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PART IIIN.I.ADOPTION ORDERS

SupplementalN.I.

Notification to Board of adoption application, where child not placed by adoption agencyN.I.

22 .F1—(1) An adoption order shall not be made in respect of a child who was not placed with the applicant by an adoption agency unless the applicant has, at least 3 months before the date of the order, served notice on the Board[F2 or [F3HSC trust]] within whose area he has his home of his intention to apply for the adoption order.

[F4(1A) An application for such an adoption order shall not be made unless the person wishing to make the application has, within the period of two years preceding the making of the application, given notice as mentioned in paragraph (1).

(1B) In paragraphs (1) and (1A) the references to the area in which the applicant or person has his home are references to the area in which he has his home at the time of giving the notice.]

(2) On receipt of such a notice the Board[F2 or [F3HSC trust]] shall investigate the matter and submit to the court a report of its investigation and shall assist the court in any manner the court may direct.

(3) Under paragraph (2), the Board[F2 or [F3HSC trust]] shall in particular investigate,—

(a)so far as is practicable, the suitability of the applicant, and any other matters relevant to the operation of Article 9 in relation to the application; and

(b)whether the child was placed with the applicant in contravention of Article 11.

(4) A Board which receives notice under paragraph (1) in respect of a child whom the Board knows to be[F4 looked after by] another Board[F2 or of an [F3HSC trust]] shall, not more than 7 days after the receipt of the notice, inform that other Board[F2 or that trust] in writing, that it has received the notice.

[F2(5) An [F3HSC trust] which receives notice under paragraph (1) in respect of a child whom the trust knows to be[F4 looked after by] another [F3HSC trust] or of a Board shall, not more than 7 days after the receipt of the notice, inform that other [F3HSC trust] or that Board in writing, that it has received the notice.]

Enquiries to be made of Board, where child is to be placed by registered adoption societyN.I.

23.  Where[F5an appropriate voluntary organisation] is considering the placement of a child with any person for adoption,[F6the organisation] shall make enquiries of the Board[F7 or [F8HSC trust]] in whose area that person's place of residence is situated so that the Board[F7 or [F8HSC trust]] may inform[F6the organisation] whether or not there is any reason to believe that the proposed adoption would be detrimental to the child.

Reports to court where child placed by agencyN.I.

24.—(1) Where an application for an adoption order relates to a child placed by an adoption agency, the agency shall submit to the court a report on the suitability of the applicants and any other matters relevant to the operation of Article 9 and shall assist the court in any manner the court may direct.

(2) Arrangements may be made by an adoption agency which has placed a child for its functions in relation to that child with respect to the report on the suitability of the applicants for adoption and any other matters relevant to the operation of Article 9 to be discharged by another adoption agency where unforeseen and exceptional circumstances make such an arrangement necessary.

Restrictions on making adoption ordersN.I.

25.—(1) The court shall not proceed to hear an application for an adoption order in relation to a child where a previous application for a British adoption order made in relation to the child by the same persons was refused by any court unless—

(a)in refusing the previous application the court directed that this paragraph should not apply, or

(b)it appears to the court that because of a change in circumstances or for any other reason it is proper to proceed with the application.

(2) The court shall not make an adoption order in relation to a child unless it is satisfied that the applicants have not, as respects the child, contravened Article 59.

[F9(3) In this Article “British adoption order” means—

(a)an adoption order or an order under the Adoption Act (Northern Ireland) 1967; or

(b)an order under any provision for the adoption of a child effected under the law of any of the following countries, that is to say, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and a colony, which is a British territory for the purposes of section 24 of the Adoption Act 1976.]

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

Interim ordersN.I.

26.—(1) Where on an application for an adoption order the requirements of Articles 16(1) and 22(1) are complied with, the court may postpone the determination of the application and make an order[F10 giving parental responsibility for the child to] the applicants for a probationary period not exceeding 2 years upon such terms for the maintenance of the child and otherwise as the court thinks fit.

(2) Where the probationary period specified in an order under paragraph (1) is less than 2 years, the court may by a further order extend the period to a duration not exceeding 2 years in all.

Art. 27. rep. by 1995 NI 2