months beginning with the giving of the notice expires without the prospective adopters applying for an adoption order, or

(b)an application for such an order is withdrawn or refused.

(6)In this section, “notice of intention to adopt” includes notice of intention to apply for a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order.

54 Disclosing information during adoption processE+W

Regulations under section 9 may require adoption agencies in prescribed circumstances to disclose in accordance with the regulations prescribed information to prospective adopters.

55 Revocation of adoptions on legitimationE+W

(1)Where any child adopted by one natural parent as sole adoptive parent subsequently becomes a legitimated person on the marriage of the natural parents, the court by which the adoption order was made may, on the application of any of the parties concerned, revoke the order.

(2)In relation to an adoption order made by a magistrates’ court, the reference in subsection (1) to the court by which the order was made includes a court acting for the same petty sessions area.

Disclosure of information in relation to a person’s adoptionE+W+S+N.I.

56 Information to be kept about a person’s adoptionE+W

(1)In relation to an adopted person, regulations may prescribe—

(a)the information which an adoption agency must keep in relation to his adoption,

(b)the form and manner in which it must keep that information.

(2)Below in this group of sections (that is, this section and sections 57 to 65), any information kept by an adoption agency by virtue of subsection (1)(a) is referred to as section 56 information.

(3)Regulations may provide for the transfer in prescribed circumstances of information held, or previously held, by an adoption agency to another adoption agency.

57 Restrictions on disclosure of protected etc. informationE+W

(1)Any section 56 information kept by an adoption agency which—

(a)is about an adopted person or any other person, and

(b)is or includes identifying information about the person in question,

may only be disclosed by the agency to a person (other than the person the information is about) in pursuance of this group of sections.

(2)Any information kept by an adoption agency—

(a)which the agency has obtained from the Registrar General on an application under section 79(5) and any other information which would enable the adopted person to obtain a certified copy of the record of his birth, or

(b)which is information about an entry relating to the adopted person in the Adoption Contact Register,

may only be disclosed to a person by the agency in pursuance of this group of sections.

(3)In this group of sections, information the disclosure of which to a person is restricted by virtue of subsection (1) or (2) is referred to (in relation to him) as protected information.

(4)Identifying information about a person means information which, whether taken on its own or together with other information disclosed by an adoption agency, identifies the person or enables the person to be identified.

(5)This section does not prevent the disclosure of protected information in pursuance of a prescribed agreement to which the adoption agency is a party.

(6)Regulations may authorise or require an adoption agency to disclose protected information to a person who is not an adopted person.

58 Disclosure of other informationE+W

(1)This section applies to any section 56 information other than protected information.

(2)An adoption agency may for the purposes of its functions disclose to any person in accordance with prescribed arrangements any information to which this section applies.

(3)An adoption agency must, in prescribed circumstances, disclose prescribed information to a prescribed person.

59 OffenceE+W

Regulations may provide that a registered adoption society which discloses any information in contravention of section 57 is to be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale.

60 Disclosing information to adopted adultE+W

(1)This section applies to an adopted person who has attained the age of 18 years.

(2)The adopted person has the right, at his request, to receive from the appropriate adoption agency—

(a)any information which would enable him to obtain a certified copy of the record of his birth, unless the High Court orders otherwise,

(b)any prescribed information disclosed to the adopters by the agency by virtue of section 54.

(3)The High Court may make an order under subsection (2)(a), on an application by the appropriate adoption agency, if satisfied that the circumstances are exceptional.

(4)The adopted person also has the right, at his request, to receive from the court which made the adoption order a copy of any prescribed document or prescribed order relating to the adoption.

(5)Subsection (4) does not apply to a document or order so far as it contains information which is protected information.

61 Disclosing protected information about adultsE+W

(1)This section applies where—

(a)a person applies to the appropriate adoption agency for protected information to be disclosed to him, and

(b)none of the information is about a person who is a child at the time of the application.

(2)The agency is not required to proceed with the application unless it considers it appropriate to do so.

(3)If the agency does proceed with the application it must take all reasonable steps to obtain the views of any person the information is about as to the disclosure of the information about him.

(4)The agency may then disclose the information if it considers it appropriate to do so.

(5)In deciding whether it is appropriate to proceed with the application or disclose the information, the agency must consider—

(a)the welfare of the adopted person,

(b)any views obtained under subsection (3),

(c)any prescribed matters,

and all the other circumstances of the case.

(6)This section does not apply to a request for information under section 60(2) or to a request for information which the agency is authorised or required to disclose in pursuance of regulations made by virtue of section 57(6).

62 Disclosing protected information about childrenE+W

(1)This section applies where—

(a)a person applies to the appropriate adoption agency for protected information to be disclosed to him, and

(b)any of the information is about a person who is a child at the time of the application.

(2)The agency is not required to proceed with the application unless it considers it appropriate to do so.

(3)If the agency does proceed with the application, then, so far as the information is about a person who is at the time a child, the agency must take all reasonable steps to obtain—

(a)the views of any parent or guardian of the child, and

(b)the views of the child, if the agency considers it appropriate to do so having regard to his age and understanding and to all the other circumstances of the case,

as to the disclosure of the information.

(4)And, so far as the information is about a person who has at the time attained the age of 18 years, the agency must take all reasonable steps to obtain his views as to the disclosure of the information.

(5)The agency may then disclose the information if it considers it appropriate to do so.

(6)In deciding whether it is appropriate to proceed with the application, or disclose the information, where any of the information is about a person who is at the time a child—

(a)if the child is an adopted child, the child’s welfare must be the paramount consideration,

(b)in the case of any other child, the agency must have particular regard to the child’s welfare.

(7)And, in deciding whether it is appropriate to proceed with the application or disclose the information, the agency must consider—

(a)the welfare of the adopted person (where subsection (6)(a) does not apply),

(b)any views obtained under subsection (3) or (4),

(c)any prescribed matters,

and all the other circumstances of the case.

(8)This section does not apply to a request for information under section 60(2) or to a request for information which the agency is authorised or required to disclose in pursuance of regulations made by virtue of section 57(6).

63 CounsellingE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Regulations may require adoption agencies to give information about the availability of counselling to persons—

(a)seeking information from them in pursuance of this group of sections,

(b)considering objecting or consenting to the disclosure of information by the agency in pursuance of this group of sections, or

(c)considering entering with the agency into an agreement prescribed for the purposes of section 57(5).

(2)Regulations may require adoption agencies to make arrangements to secure the provision of counselling for persons seeking information from them in prescribed circumstances in pursuance of this group of sections.

(3)The regulations may authorise adoption agencies—

(a)to disclose information which is required for the purposes of such counselling to the persons providing the counselling,

(b)where the person providing the counselling is outside the United Kingdom, to require a prescribed fee to be paid.

(4)The regulations may require any of the following persons to provide counselling for the purposes of arrangements under subsection (2)—

(a)a local authority, a council constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act 1994 (c. 39) or a Health and Social Services Board established under Article 16 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1972 (S.I. 1972/1265 (N.I. 14)),

(b)a registered adoption society, an organisation within section 144(3)(b) or an adoption society which is registered under Article 4 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)),

(c)an adoption support agency in respect of which a person is registered under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14).

(5)For the purposes of subsection (4), where the functions of a Health and Social Services Board are exercisable by a Health and Social Services Trust, the reference in sub-paragraph (a) to a Board is to be read as a reference to the Health and Social Services Trust.

64 Other provision to be made by regulationsE+W

(1)Regulations may make provision for the purposes of this group of sections, including provision as to—

(a)the performance by adoption agencies of their functions,

(b)the manner in which information may be received, and

(c)the matters mentioned below in this section.

(2)Regulations may prescribe—

(a)the manner in which agreements made by virtue of section 57(5) are to be recorded,

(b)the information to be provided by any person on an application for the disclosure of information under this group of sections.

(3)Regulations may require adoption agencies—

(a)to give to prescribed persons prescribed information about the rights or opportunities to obtain information, or to give their views as to its disclosure, given by this group of sections,

(b)to seek prescribed information from, or give prescribed information to, the Registrar General in prescribed circumstances.

(4)Regulations may require the Registrar General—

(a)to disclose to any person (including an adopted person) at his request any information which the person requires to assist him to make contact with the adoption agency which is the appropriate adoption agency in the case of an adopted person specified in the request (or, as the case may be, in the applicant’s case),

(b)to disclose to the appropriate adoption agency any information which the agency requires about any entry relating to the adopted person on the Adoption Contact Register.

(5)Regulations may provide for the payment of a prescribed fee in respect of the disclosure in prescribed circumstances of any information in pursuance of section 60, 61 or 62; but an adopted person may not be required to pay any fee in respect of any information disclosed to him in relation to any person who (but for his adoption) would be related to him by blood (including half-blood) or marriage.

(6)Regulations may provide for the payment of a prescribed fee by an adoption agency obtaining information under subsection (4)(b).

65 Sections 56 to 65: interpretationE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In this group of sections—

  • appropriate adoption agency”, in relation to an adopted person or to information relating to his adoption, means—

    (a)

    if the person was placed for adoption by an adoption agency, that agency or (if different) the agency which keeps the information in relation to his adoption,

    (b)

    in any other case, the local authority to which notice of intention to adopt was given,

  • prescribed” means prescribed by subordinate legislation,

  • regulations” means regulations under section 9,

  • subordinate legislation” means regulations or, in relation to information to be given by a court, rules.

(2)But—

(a)regulations under section 63(2) imposing any requirement on a council constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act 1994 (c. 39), or an organisation within section 144(3)(b), are to be made by the Scottish Ministers,

(b)regulations under section 63(2) imposing any requirement on a Health and Social Services Board established under Article 16 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1972 (S.I. 1972/ 1265 (N.I. 14)), or an adoption society which is registered under Article 4 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)), are to be made by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety.

(3)The power of the Scottish Ministers or of the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety to make regulations under section 63(2) includes power to make—

(a)any supplementary, incidental or consequential provision,

(b)any transitory, transitional or saving provision,

which the person making the regulations considers necessary or expedient.

(4)Regulations prescribing any fee by virtue of section 64(6) require the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

(5)Regulations making any provision as to the manner in which any application is to be made for the disclosure of information by the Registrar General require his approval.

Chapter 4 E+W+S+N.I.Status of Adopted Children

66 Meaning of adoption in Chapter 4E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In this Chapter “adoption” means—

(a)adoption by an adoption order or a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption order,

(b)adoption by an order made in the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands,

(c)an adoption effected under the law of a Convention country outside the British Islands, and certified in pursuance of Article 23(1) of the Convention (referred to in this Act as a “Convention adoption”),

(d)an overseas adoption, or

(e)an adoption recognised by the law of England and Wales and effected under the law of any other country;

and related expressions are to be interpreted accordingly.

(2)But references in this Chapter to adoption do not include an adoption effected before the day on which this Chapter comes into force (referred to in this Chapter as “the appointed day”).

(3)Any reference in an enactment to an adopted person within the meaning of this Chapter includes a reference to an adopted child within the meaning of Part 4 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36).

67 Status conferred by adoptionE+W+S+N.I.

(1)An adopted person is to be treated in law as if born as the child of the adopters or adopter.

(2)An adopted person is the legitimate child of the adopters or adopter and, if adopted by—

(a)a couple, or

(b)one of a couple under section 51(2),

is to be treated as the child of the relationship of the couple in question.

(3)An adopted person—

(a)if adopted by one of a couple under section 51(2), is to be treated in law as not being the child of any person other than the adopter and the other one of the couple, and

(b)in any other case, is to be treated in law, subject to subsection (4), as not being the child of any person other than the adopters or adopter;

but this subsection does not affect any reference in this Act to a person’s natural parent or to any other natural relationship.

(4)In the case of a person adopted by one of the person’s natural parents as sole adoptive parent, subsection (3)(b) has no effect as respects entitlement to property depending on relationship to that parent, or as respects anything else depending on that relationship.

(5)This section has effect from the date of the adoption.

(6)Subject to the provisions of this Chapter and Schedule 4, this section—

(a)applies for the interpretation of enactments or instruments passed or made before as well as after the adoption, and so applies subject to any contrary indication, and

(b)has effect as respects things done, or events occurring, on or after the adoption.

68 Adoptive relativesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)A relationship existing by virtue of section 67 may be referred to as an adoptive relationship, and—

(a)an adopter may be referred to as an adoptive parent or (as the case may be) as an adoptive father or adoptive mother,

(b)any other relative of any degree under an adoptive relationship may be referred to as an adoptive relative of that degree.

(2)Subsection (1) does not affect the interpretation of any reference, not qualified by the word “adoptive”, to a relationship.

(3)A reference (however expressed) to the adoptive mother and father of a child adopted by—

(a)a couple of the same sex, or

(b)a partner of the child’s parent, where the couple are of the same sex,

is to be read as a reference to the child’s adoptive parents.

69 Rules of interpretation for instruments concerning propertyE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The rules of interpretation contained in this section apply (subject to any contrary indication and to Schedule 4) to any instrument so far as it contains a disposition of property.

(2)In applying section 67(1) and (2) to a disposition which depends on the date of birth of a child or children of the adoptive parent or parents, the disposition is to be interpreted as if—

(a)the adopted person had been born on the date of adoption,

(b)two or more people adopted on the same date had been born on that date in the order of their actual births;

but this does not affect any reference to a person’s age.

(3)Examples of phrases in wills on which subsection (2) can operate are—

  • 1. Children of A “living at my death or born afterwards”.

  • 2. Children of A “living at my death or born afterwards before any one of such children for the time being in existence attains a vested interest and who attain the age of 21 years”.

  • 3. As in example 1 or 2, but referring to grandchildren of A instead of children of A.

  • 4. A for life “until he has a child”, and then to his child or children.

  • Note. Subsection (2) will not affect the reference to the age of 21 years in example 2.

(4)Section 67(3) does not prejudice—

(a)any qualifying interest, or

(b)any interest expectant (whether immediately or not) upon a qualifying interest.

Qualifying interest” means an interest vested in possession in the adopted person before the adoption.

(5)Where it is necessary to determine for the purposes of a disposition of property effected by an instrument whether a woman can have a child—

(a)it must be presumed that once a woman has attained the age of 55 years she will not adopt a person after execution of the instrument, and

(b)if she does so, then (in spite of section 67) that person is not to be treated as her child or (if she does so as one of a couple) as the child of the other one of the couple for the purposes of the instrument.

(6)In this section, “instrument” includes a private Act settling property, but not any other enactment.

70 Dispositions depending on date of birthE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Where a disposition depends on the date of birth of a person who was born illegitimate and who is adopted by one of the natural parents as sole adoptive parent, section 69(2) does not affect entitlement by virtue of Part 3 of the Family Law Reform Act 1987 (c. 42) (dispositions of property).

(2)Subsection (1) applies for example where—

(a)a testator dies in 2001 bequeathing a legacy to his eldest grandchild living at a specified time,

(b)his unmarried daughter has a child in 2002 who is the first grandchild,

(c)his married son has a child in 2003,

(d)subsequently his unmarried daughter adopts her child as sole adoptive parent.

In that example the status of the daughter’s child as the eldest grandchild of the testator is not affected by the events described in paragraphs (c) and (d).

71 Property devolving with peerages etc.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)An adoption does not affect the descent of any peerage or dignity or title of honour.

(2)An adoption does not affect the devolution of any property limited (expressly or not) to devolve (as nearly as the law permits) along with any peerage or dignity or title of honour.

(3)Subsection (2) applies only if and so far as a contrary intention is not expressed in the instrument, and has effect subject to the terms of the instrument.

72 Protection of trustees and personal representativesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)A trustee or personal representative is not under a duty, by virtue of the law relating to trusts or the administration of estates, to enquire, before conveying or distributing any property, whether any adoption has been effected or revoked if that fact could affect entitlement to the property.

(2)A trustee or personal representative is not liable to any person by reason of a conveyance or distribution of the property made without regard to any such fact if he has not received notice of the fact before the conveyance or distribution.

(3)This section does not prejudice the right of a person to follow the property, or any property representing it, into the hands of another person, other than a purchaser, who has received it.

73 Meaning of dispositionE+W+S+N.I.

(1)This section applies for the purposes of this Chapter.

(2)A disposition includes the conferring of a power of appointment and any other disposition of an interest in or right over property; and in this subsection a power of appointment includes any discretionary power to transfer a beneficial interest in property without the furnishing of valuable consideration.

(3)This Chapter applies to an oral disposition as if contained in an instrument made when the disposition was made.

(4)The date of death of a testator is the date at which a will or codicil is to be regarded as made.

(5)The provisions of the law of intestate succession applicable to the estate of a deceased person are to be treated as if contained in an instrument executed by him (while of full capacity) immediately before his death.

74 Miscellaneous enactmentsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Section 67 does not apply for the purposes of—

(a)the table of kindred and affinity in Schedule 1 to the Marriage Act 1949 (c. 76),

(b)sections 10 and 11 of the Sexual Offences Act 1956 (c. 69) (incest), or

(c)section 54 of the Criminal Law Act 1977 (c. 45) (inciting a girl to commit incest).

(2)Section 67 does not apply for the purposes of any provision of—

(a)the British Nationality Act 1981 (c. 61),

(b)the Immigration Act 1971 (c. 77),

(c)any instrument having effect under an enactment within paragraph (a) or (b), or

(d)any other provision of the law for the time being in force which determines British citizenship, British overseas territories citizenship, the status of a British National (Overseas) or British Overseas citizenship.

75 PensionsE+W+S+N.I.

Section 67(3) does not affect entitlement to a pension which is payable to or for the benefit of a person and is in payment at the time of the person’s adoption.

76 InsuranceE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Where a child is adopted whose natural parent has effected an insurance with a friendly society or a collecting society or an industrial insurance company for the payment on the death of the child of money for funeral expenses, then—

(a)the rights and liabilities under the policy are by virtue of the adoption transferred to the adoptive parents, and

(b)for the purposes of the enactments relating to such societies and companies, the adoptive parents are to be treated as the person who took out the policy.

(2)Where the adoption is effected by an order made by virtue of section 51(2), the references in subsection (1) to the adoptive parents are to be read as references to the adopter and the other one of the couple.

Chapter 5 E+W+S+N.I.The Registers

Adopted Children Register etc.E+W

77 Adopted Children RegisterE+W

(1)The Registrar General must continue to maintain in the General Register Office a register, to be called the Adopted Children Register.

(2)The Adopted Children Register is not to be open to public inspection or search.

(3)No entries may be made in the Adopted Children Register other than entries—

(a)directed to be made in it by adoption orders, or

(b)required to be made under Schedule 1.

(4)A certified copy of an entry in the Adopted Children Register, if purporting to be sealed or stamped with the seal of the General Register Office, is to be received as evidence of the adoption to which it relates without further or other proof.

(5)Where an entry in the Adopted Children Register contains a record—

(a)of the date of birth of the adopted person, or

(b)of the country, or the district and sub-district, of the birth of the adopted person,

a certified copy of the entry is also to be received, without further or other proof, as evidence of that date, or country or district and sub-district, (as the case may be) in all respects as if the copy were a certified copy of an entry in the registers of live-births.

(6)Schedule 1 (registration of adoptions and the amendment of adoption orders) is to have effect.

78 Searches and copiesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The Registrar General must continue to maintain at the General Register Office an index of the Adopted Children Register.

(2)Any person may—

(a)search the index,

(b)have a certified copy of any entry in the Adopted Children Register.

(3)But a person is not entitled to have a certified copy of an entry in the Adopted Children Register relating to an adopted person who has not attained the age of 18 years unless the applicant has provided the Registrar General with the prescribed particulars.

Prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Registrar General with the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

(4)The terms, conditions and regulations as to payment of fees, and otherwise, applicable under the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (c. 20), and the Registration Service Act 1953 (c. 37), in respect of—

(a)searches in the index kept in the General Register Office of certified copies of entries in the registers of live-births,

(b)the supply from that office of certified copies of entries in those certified copies,

also apply in respect of searches, and supplies of certified copies, under subsection (2).

79 Connections between the register and birth recordsE+W

(1)The Registrar General must make traceable the connection between any entry in the registers of live-births or other records which has been marked “Adopted” and any corresponding entry in the Adopted Children Register.

(2)Information kept by the Registrar General for the purposes of subsection (1) is not to be open to public inspection or search.

(3)Any such information, and any other information which would enable an adopted person to obtain a certified copy of the record of his birth, may only be disclosed by the Registrar General in accordance with this section.

(4)In relation to a person adopted before the appointed day the court may, in exceptional circumstances, order the Registrar General to give any information mentioned in subsection (3) to a person.

(5)On an application made in the prescribed manner by the appropriate adoption agency in respect of an adopted person a record of whose birth is kept by the Registrar General, the Registrar General must give the agency any information relating to the adopted person which is mentioned in subsection (3).

Appropriate adoption agency” has the same meaning as in section 65.

(6)In relation to a person adopted before the appointed day, Schedule 2 applies instead of subsection (5).

(7)On an application made in the prescribed manner by an adopted person a record of whose birth is kept by the Registrar General and who—

(a)is under the age of 18 years, and

(b)intends to be married,

the Registrar General must inform the applicant whether or not it appears from information contained in the registers of live-births or other records that the applicant and the person whom the applicant intends to marry may be within the prohibited degrees of relationship for the purposes of the Marriage Act 1949 (c. 76).

(8)Before the Registrar General gives any information by virtue of this section, any prescribed fee which he has demanded must be paid.

(9)In this section—

  • appointed day” means the day appointed for the commencement of sections 56 to 65,

  • prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Registrar General with the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Adoption Contact RegisterE+W

80 Adoption Contact RegisterE+W

(1)The Registrar General must continue to maintain at the General Register Office in accordance with regulations a register in two Parts to be called the Adoption Contact Register.

(2)Part 1 of the register is to contain the prescribed information about adopted persons who have given the prescribed notice expressing their wishes as to making contact with their relatives.

