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The Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987

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Freeing child for adoption with parental agreementN.I.

17.[F1(1) Subject to paragraph (2), where, on the joint application of the parents or guardian of the child and an adoption agency, an authorised court is satisfied in the case of each parent or guardian that he freely, and with full understanding of what is involved, agrees—

(a)generally, and

(b)either unconditionally or subject only to a condition with respect to the religious persuasion in which the child is to be brought up,

to the making of an adoption order, the court shall make an order declaring the child free for adoption.]

(2) Where, on an application for an order under paragraph (1) in relation to a child, the mother of the child satisfies the court that her spouse [F2or civil partner] is not the father of the child, the court may make the order on the joint application of the mother and the adoption agency.

[F3(3) On the making of an order under paragraph (1), parental responsibility for the child is given to the adoption agency, and paragraphs (2) to (4) of Article 12 shall apply as if the order were an adoption order and the agency were the adopters.]

(4) Agreement by the mother of the child is ineffective for the purposes of this Article if given less than 6 weeks after the child's birth.

(5) Before making an order under paragraph (1), the court shall satisfy itself, in relation to each parent or guardian of the child who can be found, that he has been given an opportunity of making, if he so wishes, a declaration that he prefers not to be involved in future questions concerning the adoption of the child; and any such declaration shall be recorded by the court.

[F4(6) Before making an adoption order or an order under paragraph (1) in the case of a child whose father does not have parental responsibility for him, the court shall satisfy itself in relation to any person claiming to be the father that—

(a)he has no intention of applying for—

(i)an order under Article 7(1) of the Children (Northern Ireland) Order 1995, or

(ii)a residence order under Article 10 of that Order, or

(b)if he did make any such application, it would be likely to be refused.

(7) Paragraphs (5) and (7) of Article 12 shall apply in relation to the making of an order under this Article as they apply in relation to the making of an order under Article 12.]

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