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Adoption and Children Act 2002

Section 2: Basic definitions

26.Section 2 sets out some basic definitions, including the definition of an “adoption society” and a “registered adoption society”, which must be a body corporate. An adoption society is a body whose functions consist of or include making arrangements for the adoption of children.  They may also include the provision of adoption support services.  Subsection (1) provides that the services provided under section 3(1) are to be known as “the Adoption Service” and that a local authority or a registered adoption society may be referred to as an “adoption agency”. Section 13(3) of the Care Standards Act 2000 provides for the registration authority to grant an application for registration either unconditionally or subject to such conditions as it thinks fit. A registered adoption society is treated as registered in respect of any facility of the Adoption Service for the purposes of the Act unless it is a condition of its registration that it may not provide that facility (subsection (3)).  Subsection (8) states that the references in this Chapter to adoption are to the adoption of persons wherever they may be habitually resident, effected under the law of any country or territory.

27.Subsection (6) provides that adoption support services include counselling, advice and information in relation to adoption. Regulations will set out what other services are to fall within this definition. Subsection (7) provides that the Secretary of State must exercise the power under section 2(6)(b) to make regulations so as to secure that local authorities provide financial support.

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