(3)The Registrar General may only make an entry in Part 1 of the register for an adopted person—

(a)a record of whose birth is kept by the Registrar General,

(b)who has attained the age of 18 years, and

(c)who the Registrar General is satisfied has such information as is necessary to enable him to obtain a certified copy of the record of his birth.

(4)Part 2 of the register is to contain the prescribed information about persons who have given the prescribed notice expressing their wishes, as relatives of adopted persons, as to making contact with those persons.

(5)The Registrar General may only make an entry in Part 2 of the register for a person—

(a)who has attained the age of 18 years, and

(b)who the Registrar General is satisfied is a relative of an adopted person and has such information as is necessary to enable him to obtain a certified copy of the record of the adopted person’s birth.

(6)Regulations may provide for—

(a)the disclosure of information contained in one Part of the register to persons for whom there is an entry in the other Part,

(b)the payment of prescribed fees in respect of the making or alteration of entries in the register and the disclosure of information contained in the register.

81 Adoption Contact Register: supplementaryE+W

(1)The Adoption Contact Register is not to be open to public inspection or search.

(2)In section 80, “relative”, in relation to an adopted person, means any person who (but for his adoption) would be related to him by blood (including half-blood) or marriage.

(3)The Registrar General must not give any information entered in the register to any person except in accordance with subsection (6)(a) of that section or regulations made by virtue of section 64(4)(b).

(4)In section 80, “regulations” means regulations made by the Registrar General with the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, and “prescribed” means prescribed by such regulations.

GeneralE+W

82 InterpretationE+W

(1)In this Chapter—

  • records” includes certified copies kept by the Registrar General of entries in any register of births,

  • registers of live-births” means the registers of live-births made under the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (c. 20).

(2)Any register, record or index maintained under this Chapter may be maintained in any form the Registrar General considers appropriate; and references (however expressed) to entries in such a register, or to their amendment, marking or cancellation, are to be read accordingly.

Chapter 6 E+W+S+N.I.Adoptions with a foreign element

Bringing children into and out of the United KingdomE+W+S+N.I.

83 Restriction on bringing children inE+W+S+N.I.

(1)This section applies where a person who is habitually resident in the British Islands (the “British resident”)—

(a)brings, or causes another to bring, a child who is habitually resident outside the British Islands into the United Kingdom for the purpose of adoption by the British resident, or

(b)at any time brings, or causes another to bring, into the United Kingdom a child adopted by the British resident under an external adoption effected within the period of six months ending with that time.

The references to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident include a reference to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident and another person.

(2)But this section does not apply if the child is intended to be adopted under a Convention adoption order.

(3)An external adoption means an adoption, other than a Convention adoption, of a child effected under the law of any country or territory outside the British Islands, whether or not the adoption is—

(a)an adoption within the meaning of Chapter 4, or

(b)a full adoption (within the meaning of section 88(3)).

(4)Regulations may require a person intending to bring, or to cause another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies—

(a)to apply to an adoption agency (including a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption agency) in the prescribed manner for an assessment of his suitability to adopt the child, and

(b)to give the agency any information it may require for the purpose of the assessment.

(5)Regulations may require prescribed conditions to be met in respect of a child brought into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies.

(6)In relation to a child brought into the United Kingdom for adoption in circumstances where this section applies, regulations may—

(a)provide for any provision of Chapter 3 to apply with modifications or not to apply,

(b)if notice of intention to adopt has been given, impose functions in respect of the child on the local authority to which the notice was given.

(7)If a person brings, or causes another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom at any time in circumstances where this section applies, he is guilty of an offence if—

(a)he has not complied with any requirement imposed by virtue of subsection (4), or

(b)any condition required to be met by virtue of subsection (5) is not met,

before that time, or before any later time which may be prescribed.

(8)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a)on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or both,

(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months, or a fine, or both.

(9)In this section, “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations and “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State, after consultation with the Assembly.

84 Giving parental responsibility prior to adoption abroadE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The High Court may, on an application by persons who the court is satisfied intend to adopt a child under the law of a country or territory outside the British Islands, make an order giving parental responsibility for the child to them.

(2)An order under this section may not give parental responsibility to persons who the court is satisfied meet those requirements as to domicile, or habitual residence, in England and Wales which have to be met if an adoption order is to be made in favour of those persons.

(3)An order under this section may not be made unless any requirements prescribed by regulations are satisfied.

(4)An application for an order under this section may not be made unless at all times during the preceding ten weeks the child’s home was with the applicant or, in the case of an application by two people, both of them.

(5)Section 46(2) to (4) has effect in relation to an order under this section as it has effect in relation to adoption orders.

(6)Regulations may provide for any provision of this Act which refers to adoption orders to apply, with or without modifications, to orders under this section.

(7)In this section, “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State, after consultation with the Assembly.

85 Restriction on taking children outE+W+S+N.I.

(1)A child who—

(a)is a Commonwealth citizen, or

(b)is habitually resident in the United Kingdom,

must not be removed from the United Kingdom to a place outside the British Islands for the purpose of adoption unless the condition in subsection (2) is met.

(2)The condition is that—

(a)the prospective adopters have parental responsibility for the child by virtue of an order under section 84, or

(b)the child is removed under the authority of an order under section 49 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) or Article 57 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)).

(3)Removing a child from the United Kingdom includes arranging to do so; and the circumstances in which a person arranges to remove a child from the United Kingdom include those where he—

(a)enters into an arrangement for the purpose of facilitating such a removal of the child,

(b)initiates or takes part in any negotiations of which the purpose is the conclusion of an arrangement within paragraph (a), or

(c)causes another person to take any step mentioned in paragraph (a) or (b).

An arrangement includes an agreement (whether or not enforceable).

(4)A person who removes a child from the United Kingdom in contravention of subsection (1) is guilty of an offence.

(5)A person is not guilty of an offence under subsection (4) of causing a person to take any step mentioned in paragraph (a) or (b) of subsection (3) unless it is proved that he knew or had reason to suspect that the step taken would contravene subsection (1).

But this subsection only applies if sufficient evidence is adduced to raise an issue as to whether the person had the knowledge or reason mentioned.

(6)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a)on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or both,

(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months, or a fine, or both.

(7)In any proceedings under this section—

(a)a report by a British consular officer or a deposition made before a British consular officer and authenticated under the signature of that officer is admissible, upon proof that the officer or the deponent cannot be found in the United Kingdom, as evidence of the matters stated in it, and

(b)it is not necessary to prove the signature or official character of the person who appears to have signed any such report or deposition.

86 Power to modify sections 83 and 85E+W+S+N.I.

(1)Regulations may provide for section 83 not to apply if—

(a)the adopters or (as the case may be) prospective adopters are natural parents, natural relatives or guardians of the child in question (or one of them is), or

(b)the British resident in question is a partner of a parent of the child,

and any prescribed conditions are met.

(2)Regulations may provide for section 85(1) to apply with modifications, or not to apply, if—

(a)the prospective adopters are parents, relatives or guardians of the child in question (or one of them is), or

(b)the prospective adopter is a partner of a parent of the child,

and any prescribed conditions are met.

(3)On the occasion of the first exercise of the power to make regulations under this section—

(a)the statutory instrument containing the regulations is not to be made unless a draft of the instrument has been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament, and

(b)accordingly section 140(2) does not apply to the instrument.

(4)In this section, “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations and “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State after consultation with the Assembly.

Overseas adoptionsE+W+S+N.I.

87 Overseas adoptionsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In this Act, “overseas adoption”—

(a)means an adoption of a description specified in an order made by the Secretary of State, being a description of adoptions effected under the law of any country or territory outside the British Islands, but

(b)does not include a Convention adoption.

(2)Regulations may prescribe the requirements that ought to be met by an adoption of any description effected after the commencement of the regulations for it to be an overseas adoption for the purposes of this Act.

(3)At any time when such regulations have effect, the Secretary of State must exercise his powers under this section so as to secure that subsequently effected adoptions of any description are not overseas adoptions for the purposes of this Act if he considers that they are not likely within a reasonable time to meet the prescribed requirements.

(4)In this section references to this Act include the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36).

(5)An order under this section may contain provision as to the manner in which evidence of any overseas adoption may be given.

(6)In this section—

  • adoption” means an adoption of a child or of a person who was a child at the time the adoption was applied for,

  • regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State after consultation with the Assembly.

MiscellaneousE+W+S+N.I.

88 Modification of section 67 for Hague Convention adoptionsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)If the High Court is satisfied, on an application under this section, that each of the following conditions is met in the case of a Convention adoption, it may direct that section 67(3) does not apply, or does not apply to any extent specified in the direction.

(2)The conditions are—

(a)that under the law of the country in which the adoption was effected, the adoption is not a full adoption,

(b)that the consents referred to in Article 4(c) and (d) of the Convention have not been given for a full adoption or that the United Kingdom is not the receiving State (within the meaning of Article 2 of the Convention),

(c)that it would be more favourable to the adopted child for a direction to be given under subsection (1).

(3)A full adoption is an adoption by virtue of which the child is to be treated in law as not being the child of any person other than the adopters or adopter.

(4)In relation to a direction under this section and an application for it, sections 59 and 60 of the Family Law Act 1986 (c. 55) (declarations under Part 3 of that Act as to marital status) apply as they apply in relation to a direction under that Part and an application for such a direction.

89 Annulment etc. of overseas or Hague Convention adoptionsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The High Court may, on an application under this subsection, by order annul a Convention adoption or Convention adoption order on the ground that the adoption is contrary to public policy.

(2)The High Court may, on an application under this subsection—

(a)by order provide for an overseas adoption or a determination under section 91 to cease to be valid on the ground that the adoption or determination is contrary to public policy or that the authority which purported to authorise the adoption or make the determination was not competent to entertain the case, or

(b)decide the extent, if any, to which a determination under section 91 has been affected by a subsequent determination under that section.

(3)The High Court may, in any proceedings in that court, decide that an overseas adoption or a determination under section 91 is to be treated, for the purposes of those proceedings, as invalid on either of the grounds mentioned in subsection (2)(a).

(4)Subject to the preceding provisions, the validity of a Convention adoption, Convention adoption order or overseas adoption or a determination under section 91 cannot be called in question in proceedings in any court in England and Wales.

90 Section 89: supplementaryE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Any application for an order under section 89 or a decision under subsection (2)(b) or (3) of that section must be made in the prescribed manner and within any prescribed period.

Prescribed” means prescribed by rules.

(2)No application may be made under section 89(1) in respect of an adoption unless immediately before the application is made—

(a)the person adopted, or

(b)the adopters or adopter,

habitually reside in England and Wales.

(3)In deciding in pursuance of section 89 whether such an authority as is mentioned in section 91 was competent to entertain a particular case, a court is bound by any finding of fact made by the authority and stated by the authority to be so made for the purpose of determining whether the authority was competent to entertain the case.

91 Overseas determinations and ordersE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Subsection (2) applies where any authority of a Convention country (other than the United Kingdom) or of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or any British overseas territory has power under the law of that country or territory—

(a)to authorise, or review the authorisation of, an adoption order made in that country or territory, or

(b)to give or review a decision revoking or annulling such an order or a Convention adoption.

(2)If the authority makes a determination in the exercise of that power, the determination is to have effect for the purpose of effecting, confirming or terminating the adoption in question or, as the case may be, confirming its termination.

(3)Subsection (2) is subject to section 89 and to any subsequent determination having effect under that subsection.

Chapter 7 E+WMiscellaneous

RestrictionsE+W

92 Restriction on arranging adoptions etc.E+W

(1)A person who is neither an adoption agency nor acting in pursuance of an order of the High Court must not take any of the steps mentioned in subsection (2).

(2)The steps are—

(a)asking a person other than an adoption agency to provide a child for adoption,

(b)asking a person other than an adoption agency to provide prospective adopters for a child,

(c)offering to find a child for adoption,

(d)offering a child for adoption to a person other than an adoption agency,

(e)handing over a child to any person other than an adoption agency with a view to the child’s adoption by that or another person,

(f)receiving a child handed over to him in contravention of paragraph (e),

(g)entering into an agreement with any person for the adoption of a child, or for the purpose of facilitating the adoption of a child, where no adoption agency is acting on behalf of the child in the adoption,

(h)initiating or taking part in negotiations of which the purpose is the conclusion of an agreement within paragraph (g),

(i)causing another person to take any of the steps mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (h).

(3)Subsection (1) does not apply to a person taking any of the steps mentioned in paragraphs (d), (e), (g), (h) and (i) of subsection (2) if the following condition is met.

(4)The condition is that—

(a)the prospective adopters are parents, relatives or guardians of the child (or one of them is), or

(b)the prospective adopter is the partner of a parent of the child.

(5)References to an adoption agency in subsection (2) include a prescribed person outside the United Kingdom exercising functions corresponding to those of an adoption agency, if the functions are being exercised in prescribed circumstances in respect of the child in question.

(6)The Secretary of State may, after consultation with the Assembly, by order make any amendments of subsections (1) to (4), and any consequential amendments of this Act, which he considers necessary or expedient.

(7)In this section—

(a)agreement” includes an arrangement (whether or not enforceable),

(b)prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Secretary of State after consultation with the Assembly.

93 Offence of breaching restrictions under section 92E+W

(1)If a person contravenes section 92(1), he is guilty of an offence; and, if that person is an adoption society, the person who manages the society is also guilty of the offence.

(2)A person is not guilty of an offence under subsection (1) of taking the step mentioned in paragraph (f) of section 92(2) unless it is proved that he knew or had reason to suspect that the child was handed over to him in contravention of paragraph (e) of that subsection.

(3)A person is not guilty of an offence under subsection (1) of causing a person to take any of the steps mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (h) of section 92(2) unless it is proved that he knew or had reason to suspect that the step taken would contravene the paragraph in question.

(4)But subsections (2) and (3) only apply if sufficient evidence is adduced to raise an issue as to whether the person had the knowledge or reason mentioned.

(5)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding £10,000, or both.

94 Restriction on reportsE+W

(1)A person who is not within a prescribed description may not, in any prescribed circumstances, prepare a report for any person about the suitability of a child for adoption or of a person to adopt a child or about the adoption, or placement for adoption, of a child.

Prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Secretary of State after consultation with the Assembly.

(2)If a person—

(a)contravenes subsection (1), or

(b)causes a person to prepare a report, or submits to any person a report which has been prepared, in contravention of that subsection,

he is guilty of an offence.

(3)If a person who works for an adoption society—

(a)contravenes subsection (1), or

(b)causes a person to prepare a report, or submits to any person a report which has been prepared, in contravention of that subsection,

the person who manages the society is also guilty of the offence.

(4)A person is not guilty of an offence under subsection (2)(b) unless it is proved that he knew or had reason to suspect that the report would be, or had been, prepared in contravention of subsection (1).

But this subsection only applies if sufficient evidence is adduced to raise an issue as to whether the person had the knowledge or reason mentioned.

(5)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

95 Prohibition of certain paymentsE+W

(1)This section applies to any payment (other than an excepted payment) which is made for or in consideration of—

(a)the adoption of a child,

(b)giving any consent required in connection with the adoption of a child,

(c)removing from the United Kingdom a child who is a Commonwealth citizen, or is habitually resident in the United Kingdom, to a place outside the British Islands for the purpose of adoption,

(d)a person (who is neither an adoption agency nor acting in pursuance of an order of the High Court) taking any step mentioned in section 92(2),

(e)preparing, causing to be prepared or submitting a report the preparation of which contravenes section 94(1).

(2)In this section and section 96, removing a child from the United Kingdom has the same meaning as in section 85.

(3)Any person who—

(a)makes any payment to which this section applies,

(b)agrees or offers to make any such payment, or

(c)receives or agrees to receive or attempts to obtain any such payment,

is guilty of an offence.

(4)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding £10,000, or both.

96 Excepted paymentsE+W

(1)A payment is an excepted payment if it is made by virtue of, or in accordance with provision made by or under, this Act, the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) or the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)).

(2)A payment is an excepted payment if it is made to a registered adoption society by—

(a)a parent or guardian of a child, or

(b)a person who adopts or proposes to adopt a child,

in respect of expenses reasonably incurred by the society in connection with the adoption or proposed adoption of the child.

(3)A payment is an excepted payment if it is made in respect of any legal or medical expenses incurred or to be incurred by any person in connection with an application to a court which he has made or proposes to make for an adoption order, a placement order, or an order under section 26 or 84.

(4)A payment made as mentioned in section 95(1)(c) is an excepted payment if—

(a)the condition in section 85(2) is met, and

(b)the payment is made in respect of the travel and accommodation expenses reasonably incurred in removing the child from the United Kingdom for the purpose of adoption.

97 Sections 92 to 96: interpretationE+W

In sections 92 to 96—

(a)adoption agency” includes a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption agency,

(b)payment” includes reward,

(c)references to adoption are to the adoption of persons, wherever they may be habitually resident, effected under the law of any country or territory, whether within or outside the British Islands.

InformationE+W+S+N.I.

98 Pre-commencement adoptions: informationE+W

(1)Regulations under section 9 may make provision for the purpose of—

(a)assisting persons adopted before the appointed day who have attained the age of 18 to obtain information in relation to their adoption, and

(b)facilitating contact between such persons and their relatives.

(2)For that purpose the regulations may confer functions on—

(a)registered adoption support agencies,

(b)the Registrar General,

(c)adoption agencies.

(3)For that purpose the regulations may—

(a)authorise or require any person mentioned in subsection (2) to disclose information,

(b)authorise or require the disclosure of information contained in records kept under section 8 of the Public Records Act 1958 (c. 51) (court records),

and may impose conditions on the disclosure of information, including conditions restricting its further disclosure.

(4)The regulations may authorise the charging of prescribed fees by any person mentioned in subsection (2) or in respect of the disclosure of information under subsection (3)(b).

(5)An authorisation or requirement to disclose information by virtue of subsection (3)(a) has effect in spite of any restriction on the disclosure of information in Chapter 5.

(6)The making of regulations by virtue of subsections (2) to (4) which relate to the Registrar General requires the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

(7)In this section—

  • appointed day” means the day appointed for the commencement of sections 56 to 65,

  • registered adoption support agency” means an adoption support agency in respect of which a person is registered under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14),

  • relative”, in relation to an adopted person, means any person who (but for his adoption) would be related to him by blood (including half-blood) or marriage.

ProceedingsE+W+S+N.I.

99 Proceedings for offencesE+W+S+N.I.

Proceedings for an offence by virtue of section 9 or 59 may not, without the written consent of the Attorney General, be taken by any person other than the National Care Standards Commission or the Assembly.

100 AppealsE+W+S+N.I.

In section 94 of the 1989 Act (appeals under that Act), in subsections (1)(a) and (2), after “this Act” there is inserted “ or the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

101 PrivacyE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Proceedings under this Act in the High Court or a County Court may be heard and determined in private.

(2)In section 12 of the Administration of Justice Act 1960 (c. 65) (publication of information relating to proceedings in private), in subsection (1)(a)(ii), after “1989” there is inserted “ or the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

(3)In section 97 of the 1989 Act (privacy for children involved in certain proceedings), after “this Act” in subsections (1) and (2) there is inserted “ or the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support ServiceE+W

102 Officers of the ServiceE+W

(1)For the purposes of—

(a)any relevant application,

(b)the signification by any person of any consent to placement or adoption,

rules must provide for the appointment in prescribed cases of an officer of the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (“the Service”).

(2)The rules may provide for the appointment of such an officer in other circumstances in which it appears to the Lord Chancellor to be necessary or expedient to do so.

(3)The rules may provide for the officer—

(a)to act on behalf of the child upon the hearing of any relevant application, with the duty of safeguarding the interests of the child in the prescribed manner,

(b)where the court so requests, to prepare a report on matters relating to the welfare of the child in question,

(c)to witness documents which signify consent to placement or adoption,

(d)to perform prescribed functions.

(4)A report prepared in pursuance of the rules on matters relating to the welfare of a child must—

(a)deal with prescribed matters (unless the court orders otherwise), and

(b)be made in the manner required by the court.

(5)A person who—

(a)in the case of an application for the making, varying or revocation of a placement order, is employed by the local authority which made the application,

(b)in the case of an application for an adoption order in respect of a child who was placed for adoption, is employed by the adoption agency which placed him, or

(c)is within a prescribed description,

is not to be appointed under subsection (1) or (2).

(6)In this section, “relevant application” means an application for—

(a)the making, varying or revocation of a placement order,

(b)the making of an order under section 26, or the varying or revocation of such an order,

(c)the making of an adoption order, or

(d)the making of an order under section 84.

(7)Rules may make provision as to the assistance which the court may require an officer of the Service to give to it.

103 Right of officers of the Service to have access to adoption agency recordsE+W

(1)Where an officer of the Service has been appointed to act under section 102(1), he has the right at all reasonable times to examine and take copies of any records of, or held by, an adoption agency which were compiled in connection with the making, or proposed making, by any person of any application under this Part in respect of the child concerned.

(2)Where an officer of the Service takes a copy of any record which he is entitled to examine under this section, that copy or any part of it is admissible as evidence of any matter referred to in any—

(a)report which he makes to the court in the proceedings in question, or

(b)evidence which he gives in those proceedings.

(3)Subsection (2) has effect regardless of any enactment or rule of law which would otherwise prevent the record in question being admissible in evidence.

EvidenceE+W

104 Evidence of consentE+W

(1)If a document signifying any consent which is required by this Part to be given is witnessed in accordance with rules, it is to be admissible in evidence without further proof of the signature of the person by whom it was executed.

(2)A document signifying any such consent which purports to be witnessed in accordance with rules is to be presumed to be so witnessed, and to have been executed and witnessed on the date and at the place specified in the document, unless the contrary is proved.

Scotland, Northern Ireland and the IslandsE+W

105 Effect of certain Scottish orders and provisionsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)A Scottish adoption order or an order under section 25 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) (interim adoption orders) has effect in England and Wales as it has in Scotland, but as if references to the parental responsibilities and the parental rights in relation to a child were to parental responsibility for the child.

(2)An order made under section 18 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (freeing orders), and the revocation or variation of such an order under section 20 or 21 of that Act, have effect in England and Wales as they have effect in Scotland, but as if references to the parental responsibilities and the parental rights in relation to a child were to parental responsibility for the child.

(3)Any person who—

(a)contravenes section 27(1) of that Act (removal where adoption agreed etc.), or

(b)contravenes section 28(1) or (2) of that Act (removal where applicant provided home),

is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(4)Orders made under section 29 of that Act (order to return or not to remove child) are to have effect in England and Wales as if they were orders of the High Court under section 41 of this Act.

106 Effect of certain Northern Irish orders and provisionsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)A Northern Irish adoption order or an order under Article 26 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)) (interim orders) has effect in England and Wales as it has in Northern Ireland.

(2)An order made under Article 17 or 18 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (freeing orders), or the variation or revocation of such an order under Article 20 or 21 of that Order, have effect in England and Wales as they have in Northern Ireland.

(3)Any person who—

(a)contravenes Article 28(1) or (2) of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (removal where adoption agreed etc.), or

(b)contravenes Article 29(1) or (2) of that Order (removal where applicant provided home),

is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(4)Orders made under Article 30 of that Order (order to return or not to remove child) are to have effect in England and Wales as if they were orders of the High Court under section 41 of this Act.

107 Use of adoption records from other parts of the British IslandsE+W+S+N.I.

Any document which is receivable as evidence of any matter—

(a)in Scotland under section 45(2) of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28),

(b)in Northern Ireland under Article 63(1) of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987, or

(c)in the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands under an enactment corresponding to section 77(3) of this Act,

is also receivable as evidence of that matter in England and Wales.

108 Channel Islands and the Isle of ManE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Regulations may provide—

(a)for a reference in any provision of this Act to an order of a court to include an order of a court in the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands which appears to the Secretary of State to correspond in its effect to the order in question,

(b)for a reference in any provision of this Act to an adoption agency to include a person who appears to the Secretary of State to exercise functions under the law of the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands which correspond to those of an adoption agency and for any reference in any provision of this Act to a child placed for adoption by an adoption agency to be read accordingly,

(c)for a reference in any provision of this Act to an enactment (including an enactment contained in this Act) to include a provision of the law of the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands which appears to the Secretary of State to correspond in its effect to the enactment,

(d)for any reference in any provision of this Act to the United Kingdom to include the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands.

(2)Regulations may modify any provision of this Act, as it applies to any order made, or other thing done, under the law of the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands.

(3)In this section, “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State after consultation with the Assembly.

GeneralE+W

109 Avoiding delayE+W

(1)In proceedings in which a question may arise as to whether an adoption order or placement order should be made, or any other question with respect to such an order, the court must (in the light of any rules made by virtue of subsection (2))—

(a)draw up a timetable with a view to determining such a question without delay, and

(b)give such directions as it considers appropriate for the purpose of ensuring that the timetable is adhered to.

(2)Rules may—

(a)prescribe periods within which prescribed steps must be taken in relation to such proceedings, and

(b)make other provision with respect to such proceedings for the purpose of ensuring that such questions are determined without delay.

110 Service of notices etc.E+W

Any notice or information required to be given by virtue of this Act may be given by post.

Part 2 E+W+S+N.I.Amendments of the Children Act 1989

Prospective

111 Parental responsibility of unmarried fatherE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Section 4 of the 1989 Act (acquisition of responsibility by the father of a child who is not married to the child’s mother) is amended as follows.

(2)In subsection (1) (cases where parental responsibility is acquired), for the words after “birth” there is substituted , the father shall acquire parental responsibility for the child if—

(a)he becomes registered as the child’s father under any of the enactments specified in subsection (1A);

(b)he and the child’s mother make an agreement (a “parental responsibility agreement”) providing for him to have parental responsibility for the child; or

(c)the court, on his application, orders that he shall have parental responsibility for the child.

(3)After that subsection there is inserted—

(1A)The enactments referred to in subsection (1)(a) are—

(a)paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) of section 10(1) and of section 10A(1) of the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953;

(b)paragraphs (a), (b)(i) and (c) of section 18(1), and sections 18(2)(b) and 20(1)(a) of the Registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages (Scotland) Act 1965; and

(c)sub-paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) of Article 14(3) of the Births and Deaths Registration (Northern Ireland) Order 1976.

(1B)The Lord Chancellor may by order amend subsection (1A) so as to add further enactments to the list in that subsection.

(4)For subsection (3) there is substituted—

(2A)A person who has acquired parental responsibility under subsection (1) shall cease to have that responsibility only if the court so orders.

(3)The court may make an order under subsection (2A) on the application—

(a)of any person who has parental responsibility for the child; or

(b)with the leave of the court, of the child himself,

subject, in the case of parental responsibility acquired under subsection (1)(c), to section 12(4).

(5)Accordingly, in section 2(2) of the 1989 Act (a father of a child who is not married to the child’s mother shall not have parental responsibility for the child unless he acquires it in accordance with the provisions of the Act), for the words from “shall not” to “acquires it” there is substituted “ shall have parental responsibility for the child if he has acquired it (and has not ceased to have it) ”.

(6)In section 104 of the 1989 Act (regulations and orders)—

(a)in subsection (2), after “section” there is inserted “ 4(1B), ”, and

(b)in subsection (3), after “section” there is inserted “ 4(1B) or ”.

(7)Paragraph (a) of section 4(1) of the 1989 Act, as substituted by subsection (2) of this section, does not confer parental responsibility on a man who was registered under an enactment referred to in paragraph (a), (b) or (c) of section 4(1A) of that Act, as inserted by subsection (3) of this section, before the commencement of subsection (3) in relation to that paragraph.

Prospective

112 Acquisition of parental responsibility by step-parentE+W+S+N.I.

After section 4 of the 1989 Act there is inserted—

4A Acquisition of parental responsibility by step-parent

(1)Where a child’s parent (“parent A”) who has parental responsibility for the child is married to a person who is not the child’s parent (“the step-parent”)—

(a)parent A or, if the other parent of the child also has parental responsibility for the child, both parents may by agreement with the step-parent provide for the step-parent to have parental responsibility for the child; or

(b)the court may, on the application of the step-parent, order that the step-parent shall have parental responsibility for the child.

(2)An agreement under subsection (1)(a) is also a “parental responsibility agreement”, and section 4(2) applies in relation to such agreements as it applies in relation to parental responsibility agreements under section 4.

(3)A parental responsibility agreement under subsection (1)(a), or an order under subsection (1)(b), may only be brought to an end by an order of the court made on the application—

(a)of any person who has parental responsibility for the child; or

(b)with the leave of the court, of the child himself.

(4)The court may only grant leave under subsection (3)(b) if it is satisfied that the child has sufficient understanding to make the proposed application.

Prospective

113 Section 8 orders: local authority foster parentsE+W+S+N.I.

In section 9 of the 1989 Act (restrictions on making section 8 orders)—

(a)in subsection (3)(c), for “three years” there is substituted “ one year ”, and

(b)subsection (4) is omitted.

Prospective

114 Residence orders: extension to age of 18E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In section 12 of the 1989 Act (residence orders and parental responsibility), after subsection (4) there is inserted—

(5)The power of a court to make a residence order in favour of any person who is not the parent or guardian of the child concerned includes power to direct, at the request of that person, that the order continue in force until the child reaches the age of eighteen (unless the order is brought to an end earlier); and any power to vary a residence order is exercisable accordingly.

(6)Where a residence order includes such a direction, an application to vary or discharge the order may only be made, if apart from this subsection the leave of the court is not required, with such leave.

(2)In section 9 of that Act (restrictions on making section 8 orders), at the beginning of subsection (6) there is inserted “ Subject to section 12(5) ”.

(3)In section 91 of that Act (effect and duration of orders), in subsection (10), after “9(6)” there is inserted “ or 12(5) ”.

Prospective

115 Special guardianshipE+W+S+N.I.

(1)After section 14 of the 1989 Act there is inserted—

Special guardianshipE+W+S+N.I.

14A Special guardianship orders

(1)A “special guardianship order” is an order appointing one or more individuals to be a child’s “special guardian” (or special guardians).

(2)A special guardian—

(a)must be aged eighteen or over; and

(b)must not be a parent of the child in question,

and subsections (3) to (6) are to be read in that light.

(3)The court may make a special guardianship order with respect to any child on the application of an individual who—

(a)is entitled to make such an application with respect to the child; or

(b)has obtained the leave of the court to make the application,

or on the joint application of more than one such individual.

(4)Section 9(3) applies in relation to an application for leave to apply for a special guardianship order as it applies in relation to an application for leave to apply for a section 8 order.

(5)The individuals who are entitled to apply for a special guardianship order with respect to a child are—

(a)any guardian of the child;

(b)any individual in whose favour a residence order is in force with respect to the child;

(c)any individual listed in subsection (5)(b) or (c) of section 10 (as read with subsection (10) of that section);

(d)a local authority foster parent with whom the child has lived for a period of at least one year immediately preceding the application.

(6)The court may also make a special guardianship order with respect to a child in any family proceedings in which a question arises with respect to the welfare of the child if—

(a)an application for the order has been made by an individual who falls within subsection (3)(a) or (b) (or more than one such individual jointly); or

(b)the court considers that a special guardianship order should be made even though no such application has been made.

(7)No individual may make an application under subsection (3) or (6)(a) unless, before the beginning of the period of three months ending with the date of the application, he has given written notice of his intention to make the application—

(a)if the child in question is being looked after by a local authority, to that local authority, or

(b)otherwise, to the local authority in whose area the individual is ordinarily resident.

(8)On receipt of such a notice, the local authority must investigate the matter and prepare a report for the court dealing with—

(a)the suitability of the applicant to be a special guardian;

(b)such matters (if any) as may be prescribed by the Secretary of State; and

(c)any other matter which the local authority consider to be relevant.

(9)The court may itself ask a local authority to conduct such an investigation and prepare such a report, and the local authority must do so.

(10)The local authority may make such arrangements as they see fit for any person to act on their behalf in connection with conducting an investigation or preparing a report referred to in subsection (8) or (9).

(11)The court may not make a special guardianship order unless it has received a report dealing with the matters referred to in subsection (8).

(12)Subsections (8) and (9) of section 10 apply in relation to special guardianship orders as they apply in relation to section 8 orders.

(13)This section is subject to section 29(5) and (6) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002.

14B Special guardianship orders: making

(1)Before making a special guardianship order, the court must consider whether, if the order were made—

(a)a contact order should also be made with respect to the child, and

(b)any section 8 order in force with respect to the child should be varied or discharged.

(2)On making a special guardianship order, the court may also—

(a)give leave for the child to be known by a new surname;

(b)grant the leave required by section 14C(3)(b), either generally or for specified purposes.

14C Special guardianship orders: effect

(1)The effect of a special guardianship order is that while the order remains in force—

(a)a special guardian appointed by the order has parental responsibility for the child in respect of whom it is made; and

(b)subject to any other order in force with respect to the child under this Act, a special guardian is entitled to exercise parental responsibility to the exclusion of any other person with parental responsibility for the child (apart from another special guardian).

(2)Subsection (1) does not affect—

(a)the operation of any enactment or rule of law which requires the consent of more than one person with parental responsibility in a matter affecting the child; or

(b)any rights which a parent of the child has in relation to the child’s adoption or placement for adoption.

(3)While a special guardianship order is in force with respect to a child, no person may—

(a)cause the child to be known by a new surname; or

(b)remove him from the United Kingdom,

without either the written consent of every person who has parental responsibility for the child or the leave of the court.

(4)Subsection (3)(b) does not prevent the removal of a child, for a period of less than three months, by a special guardian of his.

(5)If the child with respect to whom a special guardianship order is in force dies, his special guardian must take reasonable steps to give notice of that fact to—

(a)each parent of the child with parental responsibility; and

(b)each guardian of the child,

but if the child has more than one special guardian, and one of them has taken such steps in relation to a particular parent or guardian, any other special guardian need not do so as respects that parent or guardian.

(6)This section is subject to section 29(7) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002.

14D Special guardianship orders: variation and discharge

(1)The court may vary or discharge a special guardianship order on the application of—

(a)the special guardian (or any of them, if there are more than one);

(b)any parent or guardian of the child concerned;

(c)any individual in whose favour a residence order is in force with respect to the child;

(d)any individual not falling within any of paragraphs (a) to (c) who has, or immediately before the making of the special guardianship order had, parental responsibility for the child;

(e)the child himself; or

(f)a local authority designated in a care order with respect to the child.

(2)In any family proceedings in which a question arises with respect to the welfare of a child with respect to whom a special guardianship order is in force, the court may also vary or discharge the special guardianship order if it considers that the order should be varied or discharged, even though no application has been made under subsection (1).

(3)The following must obtain the leave of the court before making an application under subsection (1)—

(a)the child;

(b)any parent or guardian of his;

(c)any step-parent of his who has acquired, and has not lost, parental responsibility for him by virtue of section 4A;

(d)any individual falling within subsection (1)(d) who immediately before the making of the special guardianship order had, but no longer has, parental responsibility for him.

(4)Where the person applying for leave to make an application under subsection (1) is the child, the court may only grant leave if it is satisfied that he has sufficient understanding to make the proposed application under subsection (1).

(5)The court may not grant leave to a person falling within subsection (3)(b)(c) or (d) unless it is satisfied that there has been a significant change in circumstances since the making of the special guardianship order.

14E Special guardianship orders: supplementary

(1)In proceedings in which any question of making, varying or discharging a special guardianship order arises, the court shall (in the light of any rules made by virtue of subsection (3))—

(a)draw up a timetable with a view to determining the question without delay; and

(b)give such directions as it considers appropriate for the purpose of ensuring, so far as is reasonably practicable, that the timetable is adhered to.

(2)Subsection (1) applies also in relation to proceedings in which any other question with respect to a special guardianship order arises.

(3)The power to make rules in subsection (2) of section 11 applies for the purposes of this section as it applies for the purposes of that.

(4)A special guardianship order, or an order varying one, may contain provisions which are to have effect for a specified period.

(5)Section 11(7) (apart from paragraph (c)) applies in relation to special guardianship orders and orders varying them as it applies in relation to section 8 orders.

14F Special guardianship support services

(1)Each local authority must make arrangements for the provision within their area of special guardianship support services, which means—

(a)counselling, advice and information; and

(b)such other services as are prescribed,

in relation to special guardianship.

(2)The power to make regulations under subsection (1)(b) is to be exercised so as to secure that local authorities provide financial support.

(3)At the request of any of the following persons—

(a)a child with respect to whom a special guardianship order is in force;

(b)a special guardian;

(c)a parent;

(d)any other person who falls within a prescribed description,

a local authority may carry out an assessment of that person’s needs for special guardianship support services (but, if the Secretary of State so provides in regulations, they must do so if he is a person of a prescribed description, or if his case falls within a prescribed description, or if both he and his case fall within prescribed descriptions).

(4)A local authority may, at the request of any other person, carry out an assessment of that person’s needs for special guardianship support services.

(5)Where, as a result of an assessment, a local authority decide that a person has needs for special guardianship support services, they must then decide whether to provide any such services to that person.

(6)If—

(a)a local authority decide to provide any special guardianship support services to a person, and

(b)the circumstances fall within a prescribed description,

the local authority must prepare a plan in accordance with which special guardianship support services are to be provided to him, and keep the plan under review.

(7)The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision about assessments, preparing and reviewing plans, the provision of special guardianship support services in accordance with plans and reviewing the provision of special guardianship support services.

(8)The regulations may in particular make provision—

(a)about the type of assessment which is to be carried out, or the way in which an assessment is to be carried out;

(b)about the way in which a plan is to be prepared;

(c)about the way in which, and the time at which, a plan or the provision of special guardianship support services is to be reviewed;

(d)about the considerations to which a local authority are to have regard in carrying out an assessment or review or preparing a plan;

(e)as to the circumstances in which a local authority may provide special guardianship support services subject to conditions (including conditions as to payment for the support or the repayment of financial support);

(f)as to the consequences of conditions imposed by virtue of paragraph (e) not being met (including the recovery of any financial support provided);

(g)as to the circumstances in which this section may apply to a local authority in respect of persons who are outside that local authority’s area;

(h)as to the circumstances in which a local authority may recover from another local authority the expenses of providing special guardianship support services to any person.

(9)A local authority may provide special guardianship support services (or any part of them) by securing their provision by—

(a)another local authority; or

(b)a person within a description prescribed in regulations of persons who may provide special guardianship support services,

and may also arrange with any such authority or person for that other authority or that person to carry out the local authority’s functions in relation to assessments under this section.

(10)A local authority may carry out an assessment of the needs of any person for the purposes of this section at the same time as an assessment of his needs is made under any other provision of this Act or under any other enactment.

(11)Section 27 (co-operation between authorities) applies in relation to the exercise of functions of a local authority under this section as it applies in relation to the exercise of functions of a local authority under Part 3.

14G Special guardianship support services: representations

(1)Every local authority shall establish a procedure for considering representations (including complaints) made to them by any person to whom they may provide special guardianship support services about the discharge of their functions under section 14F in relation to him.

(2)Regulations may be made by the Secretary of State imposing time limits on the making of representations under subsection (1).

(3)In considering representations under subsection (1), a local authority shall comply with regulations (if any) made by the Secretary of State for the purposes of this subsection.

(2)The 1989 Act is amended as follows.

(3)In section 1 (welfare of the child), in subsection (4)(b), after “discharge” there is inserted “ a special guardianship order or ”.

(4)In section 5 (appointment of guardians)—

(a)in subsection (1)—

(i)in paragraph (b), for “or guardian” there is substituted “ , guardian or special guardian ”, and

(ii)at the end of paragraph (b) there is inserted ; or

(c)paragraph (b) does not apply, and the child’s only or last surviving special guardian dies.,

(b)in subsection (4), at the end there is inserted “ ; and a special guardian of a child may appoint another individual to be the child’s guardian in the event of his death ”, and

(c)in subsection (7), at the end of paragraph (b) there is inserted “ or he was the child’s only (or last surviving) special guardian ”.

116 Accommodation of children in need etc.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In section 17 of the 1989 Act (provision of services for children in need, their families and others), in subsection (6) (services that may be provided in exercise of the functions under that section) after “include” there is inserted “ providing accommodation and ”.

(2)In section 22 of that Act (general duty of local authority in relation to children looked after by them), in subsection (1) (looked after children include those provided with accommodation, with exceptions) before “23B” there is inserted “ 17 ”.

(3)In section 24A of that Act (advice and assistance for certain children and young persons aged 16 or over), in subsection (5), for “or, in exceptional circumstances, cash” there is substituted and, in exceptional circumstances, assistance may be given—

(a)by providing accommodation, if in the circumstances assistance may not be given in respect of the accommodation under section 24B, or

(b)in cash.

Prospective

117 Inquiries by local authorities into representationsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In section 24D of the 1989 Act (representations: sections 23A to 24B), after subsection (1) there is inserted—

(1A)Regulations may be made by the Secretary of State imposing time limits on the making of representations under subsection (1).

(2)Section 26 of that Act (procedure for considering other representations) is amended as follows.

(3)In subsection (3) (which makes provision as to the persons by whom, and the matters in respect of which, representations may be made), for “functions under this Part” there is substituted “ qualifying functions ”.

(4)After that subsection there is inserted—

(3A)The following are qualifying functions for the purposes of subsection (3)—

(a)functions under this Part,

(b)such functions under Part 4 or 5 as are specified by the Secretary of State in regulations.

(3B)The duty under subsection (3) extends to representations (including complaints) made to the authority by—

(a)any person mentioned in section 3(1) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (persons for whose needs provision is made by the Adoption Service) and any other person to whom arrangements for the provision of adoption support services (within the meaning of that Act) extend,

(b)such other person as the authority consider has sufficient interest in a child who is or may be adopted to warrant his representations being considered by them,

about the discharge by the authority of such functions under the Adoption and Children Act 2002 as are specified by the Secretary of State in regulations.

(5)In subsection (4) (procedure to require involvement of independent person), after paragraph (b) there is inserted—

but this subsection is subject to subsection (5A).

(6)After that subsection there is inserted—

(4A)Regulations may be made by the Secretary of State imposing time limits on the making of representations under this section.

(7)After subsection (5) there is inserted—

(5A)Regulations under subsection (5) may provide that subsection (4) does not apply in relation to any consideration or discussion which takes place as part of a procedure for which provision is made by the regulations for the purpose of resolving informally the matters raised in the representations.

Prospective

118 Review of cases of looked after childrenE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In section 26 of the 1989 Act (review of cases of looked after children, etc.), in subsection (2) (regulations as to reviews)—

(a)in paragraph (e), “to consider” is omitted and after “their care” there is inserted—

(i)to keep the section 31A plan for the child under review and, if they are of the opinion that some change is required, to revise the plan, or make a new plan, accordingly,

(ii)to consider,

(b)in paragraph (f), “to consider” is omitted and after the second mention of “the authority” there is inserted—

(i)if there is no plan for the future care of the child, to prepare one,

(ii)if there is such a plan for the child, to keep it under review and, if they are of the opinion that some change is required, to revise the plan or make a new plan, accordingly,

(iii)to consider,

(c)after paragraph (j) there is inserted—

(k)for the authority to appoint a person in respect of each case to carry out in the prescribed manner the functions mentioned in subsection (2A) and any prescribed function.

(2)After that subsection there is inserted—

(2A)The functions referred to in subsection (2)(k) are—

(a)participating in the review of the case in question,

(b)monitoring the performance of the authority’s functions in respect of the review,

(c)referring the case to an officer of the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service, if the person appointed under subsection (2)(k) considers it appropriate to do so.

(2B)A person appointed under subsection (2)(k) must be a person of a prescribed description.

(2C)In relation to children whose cases are referred to officers under subsection (2A)(c), the Lord Chancellor may by regulations—

(a)extend any functions of the officers in respect of family proceedings (within the meaning of section 12 of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000) to other proceedings,

(b)require any functions of the officers to be performed in the manner prescribed by the regulations.

Prospective

119 Advocacy servicesE+W+S+N.I.

After section 26 of the 1989 Act there is inserted—

26A Advocacy services

(1)Every local authority shall make arrangements for the provision of assistance to—

(a)persons who make or intend to make representations under section 24D; and

(b)children who make or intend to make representations under section 26.

(2)The assistance provided under the arrangements shall include assistance by way of representation.

(3)The arrangements—

(a)shall secure that a person may not provide assistance if he is a person who is prevented from doing so by regulations made by the Secretary of State; and

(b)shall comply with any other provision made by the regulations in relation to the arrangements.

(4)The Secretary of State may make regulations requiring local authorities to monitor the steps that they have taken with a view to ensuring that they comply with regulations made for the purposes of subsection (3).

(5)Every local authority shall give such publicity to their arrangements for the provision of assistance under this section as they consider appropriate.

Prospective

120 Meaning of “harm” in the 1989 ActE+W+S+N.I.

In section 31 of the 1989 Act (care and supervision orders), at the end of the definition of “harm” in subsection (9) there is inserted “ including, for example, impairment suffered from seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another ”.

Prospective

121 Care plansE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In section 31 of the 1989 Act (care and supervision orders), after subsection (3) there is inserted—

(3A)No care order may be made with respect to a child until the court has considered a section 31A plan.

(2)After that section there is inserted—

31A Care orders: care plans

(1)Where an application is made on which a care order might be made with respect to a child, the appropriate local authority must, within such time as the court may direct, prepare a plan (“a care plan”) for the future care of the child.

(2)While the application is pending, the authority must keep any care plan prepared by them under review and, if they are of the opinion some change is required, revise the plan, or make a new plan, accordingly.

(3)A care plan must give any prescribed information and do so in the prescribed manner.

(4)For the purposes of this section, the appropriate local authority, in relation to a child in respect of whom a care order might be made, is the local authority proposed to be designated in the order.

(5)In section 31(3A) and this section, references to a care order do not include an interim care order.

(6)A plan prepared, or treated as prepared, under this section is referred to in this Act as a “section 31A plan”.

(3)If—

(a)before subsection (2) comes into force, a care order has been made in respect of a child and a plan for the future care of the child has been prepared in connection with the making of the order by the local authority designated in the order, and

(b)on the day on which that subsection comes into force the order is in force, or would be in force but for section 29(1) of this Act,

the plan is to have effect as if made under section 31A of the 1989 Act.

Prospective

122 Interests of children in proceedingsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In section 41 of the 1989 Act (specified proceedings)—

(a)in subsection (6), after paragraph (h) there is inserted—

(hh)on an application for the making or revocation of a placement order (within the meaning of section 21 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002);,

(b)after that subsection there is inserted—

(6A)The proceedings which may be specified under subsection (6)(i) include (for example) proceedings for the making, varying or discharging of a section 8 order.

(2)In section 93 of the 1989 Act (rules of court), in subsection (2), after paragraph (b) there is inserted—

(bb)for children to be separately represented in relevant proceedings,.

Part 3 E+W+S+N.I.Miscellaneous and final provisions

Chapter 1 E+W+S+N.I.Miscellaneous

Prospective

Advertisements in the United KingdomE+W+S+N.I.

123 Restriction on advertisements etc.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)A person must not—

(a)publish or distribute an advertisement or information to which this section applies, or

(b)cause such an advertisement or information to be published or distributed.

(2)This section applies to an advertisement indicating that—

(a)the parent or guardian of a child wants the child to be adopted,

(b)a person wants to adopt a child,

(c)a person other than an adoption agency is willing to take any step mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (e), (g) and (h) and (so far as relating to those paragraphs) (i) of section 92(2),

(d)a person other than an adoption agency is willing to receive a child handed over to him with a view to the child’s adoption by him or another, or

(e)a person is willing to remove a child from the United Kingdom for the purposes of adoption.

(3)This section applies to—

(a)information about how to do anything which, if done, would constitute an offence under section 85 or 93, section 11 or 50 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) or Article 11 or 58 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)) (whether or not the information includes a warning that doing the thing in question may constitute an offence),

(b)information about a particular child as a child available for adoption.

(4)For the purposes of this section and section 124—

(a)publishing or distributing an advertisement or information means publishing it or distributing it to the public and includes doing so by electronic means (for example, by means of the internet),

(b)the public includes selected members of the public as well as the public generally or any section of the public.

(5)Subsection (1) does not apply to publication or distribution by or on behalf of an adoption agency.

(6)The Secretary of State may by order make any amendments of this section which he considers necessary or expedient in consequence of any developments in technology relating to publishing or distributing advertisements or other information by electronic or electro-magnetic means.

(7)References to an adoption agency in this section include a prescribed person outside the United Kingdom exercising functions corresponding to those of an adoption agency, if the functions are being exercised in prescribed circumstances.

Prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Secretary of State.

(8)Before exercising the power conferred by subsection (6) or (7), the Secretary of State must consult the Scottish Ministers, the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety and the Assembly.

(9)In this section—

(a)adoption agency” includes a Scottish or Northern Irish adoption agency,

(b)references to adoption are to the adoption of persons, wherever they may be habitually resident, effected under the law of any country or territory, whether within or outside the British Islands.

124 Offence of breaching restriction under section 123E+W+S+N.I.

(1)A person who contravenes section 123(1) is guilty of an offence.

(2)A person is not guilty of an offence under this section unless it is proved that he knew or had reason to suspect that section 123 applied to the advertisement or information.

But this subsection only applies if sufficient evidence is adduced to raise an issue as to whether the person had the knowledge or reason mentioned.

(3)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

Prospective

Adoption and Children Act RegisterE+W+S

125 Adoption and Children Act RegisterE+W+S

(1)Her Majesty may by Order in Council make provision for the Secretary of State to establish and maintain a register, to be called the Adoption and Children Act Register, containing—

(a)prescribed information about children who are suitable for adoption and prospective adopters who are suitable to adopt a child,

(b)prescribed information about persons included in the register in pursuance of paragraph (a) in respect of things occurring after their inclusion.

(2)For the purpose of giving assistance in finding persons with whom children may be placed for purposes other than adoption, an Order under this section may—

(a)provide for the register to contain information about such persons and the children who may be placed with them, and

(b)apply any of the other provisions of this group of sections (that is, this section and sections 126 to 131), with or without modifications.

(3)The register is not to be open to public inspection or search.

(4)An Order under this section may make provision about the retention of information in the register.

(5)Information is to be kept in the register in any form the Secretary of State considers appropriate.

126 Use of an organisation to establish the registerE+W+S

(1)The Secretary of State may make an arrangement with an organisation under which any function of his under an Order under section 125 of establishing and maintaining the register, and disclosing information entered in, or compiled from information entered in, the register to any person is performed wholly or partly by the organisation on his behalf.

(2)The arrangement may include provision for payments to be made to the organisation by the Secretary of State.

(3)If the Secretary of State makes an arrangement under this section with an organisation, the organisation is to perform the functions exercisable by virtue of this section in accordance with any directions given by the Secretary of State and the directions may be of general application (or general application in any part of Great Britain) or be special directions.

(4)An exercise of the Secretary of State’s powers under subsection (1) or (3) requires the agreement of the Scottish Ministers (if the register applies to Scotland) and of the Assembly (if the register applies to Wales).

(5)References in this group of sections to the registration organisation are to any organisation for the time being performing functions in respect of the register by virtue of arrangements under this section.

127 Use of an organisation as agency for paymentsE+W+S

(1)An Order under section 125 may authorise an organisation with which an arrangement is made under section 126 to act as agent for the payment or receipt of sums payable by adoption agencies to other adoption agencies and may require adoption agencies to pay or receive such sums through the organisation.

(2)The organisation is to perform the functions exercisable by virtue of this section in accordance with any directions given by the Secretary of State; and the directions may be of general application (or general application in any part of Great Britain) or be special directions.

(3)An exercise of the Secretary of State’s power to give directions under subsection (2) requires the agreement of the Scottish Ministers (if any payment agency provision applies to Scotland) and of the Assembly (if any payment agency provision applies to Wales).

128 Supply of information for the registerE+W+S

(1)An Order under section 125 may require adoption agencies to give prescribed information to the Secretary of State or the registration organisation for entry in the register.

(2)Information is to be given to the Secretary of State or the registration organisation when required by the Order and in the prescribed form and manner.

(3)An Order under section 125 may require an agency giving information which is entered on the register to pay a prescribed fee to the Secretary of State or the registration organisation.

(4)But an adoption agency is not to disclose any information to the Secretary of State or the registration organisation—

(a)about prospective adopters who are suitable to adopt a child, or persons who were included in the register as such prospective adopters, without their consent,

(b)about children suitable for adoption, or persons who were included in the register as such children, without the consent of the prescribed person.

(5)Consent under subsection (4) is to be given in the prescribed form.

129 Disclosure of informationE+W+S

(1)Information entered in the register, or compiled from information entered in the register, may only be disclosed under subsection (2) or (3).

(2)Prescribed information entered in the register may be disclosed by the Secretary of State or the registration organisation—

(a)where an adoption agency is acting on behalf of a child who is suitable for adoption, to the agency to assist in finding prospective adopters with whom it would be appropriate for the child to be placed,

(b)where an adoption agency is acting on behalf of prospective adopters who are suitable to adopt a child, to the agency to assist in finding a child appropriate for adoption by them.

(3)Prescribed information entered in the register, or compiled from information entered in the register, may be disclosed by the Secretary of State or the registration organisation to any prescribed person for use for statistical or research purposes, or for other prescribed purposes.

(4)An Order under section 125 may prescribe the steps to be taken by adoption agencies in respect of information received by them by virtue of subsection (2).

(5)Subsection (1) does not apply —

(a)to a disclosure of information with the authority of the Secretary of State, or

(b)to a disclosure by the registration organisation of prescribed information to the Scottish Ministers (if the register applies to Scotland) or the Assembly (if the register applies to Wales).

(6)Information disclosed to any person under subsection (2) or (3) may be given on any prescribed terms or conditions.

(7)An Order under section 125 may, in prescribed circumstances, require a prescribed fee to be paid to the Secretary of State or the registration organisation—

(a)by a prescribed adoption agency in respect of information disclosed under subsection (2), or

(b)by a person to whom information is disclosed under subsection (3).

(8)If any information entered in the register is disclosed to a person in contravention of subsection (1), the person disclosing it is guilty of an offence.

(9)A person guilty of an offence under subsection (8) is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

130 Territorial applicationE+W+S

(1)In this group of sections, “adoption agency” means—

(a)a local authority in England,

(b)a registered adoption society whose principal office is in England.

(2)An Order under section 125 may provide for any requirements imposed on adoption agencies in respect of the register to apply—

(a)to Scottish local authorities and to voluntary organisations providing a registered adoption service,

(b)to local authorities in Wales and to registered adoption societies whose principal offices are in Wales,

and, in relation to the register, references to adoption agencies in this group of sections include any authorities or societies mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (b) to which an Order under that section applies those requirements.

(3)For the purposes of this group of sections, references to the register applying to Scotland or Wales are to those requirements applying as mentioned in paragraph (a) or, as the case may be, (b) of subsection (2).

(4)An Order under section 125 may apply any provision made by virtue of section 127—

(a)to Scottish local authorities and to voluntary organisations providing a registered adoption service,

(b)to local authorities in Wales and to registered adoption societies whose principal offices are in Wales.

(5)For the purposes of this group of sections, references to any payment agency provision applying to Scotland or Wales are to provision made by virtue of section 127 applying as mentioned in paragraph (a) or, as the case may be, (b) of subsection (4).

131 SupplementaryE+W+S

(1)In this group of sections—

(a)organisation” includes a public body and a private or voluntary organisation,

(b)prescribed” means prescribed by an Order under section 125,

(c)the register” means the Adoption and Children Act Register,

(d)Scottish local authority” means a local authority within the meaning of the Regulation of Care (Scotland) Act 2001 (asp 4),

(e)voluntary organisation providing a registered adoption service” has the same meaning as in section 144(3).

(2)For the purposes of this group of sections—

(a)a child is suitable for adoption if an adoption agency is satisfied that the child ought to be placed for adoption,

(b)prospective adopters are suitable to adopt a child if an adoption agency is satisfied that they are suitable to have a child placed with them for adoption.

(3)Nothing authorised or required to be done by virtue of this group of sections constitutes an offence under section 93, 94 or 95.

(4)No recommendation to make an Order under section 125 is to be made to Her Majesty in Council unless a draft has been laid before and approved by resolution of each House of Parliament.

(5)If any provision made by an Order under section 125 would, if it were included in an Act of the Scottish Parliament, be within the legislative competence of that Parliament, no recommendation to make the Order is to be made to Her Majesty in Council unless a draft has been laid before, and approved by resolution of, the Parliament.

(6)No recommendation to make an Order under section 125 containing any provision in respect of the register is to be made to Her Majesty in Council if the register applies to Wales or the Order would provide for the register to apply to Wales, unless a draft has been laid before, and approved by resolution of, the Assembly.

(7)No recommendation to make an Order under section 125 containing any provision by virtue of section 127 is to be made to Her Majesty in Council if any payment agency provision applies to Wales or the Order would provide for any payment agency provision to apply to Wales, unless a draft has been laid before, and approved by resolution of, the Assembly.

Other miscellaneous provisionsE+W+S+N.I.

Prospective

132 Amendment of Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978: contravention of sections 30 to 36 of this ActE+W+S+N.I.

After section 29 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) there is inserted—

29A Contravention of sections 30 to 36 of Adoption and Children Act 2002

(1)A person who contravenes any of the enactments specified in subsection (2) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both.

(2)Those enactments are—

(a)section 30(1), (2) and (3) (removal of child placed or who may be placed for adoption),

(b)sections 32(2)(b), 33(2) and 35(2) (return of child by prospective adopters),

(c)section 34(1) (removal of child in contravention of placement order),

(d)section 36(1) (removal of child in non-agency case), and

(e)section 36(5) (return of child to parent or guardian),

of the Adoption and Children Act 2002.

Prospective

133 Scottish restriction on bringing children into or out of United KingdomE+W+S+N.I.

(1)In section 50 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (restriction on removal of children for adoption outside Great Britain)—

(a)in subsection (1), “not being a parent or guardian or relative of the child” is omitted,

(b)after subsection (3) there is inserted—

(4)The Scottish Ministers may by regulations provide for subsection (1) to apply with modifications, or not to apply, if—

(a)the prospective adopters are parents, relatives or guardians of the child (or one of them is), or

(b)the prospective adopter is a step-parent of the child,

and any conditions prescribed by the regulations are met.

(5)On the occasion of the first exercise of the power to make regulations under subsection (4)—

(a)the regulations shall not be made unless a draft of the regulations has been approved by a resolution of the Scottish Parliament, and

(b)accordingly section 60(2) does not apply to the statutory instrument containing the regulations.

(2)For section 50A of that Act (restriction on bringing children into the United Kingdom for adoption) there is substituted—

50A Restriction on bringing children into the United Kingdom

(1)This section applies where a person who is habitually resident in the British Islands (the “British resident”)—

(a)brings, or causes another to bring, a child who is habitually resident outside the British Islands into the United Kingdom for the purpose of adoption by the British resident; or

(b)at any time brings, or causes another to bring, into the United Kingdom a child adopted by the British resident under an external adoption effected within the period of six months ending with that time.

(2)In subsection (1) above the references to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident include a reference to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident and another person.

(3)This section does not apply if the child is intended to be adopted under a Convention adoption order.

(4)An external adoption means an adoption, other than a Convention adoption, of a child effected under the law of any country or territory outside the British Islands, whether or not the adoption is—

(a)an adoption within the meaning of Part IV; or

(b)a full adoption (as defined in section 39(2A)).

(5)Regulations may require a person intending to bring, or to cause another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies—

(a)to apply to an adoption agency in the prescribed manner for an assessment of his suitability to adopt the child; and

(b)to give the agency any information it may require for the purpose of the assessment.

(6)Regulations may require prescribed conditions to be met in respect of a child brought into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies.

(7)In relation to a child brought into the United Kingdom for adoption in circumstances where this section applies, regulations may provide for any provision of Part II of this Act to apply with modifications or not to apply.

(8)If a person brings, or causes another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom at any time in circumstances where this section applies, he is guilty of an offence if—

(a)he has not complied with any requirement imposed by virtue of subsection (5); or

(b)any condition required to be met by virtue of subsection (6) is not met,

before that time, or before any later time which may be prescribed.

(9)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a)on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or both;

(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months, or a fine, or both.

(10)Regulations may provide for this section not to apply if—

(a)the adopters or (as the case may be) prospective adopters are natural parents (whether or not they have parental responsibilities or parental rights in relation to the child), natural relatives or guardians of the child in question (or one of them is), or

(b)the British resident in question is a step-parent of the child,

and any prescribed conditions are met.

(11)On the occasion of the first exercise of the power to make regulations under subsection (10)—

(a)the regulations shall not be made unless a draft of the regulations has been approved by a resolution of the Scottish Parliament, and

(b)accordingly section 60(2) does not apply to the statutory instrument containing the regulations.

(12)In this section, “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations and “regulations” means regulations made by the Scottish Ministers.

(3)In section 65 of that Act (interpretation), in subsection (1), in the definition of “adoption agency”, for “and 27” there is substituted “ , 27 and 50A ”.

Prospective

134 Amendment of Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978: overseas adoptionsE+W+S+N.I.

In section 65 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) (interpretation), for subsection (2) there is substituted—

(2)In this Act, “overseas adoption” —

(a)means an adoption of a description specified in an order made by the Scottish Ministers, being a description of adoptions effected under the law of any country or territory outside the British Islands, but

(b)does not include a Convention adoption.

(2A)The Scottish Ministers may by regulations prescribe the requirements that ought to be met by an adoption of any description effected after the commencement of the regulations for it to be an overseas adoption for the purposes of this Act.

(2B)At any time when such regulations have effect, the Scottish Ministers must exercise their power under subsection (2) so as to secure that subsequently effected adoptions of any description are not overseas adoptions for the purposes of this Act if they consider that such adoptions are not likely within a reasonable time to meet the prescribed requirements.

(2C)An order under subsection (2) may contain provision as to the manner in which evidence of any overseas adoption may be given.

(2D)In subsections (2) to (2C), “adoption” means the adoption of a child or of a person who was a child at the time the adoption was applied for.

Prospective

135 Adoption and fostering: criminal recordsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Part 5 of the Police Act 1997 (c. 50) (certificates of criminal records) is amended as follows.

(2)In section 113 (criminal record certificates), in subsection (3A), for “his suitability” there is substituted “ the suitability of the applicant, or of a person living in the same household as the applicant, to be a foster parent or ”.

(3)In section 115 (enhanced criminal record certificates), in subsection (6A), for “his suitability” there is substituted “ the suitability of the applicant, or of a person living in the same household as the applicant, to be a foster parent or ”.

136 Payment of grants in connection with welfare servicesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Section 93 of the Local Government Act 2000 (c. 22) (payment of grants for welfare services) is amended as follows.

(2)In subsection (1) (payment of grants by the Secretary of State), for the words from “in providing” to the end there is substituted—

(a)in providing, or contributing to the provision of, such welfare services as may be determined by the Secretary of State, or

(b)in connection with any such welfare services.

(3)In subsection (2) (payment of grants by the Assembly), for the words from “in providing” to the end there is substituted—

(a)in providing, or contributing to the provision of, such welfare services as may be determined by the Assembly, or

(b)in connection with any such welfare services.

(4)After subsection (6) there is inserted—

(6A)Before making any determination under subsection (3) or (5) the Secretary of State must obtain the consent of the Treasury.

Prospective

137 Extension of the Hague Convention to British overseas territoriesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Her Majesty may by Order in Council provide for giving effect to the Convention in any British overseas territory.

(2)An Order in Council under subsection (1) in respect of any British overseas territory may, in particular, make any provision corresponding to provision which in relation to any part of Great Britain is made by the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999 (c. 18) or may be made by regulations under section 1 of that Act.

(3)The British Nationality Act 1981 (c. 61) is amended as follows.

(4)In section 1 (acquisition of British citizenship by birth or adoption)—

(a)in subsection (5), at the end of paragraph (b) there is inserted “ effected under the law of a country or territory outside the United Kingdom ”,

(b)at the end of subsection (5A)(b) there is inserted “ or in a designated territory ”,

(c)in subsection (8), the words following “section 50” are omitted.

(5)In section 15 (acquisition of British overseas territories citizenship)—

(a)after subsection (5) there is inserted—

(5A)Where—

(a)a minor who is not a British overseas territories citizen is adopted under a Convention adoption,

(b)on the date on which the adoption is effected—

(i)the adopter or, in the case of a joint adoption, one of the adopters is a British overseas territories citizen, and

(ii)the adopter or, in the case of a joint adoption, both of the adopters are habitually resident in a designated territory, and

(c)the Convention adoption is effected under the law of a country or territory outside the designated territory,

the minor shall be a British overseas territories citizen as from that date.,

(b)in subsection (6), after “order” there is inserted “ or a Convention adoption ”.

(6)In section 50 (interpretation), in subsection (1)—

(a)after the definition of “company” there is inserted—

Convention adoption” means an adoption effected under the law of a country or territory in which the Convention is in force, and certified in pursuance of Article 23(1) of the Convention,

(b)after the definition of “Crown service under the government of the United Kingdom” there is inserted—

designated territory” means a qualifying territory, or the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia, which is designated by Her Majesty by Order in Council under subsection (14).

(7)After subsection (13) of that section there is inserted—

(14)For the purposes of the definition of “designated territory” in subsection (1), an Order in Council may—

(a)designate any qualifying territory, or the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia, if the Convention is in force there, and

(b)make different designations for the purposes of section 1 and section 15;

and, for the purposes of this subsection and the definition of “Convention adoption” in subsection (1), “the Convention” means the Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in respect of Intercountry Adoption, concluded at the Hague on 29th May 1993.

An Order in Council under this subsection shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

Prospective

138 Proceedings in Great BritainE+W+S+N.I.

Proceedings for an offence by virtue of section 9, 59, 93, 94, 95 or 129—

(a)may not be brought more than six years after the commission of the offence but, subject to that,

(b)may be brought within a period of six months from the date on which evidence sufficient in the opinion of the prosecutor to warrant the proceedings came to his knowledge.

In relation to Scotland, “the prosecutor” is to be read as “the procurator fiscal”.

Prospective

Amendments etc.E+W+S+N.I.

139 Amendments, transitional and transitory provisions, savings and repealsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Schedule 3 (minor and consequential amendments) is to have effect.

(2)Schedule 4 (transitional and transitory provisions and savings) is to have effect.

(3)The enactments set out in Schedule 5 are repealed to the extent specified.

Chapter 2 E+W+S+N.I.Final provisions

140 Orders, rules and regulationsE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Any power to make subordinate legislation conferred by this Act on the Lord Chancellor, the Secretary of State, the Scottish Ministers, the Assembly or the Registrar General is exercisable by statutory instrument.

(2)A statutory instrument containing subordinate legislation made under any provision of this Act (other than section 14 or 148 or an instrument to which subsection (3) applies) is to be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(3)A statutory instrument containing subordinate legislation—

(a)under section 9 which includes provision made by virtue of section 45(2),

(b)under section 92(6), 94 or 123(6), or

(c)which adds to, replaces or omits any part of the text of an Act,

is not to be made unless a draft of the instrument has been laid before, and approved by resolution of, each House of Parliament.

(4)Subsections (2) and (3) do not apply to an Order in Council or to subordinate legislation made—

(a)by the Scottish Ministers, or

(b)by the Assembly, unless made jointly by the Secretary of State and the Assembly.

(5)A statutory instrument containing regulations under section 63(2) made by the Scottish Ministers is to be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of the Scottish Parliament.

(6)The power of the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety to make regulations under section 63(2) is to be exercisable by statutory rule for the purposes of the Statutory Rules (Northern Ireland) Order 1979 (S.I. 1979/ 1573 (N.I. 12)); and any such regulations are to be subject to negative resolution within the meaning of section 41(6) of the Interpretation Act (Northern Ireland) 1954 (c. 33 (N.I.)) as if they were statutory instruments within the meaning of that Act.

(7)Subordinate legislation made under this Act may make different provision for different purposes.

(8)A power to make subordinate legislation under this Act (as well as being exercisable in relation to all cases to which it extends) may be exercised in relation to—

(a)those cases subject to specified exceptions, or

(b)a particular case or class of case.

(9)In this section, “subordinate legislation” does not include a direction.

141 Rules of procedureE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The Lord Chancellor may make rules in respect of any matter to be prescribed by rules made by virtue of this Act and dealing generally with all matters of procedure.

(2)Subsection (1) does not apply in relation to proceedings before magistrates’ courts, but the power to make rules conferred by section 144 of the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 (c. 43) includes power to make provision in respect of any of the matters mentioned in that subsection.

(3)In the case of an application for a placement order, for the variation or revocation of such an order, or for an adoption order, the rules must require any person mentioned in subsection (4) to be notified—

(a)of the date and place where the application will be heard, and

(b)of the fact that, unless the person wishes or the court requires, the person need not attend.

(4)The persons referred to in subsection (3) are—

(a)in the case of a placement order, every person who can be found whose consent to the making of the order is required under subsection (3)(a) of section 21 (or would be required but for subsection (3)(b) of that section) or, if no such person can be found, any relative prescribed by rules who can be found,

(b)in the case of a variation or revocation of a placement order, every person who can be found whose consent to the making of the placement order was required under subsection (3)(a) of section 21 (or would have been required but for subsection (3)(b) of that section),

(c)in the case of an adoption order—

(i)every person who can be found whose consent to the making of the order is required under subsection (2)(a) of section 47 (or would be required but for subsection (2)(c) of that section) or, if no such person can be found, any relative prescribed by rules who can be found,

(ii)every person who has consented to the making of the order under section 20 (and has not withdrawn the consent) unless he has given a notice under subsection (4)(a) of that section which has effect,

(iii)every person who, if leave were given under section 47(5), would be entitled to oppose the making of the order.

(5)Rules made in respect of magistrates’ courts may provide—

(a)for enabling any fact tending to establish the identity of a child with a child to whom a document relates to be proved by affidavit, and

(b)for excluding or restricting in relation to any facts that may be so proved the power of a justice of the peace to compel the attendance of witnesses.

142 Supplementary and consequential provisionE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The appropriate Minister may by order make—

(a)any supplementary, incidental or consequential provision,

(b)any transitory, transitional or saving provision,

which he considers necessary or expedient for the purposes of, in consequence of or for giving full effect to any provision of this Act.

(2)For the purposes of subsection (1), where any provision of an order extends to England and Wales, and Scotland or Northern Ireland, the appropriate Minister in relation to the order is the Secretary of State.

(3)Before making an order under subsection (1) containing provision which would, if included in an Act of the Scottish Parliament, be within the legislative competence of that Parliament, the appropriate Minister must consult the Scottish Ministers.

(4)Subsection (5) applies to any power of the Lord Chancellor, the Secretary of State or the Assembly to make regulations, rules or an order by virtue of any other provision of this Act or of Her Majesty to make an Order in Council by virtue of section 125.

(5)The power may be exercised so as to make—

(a)any supplementary, incidental or consequential provision,

(b)any transitory, transitional or saving provision,

which the person exercising the power considers necessary or expedient.

(6)The provision which may be made under subsection (1) or (5) includes provision modifying Schedule 4 or amending or repealing any enactment or instrument.

In relation to an Order in Council, “enactment” in this subsection includes an enactment comprised in, or in an instrument made under, an Act of the Scottish Parliament.

(7)The power of the Registrar General to make regulations under Chapter 5 of Part 1 may, with the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, be exercised so as to make—

(a)any supplementary, incidental or consequential provision,

(b)any transitory, transitional or saving provision,

which the Registrar General considers necessary or expedient.

143 Offences by bodies corporate and unincorporated bodiesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)Where an offence under this Act committed by a body corporate is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to be attributable to any neglect on the part of, any director, manager, secretary or other similar officer of the body, or a person purporting to act in any such capacity, that person as well as the body is guilty of the offence and liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

(2)Where the affairs of a body corporate are managed by its members, subsection (1) applies in relation to the acts and defaults of a member in connection with his functions of management as it applies to a director of a body corporate.

(3)Proceedings for an offence alleged to have been committed under this Act by an unincorporated body are to be brought in the name of that body (and not in that of any of its members) and, for the purposes of any such proceedings in England and Wales or Northern Ireland, any rules of court relating to the service of documents have effect as if that body were a corporation.

(4)A fine imposed on an unincorporated body on its conviction of an offence under this Act is to be paid out of the funds of that body.

(5)If an unincorporated body is charged with an offence under this Act—

(a)in England and Wales, section 33 of the Criminal Justice Act 1925 (c. 86) and Schedule 3 to the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 (c. 43) (procedure on charge of an offence against a corporation),

(b)in Northern Ireland, section 18 of the Criminal Justice Act (Northern Ireland) 1945 (c. 15 (N.I.)) and Schedule 4 to the Magistrates’ Courts (Northern Ireland) Order 1981 (S.I. 1981/1675 (N.I. 26)) (procedure on charge of an offence against a corporation),

have effect in like manner as in the case of a corporation so charged.

(6)Where an offence under this Act committed by an unincorporated body (other than a partnership) is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to be attributable to any neglect on the part of, any officer of the body or any member of its governing body, he as well as the body is guilty of the offence and liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

(7)Where an offence under this Act committed by a partnership is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to be attributable to any neglect on the part of, a partner, he as well as the partnership is guilty of the offence and liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

144 General interpretation etc.E+W+S+N.I.

(1)In this Act—

  • appropriate Minister” means—

    (a)

    in relation to England, Scotland or Northern Ireland, the Secretary of State,

    (b)

    in relation to Wales, the Assembly,

    and in relation to England and Wales means the Secretary of State and the Assembly acting jointly,

  • the Assembly” means the National Assembly for Wales,

  • body” includes an unincorporated body,

  • by virtue of” includes “by” and “under”,

  • child”, except where used to express a relationship, means a person who has not attained the age of 18 years,

  • the Convention” means the Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in respect of Intercountry Adoption, concluded at the Hague on 29th May 1993,

  • Convention adoption order” means an adoption order which, by virtue of regulations under section 1 of the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999 (c. 18) (regulations giving effect to the Convention), is made as a Convention adoption order,

  • Convention country” means a country or territory in which the Convention is in force,

  • court” means, subject to any provision made by virtue of Part 1 of Schedule 11 to the 1989 Act, the High Court, a county court or a magistrates’ court,

  • enactment” includes an enactment comprised in subordinate legislation,

  • fee” includes expenses,

  • guardian” has the same meaning as in the 1989 Act and includes a special guardian within the meaning of that Act,

  • information” means information recorded in any form,

  • local authority” means any unitary authority, or any county council so far as they are not a unitary authority,

  • Northern Irish adoption agency” means an adoption agency within the meaning of Article 3 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)),

  • Northern Irish adoption order” means an order made, or having effect as if made, under Article 12 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987,

  • notice” means a notice in writing,

  • registration authority” (in Part 1) has the same meaning as in the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14),

  • regulations” means regulations made by the appropriate Minister, unless they are required to be made by the Lord Chancellor, the Secretary of State or the Registrar General,

  • relative”, in relation to a child, means a grandparent, brother, sister, uncle or aunt, whether of the full blood or half-blood or by marriage,

  • rules” means rules made under section 141(1) or made by virtue of section 141(2) under section 144 of the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 (c. 43),

  • Scottish adoption order” means an order made, or having effect as if made, under section 12 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28),

  • subordinate legislation” has the same meaning as in the Interpretation Act 1978 (c. 30),

  • unitary authority” means—

    (a)

    the council of any county so far as they are the council for an area for which there are no district councils,

    (b)

    the council of any district comprised in an area for which there is no county council,

    (c)

    the council of a county borough,

    (d)

    the council of a London borough,

    (e)

    the Common Council of the City of London.

(2)Any power conferred by this Act to prescribe a fee by Order in Council or regulations includes power to prescribe—

(a)a fee not exceeding a prescribed amount,

(b)a fee calculated in accordance with the Order or, as the case may be, regulations,

(c)a fee determined by the person to whom it is payable, being a fee of a reasonable amount.

(3)In this Act, “Scottish adoption agency” means—

(a)a local authority, or

(b)a voluntary organisation providing a registered adoption service;

but in relation to the provision of any particular service, references to a Scottish adoption agency do not include a voluntary organisation unless it is registered in respect of that service or a service which, in Scotland, corresponds to that service.

Expressions used in this subsection have the same meaning as in the Regulation of Care (Scotland) Act 2001 (asp 4) and “registered” means registered under Part 1 of that Act.

(4)In this Act, a couple means—

(a)a married couple, or

(b)two people (whether of different sexes or the same sex) living as partners in an enduring family relationship.

(5)Subsection (4)(b) does not include two people one of whom is the other’s parent, grandparent, sister, brother, aunt or uncle.

(6)References to relationships in subsection (5)—

(a)are to relationships of the full blood or half blood or, in the case of an adopted person, such of those relationships as would exist but for adoption, and

(b)include the relationship of a child with his adoptive, or former adoptive, parents,

but do not include any other adoptive relationships.

(7)For the purposes of this Act, a person is the partner of a child’s parent if the person and the parent are a couple but the person is not the child’s parent.

145 Devolution: WalesE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The references to the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) and to the 1989 Act in Schedule 1 to the National Assembly for Wales (Transfer of Functions) Order 1999 (S.I. 1999/672) are to be treated as referring to those Acts as amended by virtue of this Act.

(2)This section does not affect the power to make further Orders varying or omitting those references.

(3)In Schedule 1 to that Order, in the entry for the Adoption Act 1976, “9” is omitted.

(4)The functions exercisable by the Assembly under sections 9 and 9A of the Adoption Act 1976 (by virtue of paragraphs 4 and 5 of Schedule 4 to this Act) are to be treated for the purposes of section 44 of the Government of Wales Act 1998 (c. 38) (parliamentary procedures for subordinate legislation) as if made exercisable by the Assembly by an Order in Council under section 22 of that Act.

146 ExpensesE+W+S+N.I.

There shall be paid out of money provided by Parliament—

(a)any expenditure incurred by a Minister of the Crown by virtue of this Act,

(b)any increase attributable to this Act in the sums payable out of money so provided under any other enactment.

147 GlossaryE+W+S+N.I.

Schedule 6 (glossary) is to have effect.

148 CommencementE+W+S+N.I.

(1)This Act (except sections 116 and 136, this Chapter and the provisions mentioned in subsections (5) and (6)) is to come into force on such day as the Secretary of State may by order appoint.

(2)Before making an order under subsection (1) (other than an order bringing paragraph 53 of Schedule 3 into force) the Secretary of State must consult the Assembly.

(3)Before making an order under subsection (1) bringing sections 123 and 124 into force, the Secretary of State must also consult the Scottish Ministers and the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety.

(4)Before making an order under subsection (1) bringing sections 125 to 131 into force, the Secretary of State must also consult the Scottish Ministers.

(5)The following are to come into force on such day as the Scottish Ministers may by order appoint—

(a)section 41(5) to (9), so far as relating to Scotland,

(b)sections 132 to 134,

(c)paragraphs 21 to 35 and 82 to 84 of Schedule 3,

(d)paragraphs 15 and 23 of Schedule 4,

(e)the entries in Schedule 5, so far as relating to the provisions mentioned in paragraphs (c) and (d),

(f)section 139, so far as relating to the provisions mentioned in the preceding paragraphs.

(6)Sections 2(6), 3(3) and (4), 4 to 17, 27(3), 53(1) to (3), 54, 56 to 65 and 98, paragraphs 13, 65, 66 and 111 to 113 of Schedule 3 and paragraphs 3 and 5 of Schedule 4 are to come into force on such day as the appropriate Minister may by order appoint.

149 ExtentE+W+S+N.I.

(1)The amendment or repeal of an enactment has the same extent as the enactment to which it relates.

(2)Subject to that and to the following provisions, this Act except section 137 extends to England and Wales only.

(3)The following extend also to Scotland and Northern Ireland—

(a)sections 63(2) to (5), 65(2)(a) and (b) and (3), 123 and 124,

(b)this Chapter, except sections 141 and 145.

(4)The following extend also to Scotland—

(a)section 41(5) to (9),

(b)sections 125 to 131,

(c)section 138,

(d)section 139, so far as relating to provisions extending to Scotland.

(5)In Schedule 4, paragraph 23 extends only to Scotland.

150 Short titleE+W+S+N.I.

This Act may be cited as the Adoption and Children Act 2002.

SCHEDULES

Prospective

Section 77(6)

SCHEDULE 1E+WRegistration of adoptions

Registration of adoption ordersE+W

1(1)Every adoption order must contain a direction to the Registrar General to make in the Adopted Children Register an entry in the form prescribed by regulations made by the Registrar General with the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

(2)Where, on an application to a court for an adoption order in respect of a child, the identity of the child with a child to whom an entry in the registers of live-births or other records relates is proved to the satisfaction of the court, any adoption order made in pursuance of the application must contain a direction to the Registrar General to secure that the entry in the register or, as the case may be, record in question is marked with the word “Adopted”.

(3)Where an adoption order is made in respect of a child who has previously been the subject of an adoption order made by a court in England or Wales under Part 1 of this Act or any other enactment—

(a)sub-paragraph (2) does not apply, and

(b)the order must contain a direction to the Registrar General to mark the previous entry in the Adopted Children Register with the word “Re-adopted”.

(4)Where an adoption order is made, the prescribed officer of the court which made the order must communicate the order to the Registrar General in the prescribed manner; and the Registrar General must then comply with the directions contained in the order.

Prescribed” means prescribed by rules.

Registration of adoptions in Scotland, Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Channel IslandsE+W

2(1)Sub-paragraphs (2) and (3) apply where the Registrar General is notified by the authority maintaining a register of adoptions in a part of the British Islands outside England and Wales that an order has been made in that part authorising the adoption of a child.

(2)If an entry in the registers of live-births or other records (and no entry in the Adopted Children Register) relates to the child, the Registrar General must secure that the entry is marked with—

(a)the word “Adopted”, followed by

(b)the name, in brackets, of the part in which the order was made.

(3)If an entry in the Adopted Children Register relates to the child, the Registrar General must mark the entry with—

(a)the word “Re-adopted”, followed by

(b)the name, in brackets, of the part in which the order was made.

(4)Where, after an entry in either of the registers or other records mentioned in sub-paragraphs (2) and (3) has been so marked, the Registrar General is notified by the authority concerned that—

(a)the order has been quashed,

(b)an appeal against the order has been allowed, or

(c)the order has been revoked,

the Registrar General must secure that the marking is cancelled.

(5)A copy or extract of an entry in any register or other record, being an entry the marking of which is cancelled under sub-paragraph (4), is not to be treated as an accurate copy unless both the marking and the cancellation are omitted from it.

Registration of other adoptionsE+W

3(1)If the Registrar General is satisfied, on an application under this paragraph, that he has sufficient particulars relating to a child adopted under a registrable foreign adoption to enable an entry to be made in the Adopted Children Register for the child he must make the entry accordingly.

(2)If he is also satisfied that an entry in the registers of live-births or other records relates to the child, he must—

(a)secure that the entry is marked “Adopted”, followed by the name, in brackets, of the country in which the adoption was effected, or

(b)where appropriate, secure that the overseas registers of births are so marked.

(3)An application under this paragraph must be made, in the prescribed manner, by a prescribed person and the applicant must provide the prescribed documents and other information.

(4)An entry made in the Adopted Children Register by virtue of this paragraph must be made in the prescribed form.

(5)In this Schedule “registrable foreign adoption” means an adoption which satisfies prescribed requirements and is either—

(a)adoption under a Convention adoption, or

(b)adoption under an overseas adoption.

(6)In this paragraph—

(a)prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Registrar General with the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer,

(b)overseas register of births” includes—

(i)a register made under regulations made by the Secretary of State under section 41(1)(g), (h) or (i) of the British Nationality Act 1981 (c. 61),

(ii)a record kept under an Order in Council made under section 1 of the Registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages (Special Provisions) Act 1957 (c. 58) (other than a certified copy kept by the Registrar General).

Amendment of orders and rectification of Registers and other recordsE+W

4(1)The court by which an adoption order has been made may, on the application of the adopter or the adopted person, amend the order by the correction of any error in the particulars contained in it.

(2)The court by which an adoption order has been made may, if satisfied on the application of the adopter or the adopted person that within the period of one year beginning with the date of the order any new name—

(a)has been given to the adopted person (whether in baptism or otherwise), or

(b)has been taken by the adopted person,

either in place of or in addition to a name specified in the particulars required to be entered in the Adopted Children Register in pursuance of the order, amend the order by substituting or, as the case may be, adding that name in those particulars.

(3)The court by which an adoption order has been made may, if satisfied on the application of any person concerned that a direction for the marking of an entry in the registers of live-births, the Adopted Children Register or other records included in the order in pursuance of paragraph 1(2) or (3) was wrongly so included, revoke that direction.

(4)Where an adoption order is amended or a direction revoked under sub-paragraphs (1) to (3), the prescribed officer of the court must communicate the amendment in the prescribed manner to the Registrar General.

Prescribed” means prescribed by rules.

(5)The Registrar General must then—

(a)amend the entry in the Adopted Children Register accordingly, or

(b)secure that the marking of the entry in the registers of live-births, the Adopted Children Register or other records is cancelled,

as the case may be.

(6)Where an adoption order is quashed or an appeal against an adoption order allowed by any court, the court must give directions to the Registrar General to secure that—

(a)any entry in the Adopted Children Register, and

(b)any marking of an entry in that Register, the registers of live-births or other records as the case may be, which was effected in pursuance of the order,

is cancelled.

(7)Where an adoption order has been amended, any certified copy of the relevant entry in the Adopted Children Register which may be issued pursuant to section 78(2)(b) must be a copy of the entry as amended, without the reproduction of—

(a)any note or marking relating to the amendment, or

(b)any matter cancelled in pursuance of it.

(8)A copy or extract of an entry in any register or other record, being an entry the marking of which has been cancelled, is not to be treated as an accurate copy unless both the marking and the cancellation are omitted from it.

(9)If the Registrar General is satisfied—

(a)that a registrable foreign adoption has ceased to have effect, whether on annulment or otherwise, or

(b)that any entry or mark was erroneously made in pursuance of paragraph 3 in the Adopted Children Register, the registers of live-births, the overseas registers of births or other records,

he may secure that such alterations are made in those registers or other records as he considers are required in consequence of the adoption ceasing to have effect or to correct the error.

Overseas register of births” has the same meaning as in paragraph 3.

(10)Where an entry in such a register is amended in pursuance of sub-paragraph (9), any copy or extract of the entry is not to be treated as accurate unless it shows the entry as amended but without indicating that it has been amended.

Marking of entries on re-registration of birth on legitimationE+W

5(1)Without prejudice to paragraphs 2(4) and 4(5), where, after an entry in the registers of live-births or other records has been marked in accordance with paragraph 1 or 2, the birth is re-registered under section 14 of the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (c. 20) (re-registration of births of legitimated persons), the entry made on the re-registration must be marked in the like manner.

(2)Without prejudice to paragraph 4(9), where an entry in the registers of live-births or other records is marked in pursuance of paragraph 3 and the birth in question is subsequently re-registered under section 14 of that Act, the entry made on re-registration must be marked in the like manner.

Cancellations in registers on legitimationE+W

6(1)This paragraph applies where an adoption order is revoked under section 55(1).

(2)The prescribed officer of the court must communicate the revocation in the prescribed manner to the Registrar General who must then cancel or secure the cancellation of—

(a)the entry in the Adopted Children Register relating to the adopted person, and

(b)the marking with the word “Adopted” of any entry relating to the adopted person in the registers of live-births or other records.

Prescribed” means prescribed by rules.

(3)A copy or extract of an entry in any register or other record, being an entry the marking of which is cancelled under this paragraph, is not to be treated as an accurate copy unless both the marking and the cancellation are omitted from it.

Prospective

Section 79(6)

SCHEDULE 2E+WDisclosure of birth records by Registrar General

1On an application made in the prescribed manner by an adopted person—E+W

(a)a record of whose birth is kept by the Registrar General, and

(b)who has attained the age of 18 years,

the Registrar General must give the applicant any information necessary to enable the applicant to obtain a certified copy of the record of his birth.

Prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Registrar General with the approval of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

2(1)Before giving any information to an applicant under paragraph 1, the Registrar General must inform the applicant that counselling services are available to the applicant—E+W

(a)from a registered adoption society, an organisation within section 144(3)(b) or an adoption society which is registered under Article 4 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22)),

(b)if the applicant is in England and Wales, at the General Register Office or from any local authority or registered adoption support agency,

(c)if the applicant is in Scotland, from any council constituted under section 2 of the Local Government etc. (Scotland) Act 1994 (c. 39),

(d)if the applicant is in Northern Ireland, from any Board.

(2)In sub-paragraph (1)(b), “registered adoption support agency” means an adoption support agency in respect of which a person is registered under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14).

(3)In sub-paragraph (1)(d), “Board” means a Health and Social Services Board established under Article 16 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1972 (S.I. 1972/1265 (N.I. 14)); but where the functions of a Board are exercisable by a Health and Social Services Trust, references in that sub-paragraph to a Board are to be read as references to the Health and Social Services Trust.

(4)If the applicant chooses to receive counselling from a person or body within sub-paragraph (1), the Registrar General must send to the person or body the information to which the applicant is entitled under paragraph 1.

3(1)Where an adopted person who is in England and Wales—E+W

(a)applies for information under paragraph 1 or Article 54 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987, or

(b)is supplied with information under section 45 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28),

the persons and bodies mentioned in sub-paragraph (2) must, if asked by the applicant to do so, provide counselling for the applicant.

(2)Those persons and bodies are—

(a)the Registrar General,

(b)any local authority,

(c)a registered adoption society, an organisation within section 144(3)(b) or an adoption society which is registered under Article 4 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987.

4(1)Where a person—E+W

(a)was adopted before 12th November 1975, and

(b)applies for information under paragraph 1,

the Registrar General must not give the information to the applicant unless the applicant has attended an interview with a counsellor arranged by a person or body from whom counselling services are available as mentioned in paragraph 2.

(2)Where the Registrar General is prevented by sub-paragraph (1) from giving information to a person who is not living in the United Kingdom, the Registrar General may give the information to any body which—

(a)the Registrar General is satisfied is suitable to provide counselling to that person, and

(b)has notified the Registrar General that it is prepared to provide such counselling.

Prospective

Section 139

SCHEDULE 3E+W+S+N.I.Minor and consequential amendments

The Marriage Act 1949 (c. 76)E+W+S+N.I.

1Section 3 of the Marriage Act 1949 (marriage of person aged under eighteen) is amended as follows.

2In subsection (1), for “person or persons specified in subsection (1A) of this section” there is substituted “ appropriate persons ”.E+W+S+N.I.

3For subsection (1A) there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(1A)The appropriate persons are—

(a)if none of paragraphs (b) to (h) apply, each of the following—

(i)any parent of the child who has parental responsibility for him; and

(ii)any guardian of the child;

(b)where a special guardianship order is in force with respect to a child, each of the child’s special guardians, unless any of paragraphs (c) to (g) applies;

(c)where a care order has effect with respect to the child, the local authority designated in the order, and each parent, guardian or special guardian (in so far as their parental responsibility has not been restricted under section 33(3) of the Children Act 1989), unless paragraph (e) applies;

(d)where a residence order has effect with respect to the child, the persons with whom the child lives, or is to live, as a result of the order, unless paragraph (e) applies;

(e)where an adoption agency is authorised to place the child for adoption under section 19 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002, that agency or, where a care order has effect with respect to the child, the local authority designated in the order;

(f)where a placement order is in force with respect to the child, the appropriate local authority;

(g)where a child has been placed for adoption with prospective adopters, the prospective adopters (in so far as their parental responsibility has not been restricted under section 25(4) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002), in addition to those persons specified in paragraph (e) or (f);

(h)where none of paragraphs (b) to (g) apply but a residence order was in force with respect to the child immediately before he reached the age of sixteen, the persons with whom he lived, or was to live, as a result of the order.

4For subsection (1B) there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(1B)In this section—

  • guardian of a child”, “parental responsibility”, “residence order”, “special guardian”, “special guardianship order” and “care order” have the same meaning as in the Children Act 1989;

  • adoption agency”, “placed for adoption”, “placement order” and “local authority” have the same meaning as in the Adoption and Children Act 2002;

  • appropriate local authority” means the local authority authorised by the placement order to place the child for adoption.

5In subsection (2), for “The last foregoing subsection” there is substituted “ Subsection (1) ”.E+W+S+N.I.

The Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (c. 20)E+W+S+N.I.

6In section 10 of the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (registration of father where parents not married)—

(a)in subsection (1)(d)(i), for “a parental responsibility agreement made between them in relation to the child” there is substituted “ any agreement made between them under section 4(1)(b) of the Children Act 1989 in relation to the child ”,

(b)in subsection (1)(d)(ii), for “the Children Act 1989” there is substituted “ that Act ”,

(c)in subsection (3), the words following “the Family Law Reform Act 1987” are omitted.

7In section 10A of the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (re-registration of father where parents not married)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1)(d)(i), for “a parental responsibility agreement made between them in relation to the child” there is substituted “ any agreement made between them under section 4(1)(b) of the Children Act 1989 in relation to the child ”,

(b)in subsection (1)(d)(ii), for “the Children Act 1989” there is substituted “ that Act ”.

The Sexual Offences Act 1956 (c. 69)E+W+S+N.I.

8In section 28 of the Sexual Offences Act 1956 (causing or encouraging prostitution of, intercourse with, or indecent assault on, girl under sixteen), in subsection (4), the “or” at the end of paragraph (a) is omitted, and after that paragraph there is inserted—

(aa)a special guardianship order under that Act is in force with respect to her and he is not her special guardian; or.

The Health Services and Public Health Act 1968 (c. 46)E+W+S+N.I.

9The Health Services and Public Health Act 1968 is amended as follows.

10In section 64 (financial assistance by the Secretary of State to certain voluntary organisations), in subsection (3)(a)(xviii), for “the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

11In section 65 (financial and other assistance by local authorities to certain voluntary organisations), in subsection (3)(b), for “the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

The Local Authority Social Services Act 1970 (c. 42)E+W+S+N.I.

12The Local Authority Social Services Act 1970 is amended as follows.

13In section 7D (default powers of Secretary of State as respects social services functions of local authorities), in subsection (1), after “the Children Act 1989” there is inserted “ section 1 or 2(4) of the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999 or the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

14In Schedule 1 (enactments conferring functions assigned to social services committee)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)the entry relating to the Adoption Act 1976 is omitted,

(b)in the entry relating to the Children Act 1989, after “Consent to application for residence order in respect of child in care” there is inserted “ Functions relating to special guardianship orders ”,

(c)in the entry relating to the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999—

(i)in the first column, for “Section” there is substituted “ Sections 1 and ”,

(ii)in the second column, for “Article 9(a) to (c) of” there is substituted “ regulations made under section 1 giving effect to ” and at the end there is inserted “ and functions under Article 9(a) to (c) of the Convention ”,

and at the end of the Schedule there is inserted—

Adoption and Children Act 2002Maintenance of Adoption Service; functions of local authority as adoption agency.

The Immigration Act 1971 (c. 77)E+W+S+N.I.

15In section 33(1) of the Immigration Act 1971 (interpretation)—

(a)in the definition of “Convention adoption”, after “1978” there is inserted “ or in the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)in the definition of “legally adopted”, for “section 72(2) of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 87 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The Legitimacy Act 1976 (c. 31)E+W+S+N.I.

16The Legitimacy Act 1976 is amended as follows.

17In section 4 (legitimation of adopted child)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1), after “1976” there is inserted “ or section 67 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)in subsection (2)—

(i)in paragraph (a), after “39” there is inserted “ or subsection (3)(b) of the said section 67 ”,

(ii)in paragraph (b), after “1976” there is inserted “ or section 67, 68 or 69 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

18In section 6 (dispositions depending on date of birth), at the end of subsection (2) there is inserted “ or section 69(2) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

The Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36)E+W+S+N.I.

19In section 38 of the Adoption Act 1976 (meaning of “adoption” in Part 4), in subsection (2), after “1975” there is inserted “ but does not include an adoption of a kind mentioned in paragraphs (c) to (e) of subsection (1) effected on or after the day which is the appointed day for the purposes of Chapter 4 of Part 1 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The National Health Service Act 1977 (c. 49)E+W+S+N.I.

20In section 124A(3) of the National Health Service Act 1977 (information provided by the Registrar General to the Secretary of State), the “or” at the end of paragraph (a) is omitted and after that paragraph there is inserted—

(aa)entered in the Adopted Children Register maintained by the Registrar General under the Adoption and Children Act 2002; or.

The Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28)E+W+S+N.I.

21The Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 is amended as follows.

22In section 11 (restriction on arranging adoptions and placing of children)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (2)—

(i)for paragraph (a) there is substituted—

(a)a registered adoption society (within the meaning of section 2(2) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002);

and

(ii)for “section 1” there is substituted “ section 3(1) ”, and

(b)after subsection (2) there is inserted—

(2A)In relation to the provision of any particular service by an adoption society, the reference in subsection (2)(a) to a registered adoption society does not include a voluntary organisation unless it is registered under Part 2 of the Care Standards Act 2000 in respect of that service or a service which, in England, corresponds to that service.

23In section 16 (parental agreement to adoption order)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1), after paragraph (a) there is inserted—

(aa)each parent or guardian of the child has consented under section 20 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (advance consent to adoption), has not withdrawn the consent and does not oppose the making of the adoption order;

(ab)subsection (3A) applies and no parent or guardian of the child opposes the making of the adoption order,

and

(b)after subsection (3) there is inserted—

(3A)This subsection applies where—

(a)the child has been placed for adoption by an adoption agency (within the meaning of section 2(1) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002) with the prospective adopters in whose favour the adoption order is proposed to be made; and

(b)the child was placed for adoption—

(i)under section 19 of that Act (placing children with parental consent) with the consent of each parent or guardian and the consent of the mother was given when the child was at least six weeks old; or

(ii)under an order made under section 21 of that Act (placement orders) and the child was at least six weeks old when that order was made.

(3B)A parent or guardian may not oppose the making of an adoption order under subsection (1)(aa) or (ab) without the leave of the court.

(3C)The court shall not give leave under subsection (3B) unless satisfied that there has been a change of circumstances since the consent of the parent or guardian was given or, as the case may be, the order under section 21 of that Act was made.

(3D)The withdrawal of—

(a)any consent to the placement of a child for adoption—

(i)under section 19; or

(ii)under an order made under section 21,

of the Adoption and Children Act 2002; or

(b)any consent given under section 20 of that Act,

is ineffective if it is given after an application for an adoption order is made.

24In section 29 (return of children taken away in breach of section 27 or 28)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1), for “section 27 or 28 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 30, 34, 35 or 36 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”, and

(b)in subsection (2), for “section 27 or 28 of the Adoption Act 1976”, in both places where those words occur, there is substituted “ section 30, 34, 35 or 36 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

25In section 45 (Adopted Children Register)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (6)(d), for sub-paragraph (ii) there is substituted—

(ii)registered under Part II of the Care Standards Act 2000;;

(b)in subsection (6A)(b), for sub-paragraph (i) there is substituted—

(i)Schedule 2 to the Adoption and Children Act 2002;.

26In section 47 (annulment etc. of overseas adoptions), in subsection (4), for “section 53 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 89(2) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

27In section 50 (restriction on removal of children for adoption outside Great Britain), in subsection (1), for “section 55 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 84 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

28Section 52 (restriction on advertisements) is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

29In section 53 (effect of determination and orders made in England and Wales and overseas in adoption proceedings), in subsection (2), the words “England and Wales or” are omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

30After section 53 there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

53A Effect of certain orders made in England and Wales

(1)An adoption order (within the meaning of section 46(1) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002) has effect in Scotland as it has in England and Wales but as if any reference to the parental responsibility for the child were to the parental responsibilities and parental rights in relation to the child.

(2)An order made under section 21 of that Act (placement orders), and the variation or revocation of such an order under section 23 or 24 of that Act, have effect in Scotland as they have in England and Wales but as if any reference to the parental responsibility for the child were to the parental responsibilities and parental rights in relation to the child.

53B Effect of placing for adoption etc. under Adoption and Children Act 2002

(1)If—

(a)a child is placed for adoption under section 19 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (placing children with parental consent); or

(b)an adoption agency is authorised to place a child for adoption under that section,

sections 25 (parental responsibility) and 28(2) to (4) (further consequences of placement) of that Act have effect in Scotland as they have in England and Wales but with the modifications specified in subsection (2).

(2)Those modifications are—

(a)in section 25, any reference to the parental responsibility for the child is to be read as a reference to the parental responsibilities and parental rights in relation to the child; and

(b)in section 28(2), the reference to the court is to be read as a reference to the authorised court.

53C Further consequences of placement and placement orders

(1)Subsection (2) applies where—

(a)a child is placed for adoption under section 19 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (placing children with parental consent); or

(b)an adoption agency is authorised to place the child for adoption under that section.

(2)No order under subsection (1) of section 11 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (court orders relating to parental responsibilities etc.) of a kind referred to in subsection (2)(c) (residence orders) of that section may be made in respect of the child.

(3)On the making of an order under section 21 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (a “placement order”) in respect of a child, any order under subsection (1) of section 11 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 of a kind referred to in subsection (2)(c) to (f) (residence orders, contact orders, specific issue orders and interdicts in relation to parental responsibilities) of that section in respect of the child ceases to have effect.

(4)Where a placement order is in force—

(a)no such order as is referred to in subsection (3) of this section; and

(b)no order under section 55 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (child assessment orders),

may be made in respect of the child.

31In section 54 (evidence of adoption in England, Wales and Northern Ireland), in paragraph (a), for “section 50(2) of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 77(4) and (5) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

32In section 56 (authorised courts), in subsection (3), for “Great Britain” there is substituted “ Scotland ”.E+W+S+N.I.

33In section 59 (rules of procedure)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (2)—

(i)for the words from “in relation to” to “adoption”, where it secondly occurs, there is substituted “ (except where an order has been made freeing the child for adoption) ”; and

(ii)for the words from “every” to “Act” there is substituted “ any person mentioned in subsection (2A) ”; and

(b)after subsection (2) there is inserted—

(2A)The persons referred to in subsection (2) are—

(a)every person who can be found and whose agreement or consent to the making of the order is required to be given or dispensed with under this Act or, if no such person can be found, any relative prescribed by rules who can be found;

(b)every person who has consented to the making of the order under section 20 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (and has not withdrawn the consent) unless he has given a notice under subsection (4)(a) of that section which has effect;

(c)every person who, if leave were given under section 16(3B), would be entitled to oppose the making of the order.

34In section 60 (orders, rules and regulations), after subsection (3) there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(3A)An order under section 65(2) shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of the Scottish Parliament.

35In section 65 (interpretation), in subsection (1)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in the definition of “adoption agency”, for “section 1 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 2(1) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)in the definition of “adoption order”—

(i)in paragraph (b), for “section 12 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 46 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(ii)in paragraph (c), for “section 55 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 84 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”, and

(c)in the definition of “order freeing a child for adoption”, paragraph (a) and the word “and” immediately following that paragraph are omitted.

The Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 (c. 43)E+W+S+N.I.

36The Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 is amended as follows.

37In section 65 (meaning of family proceedings), in subsection (1), for paragraph (h) there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(h)the Adoption and Children Act 2002;.

38In section 69 (sitting of magistrates’ courts for family proceedings), in subsections (2) and (3), for “the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

39In section 71 (newspaper reports of family proceedings)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1), “(other than proceedings under the Adoption Act 1976)” is omitted,

(b)in subsection (2)—

(i)for “the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(ii)the words following “(a) and (b)” are omitted.

40In Part 1 of Schedule 6 (fees to be taken by justices’ chief executives), in the entry relating to family proceedings—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)for “the Adoption Act 1976, except under section 21 of that Act”, there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002, except under section 23 of that Act ”,

(b)in paragraph (c), for “section 21 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 23 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The Mental Health Act 1983 (c. 20)E+W+S+N.I.

41In section 28 of the Mental Health Act 1983 (nearest relative of minor under guardianship, etc.), in subsection (3), after “ “guardian”” there is inserted “ includes a special guardian (within the meaning of the Children Act 1989), but ”.

The Child Abduction Act 1984 (c. 37)E+W+S+N.I.

42(1)Section 1 of the Child Abduction Act 1984 (offence of abduction of child by parent, etc.) is amended as follows.

(2)In subsection (2), after paragraph (c) there is inserted—

(ca)he is a special guardian of the child; or.

(3)In subsection (3)(a), after sub-paragraph (iii) there is inserted—

(iiia)any special guardian of the child;.

(4)In subsection (4), for paragraphs (a) and (b) there is substituted—

(a)he is a person in whose favour there is a residence order in force with respect to the child, and he takes or sends the child out of the United Kingdom for a period of less than one month; or

(b)he is a special guardian of the child and he takes or sends the child out of the United Kingdom for a period of less than three months.

(5)In subsection (5A), the “or” at the end of sub-paragraph (i) of paragraph (a) is omitted, and after that sub-paragraph there is inserted—

(ia)who is a special guardian of the child; or.

(6)In subsection (7)(a), after “ “guardian of a child,”” there is inserted “ “special guardian,” ”.

43(1)The Schedule to that Act (modifications of section 1 for children in certain cases) is amended as follows.E+W+S+N.I.

(2)In paragraph 3 (adoption and custodianship), for sub-paragraphs (1) and (2) there is substituted—

(1)This paragraph applies where—

(a)a child is placed for adoption by an adoption agency under section 19 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002, or an adoption agency is authorised to place the child for adoption under that section; or

(b)a placement order is in force in respect of the child; or

(c)an application for such an order has been made in respect of the child and has not been disposed of; or

(d)an application for an adoption order has been made in respect of the child and has not been disposed of; or

(e)an order under section 84 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (giving parental responsibility prior to adoption abroad) has been made in respect of the child, or an application for such an order in respect of him has been made and has not been disposed of.

(2)Where this paragraph applies, section 1 of this Act shall have effect as if—

(a)the reference in subsection (1) to the appropriate consent were—

(i)in a case within sub-paragraph (1)(a) above, a reference to the consent of each person who has parental responsibility for the child or to the leave of the High Court;

(ii)in a case within sub-paragraph (1)(b) above, a reference to the leave of the court which made the placement order;

(iii)in a case within sub-paragraph (1)(c) or (d) above, a reference to the leave of the court to which the application was made;

(iv)in a case within sub-paragraph (1)(e) above, a reference to the leave of the court which made the order or, as the case may be, to which the application was made;

(b)subsection (3) were omitted;

(c)in subsection (4), in paragraph (a), for the words from “in whose favour” to the first mention of “child” there were substituted “who provides the child’s home in a case falling within sub-paragraph (1)(a) or (b) of paragraph 3 of the Schedule to this Act”; and

(d)subsections (4A), (5), (5A) and (6) were omitted.

(3)In paragraph 5 (interpretation), in sub-paragraph (a), for the words from “and “adoption order”” to the end there is substituted “ , “adoption order”, “placed for adoption by an adoption agency” and “placement order” have the same meaning as in the Adoption and Children Act 2002; and ”.

The Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (c. 42)E+W+S+N.I.

44In section 40 of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (family proceedings rules), in subsection (2), in paragraph (a), after “the Adoption Act 1968” the “or” is omitted and after “the Adoption Act 1976” there is inserted “ or section 141(1) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The Child Abduction and Custody Act 1985 (c. 60)E+W+S+N.I.

45In Schedule 3 to the Child Abduction and Custody Act 1985 (custody orders), in paragraph 1, the “and” at the end of paragraph (b) is omitted and after that paragraph there is inserted—

(bb)a special guardianship order (within the meaning of the Act of 1989); and,

and paragraph (c)(v) is omitted.

The Family Law Act 1986 (c. 55)E+W+S+N.I.

46The Family Law Act 1986 is amended as follows.

47In section 1 (orders to which Part 1 applies), in subsection (1), after paragraph (a) there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(aa)a special guardianship order made by a court in England and Wales under the Children Act 1989;

(ab)an order made under section 26 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (contact), other than an order varying or revoking such an order.

48In section 2 (jurisdiction: general), after subsection (2) there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(2A)A court in England and Wales shall not have jurisdiction to make a special guardianship order under the Children Act 1989 unless the condition in section 3 of this Act is satisfied.

(2B)A court in England and Wales shall not have jurisdiction to make an order under section 26 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 unless the condition in section 3 of this Act is satisfied.

49In section 57 (declarations as to adoptions effected overseas)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)for subsection (1)(a) there is substituted—

(a)a Convention adoption, or an overseas adoption, within the meaning of the Adoption and Children Act 2002, or,

(b)in subsection (2)(a), after “1976” there is inserted “ or section 67 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The Family Law Reform Act 1987 (c. 42)E+W+S+N.I.

50The Family Law Reform Act 1987 is amended as follows.

51In section 1 (general principle), for paragraph (c) of subsection (3) there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(c)is an adopted person within the meaning of Chapter 4 of Part 1 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002.

52In section 19 (dispositions of property), in subsection (5), after “1976” there is inserted “ or section 69 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

The Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987 (S.I. 1987/2203 (N.I. 22))E+W+S+N.I.

53In Article 2(2) (interpretation), in the definition of “prescribed”, for “Articles 54” there is substituted “ Articles 53(3B) and (3D), 54 ”.

The Children Act 1989 (c. 41)E+W+S+N.I.

54The Children Act 1989 is amended as follows.

55In section 8 (residence, contact and other orders with respect to children), in subsection (4), for paragraph (d) there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(d)the Adoption and Children Act 2002;.

56In section 10 (power of court to make section 8 orders)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (4)(a), for “or guardian” there is substituted “ , guardian or special guardian ”,

(b)after subsection (4)(a) there is inserted—

(aa)any person who by virtue of section 4A has parental responsibility for the child;,

(c)after subsection (5) there is inserted—

(5A)A local authority foster parent is entitled to apply for a residence order with respect to a child if the child has lived with him for a period of at least one year immediately preceding the application.,

(d)after subsection (7) there is inserted—

(7A)If a special guardianship order is in force with respect to a child, an application for a residence order may only be made with respect to him, if apart from this subsection the leave of the court is not required, with such leave.

57In section 12 (residence orders and parental responsibility), in subsection (3)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)paragraph (a) is omitted,

(b)in paragraph (b), for “section 55 of the Act of 1976” there is substituted “ section 84 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

58In section 16 (family assistance orders), in subsection (2)(a), for “or guardian” there is substituted “ , guardian or special guardian ”.E+W+S+N.I.

59In section 20 (provision of accommodation for children: general), in subsection (9), the “or” at the end of paragraph (a) is omitted and after that paragraph there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(aa)who is a special guardian of the child; or.

60In section 24 (persons qualifying for advice and assistance)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)for subsection (1) there is substituted—

(1)In this Part “a person qualifying for advice and assistance” means a person to whom subsection (1A) or (1B) applies.

(1A)This subsection applies to a person—

(a)who has reached the age of sixteen but not the age of twenty-one;

(b)with respect to whom a special guardianship order is in force (or, if he has reached the age of eighteen, was in force when he reached that age); and

(c)who was, immediately before the making of that order, looked after by a local authority.

(1B)This subsection applies to a person to whom subsection (1A) does not apply, and who—

(a)is under twenty-one; and

(b)at any time after reaching the age of sixteen but while still a child was, but is no longer, looked after, accommodated or fostered.,

(b)in subsection (2), for “subsection (1)(b)” there is substituted “ subsection (1B)(b) ”,

(c)in subsection (5), before paragraph (a) there is inserted—

(za)in the case of a person to whom subsection (1A) applies, a local authority determined in accordance with regulations made by the Secretary of State;.

61In section 24A (advice and assistance for qualifying persons)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (2)(b), after “a person” there is inserted “ to whom section 24(1A) applies, or to whom section 24(1B) applies and ”,

(b)in subsection (3)(a), after “if” there is inserted “ he is a person to whom section 24(1A) applies, or he is a person to whom section 24(1B) applies and ”.

62In section 24B (assistance with employment, education and training), in each of subsections (1) and (3)(b), after “of” there is inserted “ section 24(1A) or ”.E+W+S+N.I.

63In section 33 (effect of care order)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (3)(b), for “a parent or guardian of the child” there is substituted

(i)a parent, guardian or special guardian of the child; or

(ii)a person who by virtue of section 4A has parental responsibility for the child,,

(b)in subsection (5), for “a parent or guardian of the child who has care of him” there is substituted “ a person mentioned in that provision who has care of the child ”,

(c)in subsection (6)(b)—

(i)sub-paragraph (i) is omitted,

(ii)in sub-paragraph (ii), for “section 55 of the Act of 1976” there is substituted “ section 84 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(d)in subsection (9), for “a parent or guardian of the child” there is substituted “ a person mentioned in that provision ”.

64In section 34 (parental contact etc. with children in care)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1)(b), after “guardian” there is inserted “ or special guardian ”, and

(b)after subsection (1)(b) there is inserted—

(ba)any person who by virtue of section 4A has parental responsibility for him;.

65In section 80 (inspection of children’s homes by persons authorised by Secretary of State), in subsection (1), paragraphs (e) and (f) are omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

66In section 81 (inquiries), in subsection (1), paragraph (b) is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

67In section 88 (amendments of adoption legislation), subsection (1) is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

68In section 91 (effect and duration of orders, etc.)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)after subsection (5) there is inserted—

(5A)The making of a special guardianship order with respect to a child who is the subject of—

(a)a care order; or

(b)an order under section 34,

discharges that order.,

(b)in subsection (7), after “4(1)” there is inserted “ 4A(1) ”,

(c)in subsection (8)(a), after “4” there is inserted “ or 4A ”.

69In section 102 (power of constable to assist in exercise of certain powers to search for children or inspect premises), in subsection (6), paragraph (c) is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

70In section 105 (interpretation), in subsection (1)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in the definition of “adoption agency”, for “section 1 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)at the appropriate place there is inserted—

section 31A plan” has the meaning given by section 31A(6);,

(c)in the definition of “parental responsibility agreement”, for “section 4(1)” there is substituted “ sections 4(1) and 4A(2) ”,

(d)the definition of “protected child” is omitted,

(e)after the definition of “special educational needs” there is inserted—

special guardian” and “special guardianship order” have the meaning given by section 14A;.

71In Schedule 1 (financial provision for children)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in paragraph 1 (orders for financial relief against parents)—

(i)in sub-paragraph (1), for “or guardian” there is substituted “ , guardian or special guardian ”, and

(ii)in sub-paragraph (6), after “order” there is inserted “ or a special guardianship order ”,

(b)in paragraph 6 (variation etc of orders for periodical payments), in sub-paragraph (8), after “guardian” there is inserted “ or special guardian ”,

(c)in paragraph 8 (financial relief under other enactments), in sub-paragraph (1) and in sub-paragraph (2)(b), after “residence order” there is inserted “ or a special guardianship order ”,

(d)in paragraph 14 (financial provision for child resident in country outside England and Wales), in sub-paragraph (1)(b), after “guardian” there is inserted “ or special guardian ”.

72In Schedule 2, in paragraph 19 (arrangements by local authorities to assist children to live abroad)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in sub-paragraph (4) (arrangements to assist children to live abroad), after “guardian,” there is inserted “ special guardian, ”,

(b)in sub-paragraph (6), for the words from the beginning to “British subject)” there is substituted “ Section 85 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (which imposes restrictions on taking children out of the United Kingdom) ”,

(c)after sub-paragraph (8) there is inserted—

(9)This paragraph does not apply to a local authority placing a child for adoption with prospective adopters.

73In Schedule 8 (privately fostered children), in paragraph 5, for sub-paragraphs (a) and (b) there is substituted he is placed in the care of a person who proposes to adopt him under arrangements made by an adoption agency within the meaning of— E+W+S+N.I.

(a)section 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002;

(b)section 1 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978; or

(c)Article 3 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987.

74Part 1 of Schedule 10 is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

75In Schedule 11 (jurisdiction), in paragraphs 1 and 2, for the words “the Adoption Act 1976”, wherever they occur, there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 (c. 37)E+W+S+N.I.

76The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 is amended as follows.

77In section 27 (meaning of mother), in subsection (2), for “child of any person other than the adopter or adopters” there is substituted “ woman’s child ”.E+W+S+N.I.

78In section 28 (meaning of father), in subsection (5)(c), for “child of any person other than the adopter or adopters” there is substituted “ man’s child ”.E+W+S+N.I.

79In section 30 (parental orders in favour of gamete donors), in subsection (10) for “Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

The Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 (c. 41)E+W+S+N.I.

80In section 58A of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 (conditional fee agreements: supplementary), in subsection (2), for paragraph (b) there is substituted—

(b)the Adoption and Children Act 2002;.

The Child Support Act 1991 (c. 48)E+W+S+N.I.

81In section 26 of the Child Support Act 1991 (disputes about parentage), in subsection (3), after “1976” there is inserted “ or Chapter 4 of Part 1 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 36)E+W+S+N.I.

82Section 86 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (parental responsibilities order: general) is amended as follows.

83In subsection (3), in paragraph (a), for “section 18 (freeing for adoption) or 55 (adoption abroad) of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 19 (placing children with parental consent) or 84 (giving parental responsibility prior to adoption abroad) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

84In subsection (6), in paragraph (b), for the words from the beginning to “Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(b)he becomes the subject of an adoption order within the meaning of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978;

(bb)an adoption agency, within the meaning of section 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002, is authorised to place him for adoption under section 19 of that Act (placing children with parental consent) or he becomes the subject of an order under section 21 of that Act (placement orders) or under section 84 of that Act (giving parental responsibility prior to adoption abroad).

The Family Law Act 1996 (c. 27)E+W+S+N.I.

85The Family Law Act 1996 is amended as follows.

86In section 62 (meaning of “relevant child” etc.)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (2), in paragraph (b), after “the Adoption Act 1976” there is inserted “ , the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)in subsection (5), for the words from “has been freed” to “1976” there is substituted “ falls within subsection (7) ”.

87At the end of that section there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(7)A child falls within this subsection if—

(a)an adoption agency, within the meaning of section 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002, has power to place him for adoption under section 19 of that Act (placing children with parental consent) or he has become the subject of an order under section 21 of that Act (placement orders), or

(b)he is freed for adoption by virtue of an order made—

(i)in England and Wales, under section 18 of the Adoption Act 1976,

(ii)in Scotland, under section 18 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978, or

(iii)in Northern Ireland, under Article 17(1) or 18(1) of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987.

88In section 63 (interpretation of Part 4)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1), for the definition of “adoption order”, there is substituted—

adoption order” means an adoption order within the meaning of section 72(1) of the Adoption Act 1976 or section 46(1) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002;,

(b)in subsection (2), after paragraph (h) there is inserted—

(i)the Adoption and Children Act 2002.

The Housing Act 1996 (c. 52)E+W+S+N.I.

89Section 178 of the Housing Act 1996 (meaning of associated person) is amended as follows.

90In subsection (2), for the words from “has been freed” to “1976” there is substituted “ falls within subsection (2A) ”.E+W+S+N.I.

91After that subsection there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(2A)A child falls within this subsection if—

(a)an adoption agency, within the meaning of section 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002, is authorised to place him for adoption under section 19 of that Act (placing children with parental consent) or he has become the subject of an order under section 21 of that Act (placement orders), or

(b)he is freed for adoption by virtue of an order made—

(i)in England and Wales, under section 18 of the Adoption Act 1976,

(ii)in Scotland, under section 18 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978, or

(iii)in Northern Ireland, under Article 17(1) or 18(1) of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987.

92In subsection (3), for the definition of “adoption order”, there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

adoption order” means an adoption order within the meaning of section 72(1) of the Adoption Act 1976 or section 46(1) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002;.

The Police Act 1997 (c. 50)E+W+S+N.I.

93In section 115 of the Police Act 1997 (enhanced criminal records), in subsection (5)(h), for “section 11 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.

The Protection of Children Act 1999 (c. 14)E+W+S+N.I.

94In section 2B of the Protection of Children Act 1999 (individuals named in the findings of certain inquiries), in subsection (7), after paragraph (a) there is inserted—

(vi)section 17 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002;.

The Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999 (c. 18)E+W+S+N.I.

95The following provisions of the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999 cease to have effect in relation to England and Wales: sections 3, 6, 8, 9 and 11 to 13.

96Section 2 of that Act (accredited bodies) is amended as follows.E+W+S+N.I.

97In subsection (2A)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)for the words from the beginning to “2000” there is substituted “ A registered adoption society ”,

(b)for “agency” there is substituted “ society ”.

98For subsection (5) there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(5)In this section, “registered adoption society” has the same meaning as in section 2 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (basic definitions); and expressions used in this section in its application to England and Wales which are also used in that Act have the same meanings as in that Act.

99In subsection (6)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)the words “in its application to Scotland” are omitted,

(b)after “expressions” there is inserted “ used in this section in its application to Scotland ”.

100Section 14 (restriction on bringing children into the United Kingdom for adoption) is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

101In section 16(1) (devolution: Wales), the words “, or section 17 or 56A of the 1976 Act,” are omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

The Access to Justice Act 1999 (c. 22)E+W+S+N.I.

102In Schedule 2 to the Access to Justice Act 1999 (Community Legal Service: excluded services), in paragraph 2(3)(c)—

(a)for “section 27 or 28 of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 36 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)for “an order under Part II or section 29 or 55” there is substituted “ a placement order or adoption order (within the meaning of the Adoption and Children Act 2002) or an order under section 41 or 84 ”.

The Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14)E+W+S+N.I.

103The Care Standards Act 2000 is amended as follows.

104In section 4 (basic definitions), in subsection (7), for “the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

105At the end of section 5 (registration authorities) there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(2)This section is subject to section 36A.

106In section 11 (requirement to register), in subsection (3), for “reference in subsection (1) to an agency does” there is substituted “ references in subsections (1) and (2) to an agency do ”.E+W+S+N.I.

107In section 14 (2) (offences conviction of which may result in cancellation of registration), for paragraph (d) there is substituted—E+W+S+N.I.

(d)an offence under regulations under section 1(3) of the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999,

(e)an offence under the Adoption and Children Act 2002 or regulations made under it.

108In section 16(2) (power to make regulations providing that no application for registration may be made in respect of certain agencies which are unincorporated bodies), “or a voluntary adoption agency” is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

109In section 22(10) (disapplication of power to make regulations in the case of voluntary adoption agencies), at the end there is inserted. “ or adoption support agencies ”E+W+S+N.I.

110In section 23 (standards), at the end of subsection (4)(d) there is inserted “”. “ or proceedings against a voluntary adoption agency for an offence under section 9(4) of the Adoption Act 1976 or section 9 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”E+W+S+N.I.

111In section 31 (inspections by authorised persons), in subsection (3)(b), for “section 9(2) of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 9 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

112In section 43 (introductory), in subsection (3)(a)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)for “the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)after “children” there is inserted “ or the provision of adoption support services (as defined in section 2(6) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002) ”.

113In section 46 (inspections: supplementary), in subsection (7)(c), for “section 9(3) of the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ section 9 of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”.E+W+S+N.I.

114In section 48 (regulation of fostering functions), at the end of subsection (1) there is inserted—E+W+S+N.I.

(f)as to the fees or expenses which may be paid to persons assisting local authorities in making decisions in the exercise of such functions.

115In section 55(2)(b) (definition of “social care worker”), for “or a voluntary adoption agency” there is substituted “ , a voluntary adoption agency or an adoption support agency ”.E+W+S+N.I.

116In section 121 (general interpretation)—E+W+S+N.I.

(a)in subsection (1), in the definition of “voluntary organisation”, for “the Adoption Act 1976” there is substituted “ the Adoption and Children Act 2002 ”,

(b)in subsection (13), in the appropriate place in the table there is inserted— “ Adoption support agency Section 4 ”.

117In Schedule 4 (minor and consequential amendments), paragraph 27(b) is omitted.E+W+S+N.I.

The Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000 (c. 43)E+W+S+N.I.

118In section 12(5) of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000 (meaning of “family proceedings” in relation to CAFCASS), paragraph (b) (supervision orders under the 1989 Act) and the preceding “and” are omitted.

Prospective

Section 139

SCHEDULE 4E+W+STransitional and transitory provisions and savings

General rules for continuityE+W

1(1)Any reference (express or implied) in Part 1 or any other enactment, instrument or document to—

(a)any provision of Part 1, or

(b)things done or falling to be done under or for the purposes of any provision of Part 1,

must, so far as the nature of the reference permits, be construed as including, in relation to the times, circumstances or purposes in relation to which the corresponding provision repealed by this Act had effect, a reference to that corresponding provision or (as the case may be) to things done or falling to be done under or for the purposes of that corresponding provision.

(2)Any reference (express or implied) in any enactment, instrument or document to—

(a)a provision repealed by this Act, or

(b)things done or falling to be done under or for the purposes of such a provision,

must, so far as the nature of the reference permits, be construed as including, in relation to the times, circumstances or purposes in relation to which the corresponding provision of Part 1 has effect, a reference to that corresponding provision or (as the case may be) to things done or falling to be done under or for the purposes of that corresponding provision.

General rule for old savingsE+W

2(1)The repeal by this Act of an enactment previously repealed subject to savings does not affect the continued operation of those savings.

(2)The repeal by this Act of a saving made on the previous repeal of an enactment does not affect the operation of the saving in so far as it is not specifically reproduced in this Act but remains capable of having effect.

Adoption support servicesE+W

3

3[F1(1)The facilities to be provided by local authorities as part of the service maintained under section 1(1) of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) include such arrangements as the authorities may be required by regulations to make for the provision of adoption support services to prescribed persons.

(2)Regulations under sub-paragraph (1) may require a local authority—

(a)at the request of a prescribed person, to carry out an assessment of his needs for adoption support services,

(b)if, as a result of the assessment, the authority decide that he has such needs, to decide whether to provide any such services to him,

(c)if the authority decide to provide any such services to a person, and the circumstances fall within a description prescribed by the regulations, to prepare a plan in accordance with which the services are to be provided to him and keep the plan under review.

(3)Subsections (6) and (7) (except paragraph (a)) of section 4 of this Act apply to regulations under sub-paragraph (1) as they apply to regulations made by virtue of that section.

(4)Section 57(1) of the Adoption Act 1976 (prohibited payments) does not apply to any payment made in accordance with regulations under sub-paragraph (1).]

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Amendments (Textual)

Adoption support servicesE+W

3(1)The facilities to be provided by local authorities as part of the service maintained under section 1(1) of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) include such arrangements as the authorities may be required by regulations to make for the provision of adoption support services to prescribed persons.

(2)Regulations under sub-paragraph (1) may require a local authority—

(a)at the request of a prescribed person, to carry out an assessment of his needs for adoption support services,

(b)if, as a result of the assessment, the authority decide that he has such needs, to decide whether to provide any such services to him,

(c)if the authority decide to provide any such services to a person, and the circumstances fall within a description prescribed by the regulations, to prepare a plan in accordance with which the services are to be provided to him and keep the plan under review.

(3)Subsections (6) and (7) (except paragraph (a)) of section 4 of this Act apply to regulations under sub-paragraph (1) as they apply to regulations made by virtue of that section.

(4)Section 57(1) of the Adoption Act 1976 (prohibited payments) does not apply to any payment made in accordance with regulations under sub-paragraph (1).

Regulation of adoption agenciesE+W

4

4[F2(1)In section 9 of the Adoption Act 1976—

(a)for “Secretary of State” in subsections (2) and (3) there is substituted “ appropriate Minister ”, and

(b)at the end of that section there is inserted—

(5)In this section and section 9A, “the appropriate Minister” means—

(a)in relation to England, the Secretary of State,

(b)in relation to Wales, the National Assembly for Wales,

and in relation to England and Wales, means the Secretary of State and the Assembly acting jointly.

(2)Until the commencement of the repeal by this Act of section 9(2) of the Adoption Act 1976, section 36A of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14) (inserted by section 16 of this Act) is to have effect as if, after “2002”, there were inserted “ or under section 9(2) of the Adoption Act 1976 ”.]

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Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Amendments (Textual)

Regulation of adoption agenciesE+W

4(1)In section 9 of the Adoption Act 1976—

(a)for “Secretary of State” in subsections (2) and (3) there is substituted “ appropriate Minister ”, and

(b)at the end of that section there is inserted—

(5)In this section and section 9A, “the appropriate Minister” means—

(a)in relation to England, the Secretary of State,

(b)in relation to Wales, the National Assembly for Wales,

and in relation to England and Wales, means the Secretary of State and the Assembly acting jointly.

(2)Until the commencement of the repeal by this Act of section 9(2) of the Adoption Act 1976, section 36A of the Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14) (inserted by section 16 of this Act) is to have effect as if, after “2002”, there were inserted “ or under section 9(2) of the Adoption Act 1976 ”.

Independent review mechanismE+W

5

[F3After section 9 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) there is inserted—

9A Independent review of determinations

(1)Regulations under section 9 may establish a procedure under which any person in respect of whom a qualifying determination has been made by an adoption agency may apply to a panel constituted by the appropriate Minister for a review of that determination.

(2)The regulations must make provision as to the description of determinations which are qualifying determinations for the purposes of subsection (1).

(3)The regulations may include provision as to—

(a)the duties and powers of a panel (including the power to recover the costs of a review from the adoption agency by which the determination reviewed was made),

(b)the administration and procedures of a panel,

(c)the appointment of members of a panel (including the number, or any limit on the number, of members who may be appointed and any conditions for appointment),

(d)the payment of expenses of members of a panel,

(e)the duties of adoption agencies in connection with reviews conducted under the regulations,

(f)the monitoring of any such reviews.

(4)The appropriate Minister may make an arrangement with an organisation under which functions in relation to the panel are performed by the organisation on his behalf.

(5)If the appropriate Minister makes such an arrangement with an organisation, the organisation is to perform its functions under the arrangement in accordance with any general or special directions given by the appropriate Minister.

(6)The arrangement may include provision for payments to be made to the organisation by the appropriate Minister.

(7)Where the appropriate Minister is the National Assembly for Wales, subsections (4) and (6) also apply as if references to an organisation included references to the Secretary of State.

(8)In this section, “organisation” includes a public body and a private or voluntary organisation.]

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Amendments (Textual)

Independent review mechanismE+W

5After section 9 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) there is inserted—

9A Independent review of determinations

(1)Regulations under section 9 may establish a procedure under which any person in respect of whom a qualifying determination has been made by an adoption agency may apply to a panel constituted by the appropriate Minister for a review of that determination.

(2)The regulations must make provision as to the description of determinations which are qualifying determinations for the purposes of subsection (1).

(3)The regulations may include provision as to—

(a)the duties and powers of a panel (including the power to recover the costs of a review from the adoption agency by which the determination reviewed was made),

(b)the administration and procedures of a panel,

(c)the appointment of members of a panel (including the number, or any limit on the number, of members who may be appointed and any conditions for appointment),

(d)the payment of expenses of members of a panel,

(e)the duties of adoption agencies in connection with reviews conducted under the regulations,

(f)the monitoring of any such reviews.

(4)The appropriate Minister may make an arrangement with an organisation under which functions in relation to the panel are performed by the organisation on his behalf.

(5)If the appropriate Minister makes such an arrangement with an organisation, the organisation is to perform its functions under the arrangement in accordance with any general or special directions given by the appropriate Minister.

(6)The arrangement may include provision for payments to be made to the organisation by the appropriate Minister.

(7)Where the appropriate Minister is the National Assembly for Wales, subsections (4) and (6) also apply as if references to an organisation included references to the Secretary of State.

(8)In this section, “organisation” includes a public body and a private or voluntary organisation.

Pending applications for freeing ordersE+W+S+N.I.

6Nothing in this Act affects any application for an order under section 18 of the Adoption Act 1976 (freeing for adoption) where—

(a)the application has been made and has not been disposed of immediately before the repeal of that section, and

(b)the child in relation to whom the application is made has his home immediately before that repeal with a person with whom he has been placed for adoption by an adoption agency.

Freeing ordersE+W+S+N.I.

7(1)Nothing in this Act affects any order made under section 18 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) and—

(a)sections 19 to 21 of that Act are to continue to have effect in relation to such an order, and

(b)Part 1 of Schedule 6 to the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 (c. 43) is to continue to have effect for the purposes of an application under section 21 of the Adoption Act 1976 in relation to such an order.

(2)Section 20 of that Act, as it has effect by virtue of this paragraph, is to apply as if, in subsection (3)(c) after “1989” there were inserted—

(iia)any care order, within the meaning of that Act.

(3)Where a child is free for adoption by virtue of an order made under section 18 of that Act, the third condition in section 47(6) is to be treated as satisfied.

Pending applications for adoption ordersE+W+S+N.I.

8Nothing in this Act affects any application for an adoption order under section 12 of the Adoption Act 1976 where—

(a)the application has been made and has not been disposed of immediately before the repeal of that section, and

(b)the child in relation to whom the application is made has his home immediately before that repeal with a person with whom he has been placed for adoption by an adoption agency.

Notification of adoption applicationsE+W+S+N.I.

9Where a notice given in respect of a child by the prospective adopters under section 22(1) of the Adoption Act 1976 is treated by virtue of paragraph 1(1) as having been given for the purposes of section 44(2) in respect of an application to adopt the child, section 42(3) has effect in relation to their application for an adoption order as if for “six months” there were substituted “ twelve months ”.

Adoptions with a foreign elementE+W

10

[F4In section 13 of the Adoption Act 1976 (child to live with adopters before order is made)—

(a)in subsection (1)(a), at the beginning there is inserted “ (subject to subsection (1A)) ”,

(b)after subsection (1) there is inserted—

(1A)Where an adoption is proposed to be effected by a Convention adoption order, the order shall not be made unless at all times during the preceding six months the child had his home with the applicants or one of them.,

(c)in subsection (2), after “subsection (1)” there is inserted “ or (1A) ”,

(d)subsection (4) is omitted.]

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Amendments (Textual)

Adoptions with a foreign elementE+W

10In section 13 of the Adoption Act 1976 (child to live with adopters before order is made)—

(a)in subsection (1)(a), at the beginning there is inserted “ (subject to subsection (1A)) ”,

(b)after subsection (1) there is inserted—

(1A)Where an adoption is proposed to be effected by a Convention adoption order, the order shall not be made unless at all times during the preceding six months the child had his home with the applicants or one of them.,

(c)in subsection (2), after “subsection (1)” there is inserted “ or (1A) ”,

(d)subsection (4) is omitted.

11E+W

[F5In section 56 of the Adoption Act 1976 (restriction on removal of children for adoption outside Great Britain)—

(a)in subsection (1), “not being a parent or guardian or relative of the child” is omitted,

(b)at the end of that section there is inserted—

(4)Regulations may provide for subsection (1) to apply with modifications, or not to apply, if—

(a)the prospective adopters are parents, relatives or guardians of the child in question (or one of them is), or

(b)the prospective adopter is a step-parent of the child,

and any prescribed conditions are met.

(5)On the occasion of the first exercise of the power to make regulations under subsection (4)—

(a)the regulations shall not be made unless a draft of the regulations has been approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament, and

(b)accordingly section 67(2) does not apply to the statutory instrument containing the regulations.

(6)In this section, “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations and “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State, after consultation with the National Assembly for Wales.]

Annotations: Help about Annotation
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Amendments (Textual)

11In section 56 of the Adoption Act 1976 (restriction on removal of children for adoption outside Great Britain)—E+W

(a)in subsection (1), “not being a parent or guardian or relative of the child” is omitted,

(b)at the end of that section there is inserted—

(4)Regulations may provide for subsection (1) to apply with modifications, or not to apply, if—

(a)the prospective adopters are parents, relatives or guardians of the child in question (or one of them is), or

(b)the prospective adopter is a step-parent of the child,

and any prescribed conditions are met.

(5)On the occasion of the first exercise of the power to make regulations under subsection (4)—

(a)the regulations shall not be made unless a draft of the regulations has been approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament, and

(b)accordingly section 67(2) does not apply to the statutory instrument containing the regulations.

(6)In this section, “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations and “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State, after consultation with the National Assembly for Wales.

12E+W

[F6For section 56A of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) there is substituted—

56A Restriction on bringing children into the United Kingdom

(1)This section applies where a person who is habitually resident in the British Islands (the “British resident”)—

(a)brings, or causes another to bring, a child who is habitually resident outside the British Islands into the United Kingdom for the purpose of adoption by the British resident, or

(b)at any time brings, or causes another to bring, into the United Kingdom a child adopted by the British resident under an external adoption effected within the period of six months ending with that time.

The references to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident include a reference to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident and another person.

(2)But this section does not apply if the child is intended to be adopted under a Convention adoption order.

(3)An external adoption means an adoption, other than a Convention adoption, of a child effected under the law of any country or territory outside the British Islands, whether or not the adoption is—

(a)an adoption within the meaning of Part IV of this Act, or

(b)a full adoption (within the meaning of section 39(3A)).

(4)Regulations may require a person intending to bring, or to cause another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies—

(a)to apply to an adoption agency (including an adoption agency within the meaning of section 1 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 or Article 3 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987) in the prescribed manner for an assessment of his suitability to adopt the child, and

(b)to give the agency any information it may require for the purpose of the assessment.

(5)Regulations may require prescribed conditions to be met in respect of a child brought into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies.

(6)In relation to a child brought into the United Kingdom for adoption in circumstances where this section applies, regulations may provide for any provision of Part II to apply with modifications or not to apply.

(7)If a person brings, or causes another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom at any time in circumstances where this section applies, he is guilty of an offence if—

(a)he has not complied with any requirement imposed by virtue of subsection (4), or

(b)any condition required to be met by virtue of subsection (5) is not met,

before that time, or before any later time which may be prescribed.

(8)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a)on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or both,

(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months, or a fine, or both.

(9)Regulations may provide for the preceding provisions of this section not to apply if—

(a)the adopters or (as the case may be) prospective adopters are natural parents, natural relatives or guardians of the child in question (or one of them is), or

(b)the British resident in question is a step-parent of the child,

and any prescribed conditions are met.

(10)On the occasion of the first exercise of the power to make regulations under subsection (9)—

(a)the regulations shall not be made unless a draft of the regulations has been approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament, and

(b)accordingly section 67(2) does not apply to the statutory instrument containing the regulations.

(11)In this section, “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations and “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State, after consultation with the National Assembly for Wales.]

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Amendments (Textual)

12For section 56A of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) there is substituted—E+W

56A Restriction on bringing children into the United Kingdom

(1)This section applies where a person who is habitually resident in the British Islands (the “British resident”)—

(a)brings, or causes another to bring, a child who is habitually resident outside the British Islands into the United Kingdom for the purpose of adoption by the British resident, or

(b)at any time brings, or causes another to bring, into the United Kingdom a child adopted by the British resident under an external adoption effected within the period of six months ending with that time.

The references to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident include a reference to adoption, or to a child adopted, by the British resident and another person.

(2)But this section does not apply if the child is intended to be adopted under a Convention adoption order.

(3)An external adoption means an adoption, other than a Convention adoption, of a child effected under the law of any country or territory outside the British Islands, whether or not the adoption is—

(a)an adoption within the meaning of Part IV of this Act, or

(b)a full adoption (within the meaning of section 39(3A)).

(4)Regulations may require a person intending to bring, or to cause another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies—

(a)to apply to an adoption agency (including an adoption agency within the meaning of section 1 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 or Article 3 of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987) in the prescribed manner for an assessment of his suitability to adopt the child, and

(b)to give the agency any information it may require for the purpose of the assessment.

(5)Regulations may require prescribed conditions to be met in respect of a child brought into the United Kingdom in circumstances where this section applies.

(6)In relation to a child brought into the United Kingdom for adoption in circumstances where this section applies, regulations may provide for any provision of Part II to apply with modifications or not to apply.

(7)If a person brings, or causes another to bring, a child into the United Kingdom at any time in circumstances where this section applies, he is guilty of an offence if—

(a)he has not complied with any requirement imposed by virtue of subsection (4), or

(b)any condition required to be met by virtue of subsection (5) is not met,

before that time, or before any later time which may be prescribed.

(8)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a)on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or both,

(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months, or a fine, or both.

(9)Regulations may provide for the preceding provisions of this section not to apply if—

(a)the adopters or (as the case may be) prospective adopters are natural parents, natural relatives or guardians of the child in question (or one of them is), or

(b)the British resident in question is a step-parent of the child,

and any prescribed conditions are met.

(10)On the occasion of the first exercise of the power to make regulations under subsection (9)—

(a)the regulations shall not be made unless a draft of the regulations has been approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament, and

(b)accordingly section 67(2) does not apply to the statutory instrument containing the regulations.

(11)In this section, “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations and “regulations” means regulations made by the Secretary of State, after consultation with the National Assembly for Wales.

13E+W

[F7In section 72 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) (interpretation), subsection (3B) is omitted.]

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Amendments (Textual)

13In section 72 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) (interpretation), subsection (3B) is omitted.E+W

AdvertisingE+W

14

[F8In section 58 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) (restrictions on advertisements)—

(a)after subsection (1) there is inserted—

(1A)Publishing an advertisement includes doing so by electronic means (for example, by means of the internet).,

(b)in subsection (2), for the words following “conviction” there is substituted “ to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both ”.]

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Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Amendments (Textual)

AdvertisingE+W

14In section 58 of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36) (restrictions on advertisements)—

(a)after subsection (1) there is inserted—

(1A)Publishing an advertisement includes doing so by electronic means (for example, by means of the internet).,

(b)in subsection (2), for the words following “conviction” there is substituted “ to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both ”.

15E+W

[F9In section 52 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) (restriction on advertisements)—

(a)after subsection (1) there is inserted—

(1A)Publishing an advertisement includes doing so by electronic means (for example, by means of the internet).,

(b)in subsection (2), for the words following “conviction” there is substituted “ to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both ”.]

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Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Amendments (Textual)

15In section 52 of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28) (restriction on advertisements)—E+W

(a)after subsection (1) there is inserted—

(1A)Publishing an advertisement includes doing so by electronic means (for example, by means of the internet).,

(b)in subsection (2), for the words following “conviction” there is substituted “ to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months, or a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, or both ”.

16E+W

16[F10(1)The Secretary of State may make regulations providing for the references to an adoption agency in—E+W

(a)section 58(1)(c) of the Adoption Act 1976, and

(b)section 52(1)(c) of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978,

to include a prescribed person outside the United Kingdom exercising functions corresponding to those of an adoption agency, if the functions are being exercised in prescribed circumstances.

Prescribed” means prescribed by the regulations.

(2)Before exercising the power conferred by sub-paragraph (1) in relation to the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978, the Secretary of State must consult the Scottish Ministers.]

Annotations: Help about Annotation
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Annotations are used to give authority for changes and other effects on the legislation you are viewing and to convey editorial information. They appear at the foot of the relevant provision or under the associated heading. Annotations are categorised by annotation type, such as F-notes for textual amendments and I-notes for commencement information (a full list can be found in the Editorial Practice Guide). Each annotation is identified by a sequential reference number. For F-notes, M-notes and X-notes, the number also appears in bold superscript at the relevant location in the text. All annotations contain links to the affecting legislation.

Amendments (Textual)

16(1)The Secretary of State may make regulations providing for the references to an adoption agency in—E+W

(a)section 58(1)(c) of the Adoption Act 1976, and

(b)section 52(1)(c) of the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978,

to include a prescribed person outside the United Kingdom exercising functions corresponding to those of an adoption agency, if the functions are being exercised in prescribed circumstances.

Prescribed” means prescribed by the regulations.

(2)Before exercising the power conferred by sub-paragraph (1) in relation to the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978, the Secretary of State must consult the Scottish Ministers.

StatusE+W+S+N.I.

17(1)Section 67—

(a)does not apply to a pre-1976 instrument or enactment in so far as it contains a disposition of property, and

(b)does not apply to any public general Act in its application to any disposition of property in a pre-1976 instrument or enactment.

(2)Section 73 applies in relation to this paragraph as if this paragraph were contained in Chapter 4 of Part 1; and an instrument or enactment is a pre-1976 instrument or enactment for the purposes of this Schedule if it was passed or made at any time before 1st January 1976.

18Section 69 does not apply to a pre-1976 instrument.E+W+S+N.I.

19In section 70(1), the reference to Part 3 of the Family Law Reform Act 1987 (c. 42) includes Part 2 of the Family Law Reform Act 1969 (c. 46).E+W+S+N.I.

Registration of adoptionsE+W

20(1)The power of the court under paragraph 4(1) of Schedule 1 to amend an order on the application of the adopter or adopted person includes, in relation to an order made before 1st April 1959, power to make any amendment of the particulars contained in the order which appears to be required to bring the order into the form in which it would have been made if paragraph 1 of that Schedule had applied to the order.

(2)In relation to an adoption order made before the commencement of the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36), the reference in paragraph 4(3) of that Schedule to paragraph 1(2) or (3) is to be read—

(a)in the case of an order under the Adoption of Children Act 1926 (c. 29), as a reference to section 12(3) and (4) of the Adoption of Children Act 1949 (c. 98),

(b)in the case of an order under the Adoption Act 1950 (c. 26), as a reference to section 18(3) and (4) of that Act,

(c)in the case of an order under the Adoption Act 1958 (c. 5), as a reference to section 21(4) and (5) of that Act.

The Child Abduction Act 1984 (c. 37)E+W

21Paragraph 43 of Schedule 3 does not affect the Schedule to the Child Abduction Act 1984 in its application to a child who is the subject of—

(a)an order under section 18 of the Adoption Act 1976 freeing the child for adoption,

(b)a pending application for such an order, or

(c)a pending application for an order under section 12 of that Act.

The Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 (c. 41)E+W

22Paragraph 80 of Schedule 3 does not affect section 58A(2)(b) of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 in its application to proceedings under the Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36).

The Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 36)S

23Paragraph 84 of Schedule 3 does not affect section 86(6) of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 in its application to a child who becomes the subject of an order under section 18 or 55 of the Adoption Act 1976 by virtue of an application made before the repeal of that section.

Prospective

Section 139

SCHEDULE 5E+W+S+N.I.Repeals

Short title and chapterExtent of repeal
Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953 (c. 20).In section 10(3), the words following “the Family Law Reform Act 1987”.
Sexual Offences Act 1956 (c. 69).In section 28(4), the “or” at the end of paragraph (a).
Local Authority Social Services Act 1970 (c. 42).In Schedule 1, the entry relating to the Adoption Act 1976.
Adoption Act 1976 (c. 36).The whole Act, except Part 4 and paragraph 6 of Schedule 2.
Criminal Law Act 1977 (c. 45).In Schedule 12, the entries relating to the Adoption Act 1976.
National Health Service Act 1977 (c. 49).In section 124A(3), the “or” at the end of paragraph (a).
Domestic Proceedings and Magistrates’ Courts Act 1978 (c. 22).Sections 73(2), 74(2) and 74(4).
Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978 (c. 28).

In section 50, the words “not being a parent or guardian or relative of the child”.

Section 52.

In section 53(2), the words “England and Wales or”.

In section 65(1), in the definition of “order freeing a child for adoption”, paragraph (a) and the word “and” immediately following that paragraph.

Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 (c. 43).

In section 71(1) the words “(other than proceedings under the Adoption Act 1976)”.

In section 71(2) the words following “(a) and (b)”.

In Schedule 7, paragraphs 141 and 142.

British Nationality Act 1981 (c. 61).In section 1(8), the words following “section 50”.
Mental Health Act 1983 (c. 20).In Schedule 4, paragraph 45.
Health and Social Services and Social Security Adjudications Act 1983 (c. 41).

In Schedule 2, paragraphs 29 to 33, 35 and 36.

In Schedule 9, paragraph 19.

County Courts Act 1984 (c. 28).In Schedule 2, paragraph 58.
Child Abduction Act 1984 (c. 37).In section 1(5A)(a), the “or” at the end of sub-paragraph (i).
Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (c. 42).

In section 40(2)(a), after “the Adoption Act 1968”, the word “or”.

In Schedule 1, paragraph 20.

Child Abduction and Custody Act 1985 (c. 60).

In Schedule 3, in paragraph 1, the “and” at the end of paragraph (b).

In Schedule 3, in paragraph 1(c), paragraph (v).

Family Law Reform Act 1987 (c. 42).In Schedule 3, paragraphs 2 to 5.
Children Act 1989 (c. 41).

Section 9(4).

Section 12(3)(a).

In section 20(9), the “or” at the end of paragraph (a).

In section 26(2)(e) and (f), the words “to consider”.

Section 33(6)(b)(i).

Section 80(1)(e) and (f).

Section 81(1)(b).

Section 88(1).

Section 102(6)(c).

In section 105(1), the definition of “protected child”.

In Schedule 10, Part 1.

National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990 (c. 19).In Schedule 9, paragraph 17.
Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 (c. 37).In Schedule 4, paragraph 4.
Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 (c. 41).In Schedule 16, paragraph 7.
Local Government (Wales) Act 1994 (c. 19).In Schedule 10, paragraph 9.
Health Authorities Act 1995 (c. 17).In Schedule 1, paragraph 101.
Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999 (c. 18).

In section 2(6), the words “in its application to Scotland”.

Section 7(3).

Section 14.

In section 16(1), the words “, or section 17 or 56A of the 1976 Act,”.

In Schedule 2, paragraph 3.

Access to Justice Act 1999 (c. 22).In Schedule 13, paragraph 88.
Care Standards Act 2000 (c. 14).

In section 16(2), the words “or a voluntary adoption agency”.

In Schedule 4, paragraphs 5 and 27(b).

Local Government Act 2000 (c. 22).In Schedule 5, paragraph 16.
Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000 (c. 43).

Section 12(5)(b) and the preceding “and”.

In Schedule 7, paragraphs 51 to 53.

This Act.In Schedule 4, paragraphs 3 to 5 and 10 to 16.

Section 147

SCHEDULE 6E+W+S+N.I.Glossary

In this Act, the expressions listed in the left-hand column below have the meaning given by, or are to be interpreted in accordance with, the provisions of this Act or (where stated) of the 1989 Act listed in the right-hand column.

ExpressionProvision
the 1989 Actsection 2(5)
Adopted Children Registersection 77
Adoption and Children Act Registersection 125
adoption (in relation to Chapter 4 of Part 1)section 66
adoption agencysection 2(1)
adoption agency placing a child for adoptionsection 18(5)
Adoption Contact Registersection 80
adoption ordersection 46(1)
Adoption Servicesection 2(1)
adoption societysection 2(5)
adoption support agencysection 8
adoption support servicessection 2(6)
appointed day (in relation to Chapter 4 of Part 1)section 66(2)
appropriate Ministersection 144
Assemblysection 144
bodysection 144
by virtue ofsection 144
care ordersection 105(1) of the 1989 Act
childsections 49(5) and 144
child assessment ordersection 43(2) of the 1989 Act
child in the care of a local authoritysection 105(1) of the 1989 Act
child looked after by a local authoritysection 22 of the 1989 Act
child placed for adoption by an adoption agencysection 18(5)
child to be adopted, adopted childsection 49(5)
consent (in relation to making adoption orders or placing for adoption)section 52
the Conventionsection 144
Convention adoptionsection 66(1)(c)
Convention adoption ordersection 144
Convention countrysection 144
couplesection 144(4)
courtsection 144
disposition (in relation to Chapter 4 of Part 1)section 73
enactmentsection 144
feesection 144
guardiansection 144
informationsection 144
interim care ordersection 38 of the 1989 Act
local authoritysection 144
local authority foster parentsection 23(3) of the 1989 Act
Northern Irish adoption agencysection 144
Northern Irish adoption ordersection 144
noticesection 144
notice of intention to adoptsection 44(2)
overseas adoptionsection 87
parental responsibilitysection 3 of the 1989 Act
partner, in relation to a parent of a childsection 144(7)
placement ordersection 21
placing, or placed, for adoptionsections 18(5) and 19(4)
prohibited steps ordersection 8(1) of the 1989 Act
records (in relation to Chapter 5 of Part 1)section 82
registered adoption societysection 2(2)
registers of live-births (in relation to Chapter 5 of Part 1)section 82
registration authority (in Part 1)section 144
regulationssection 144
relativesection 144, read with section 1(8)
residence ordersection 8(1) of the 1989 Act
rulessection 144
Scottish adoption agencysection 144(3)
Scottish adoption ordersection 144
specific issue ordersection 8(1) of the 1989 Act
subordinate legislationsection 144
supervision ordersection 31(11) of the 1989 Act
unitary authoritysection 144
voluntary organisationsection 2(5)

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