A staged approach starting with the termination of the parental rights. Parental rights are automaticly given to the birth parents and can be revoked by the parents and the courts.This must occur before a child is considered to be legally free for adoption. Termination of parental rights can be voluntary or involuntary, that is, with or without the birthparents' agreement.
An adoption is considered to be high risk if the rights have not yet been terminated, and it is expected that they may not be, because a birthparent or other relative will decide (and be approved) to parent. As such the adoption of newborn infants is often considered high risk. Although couples enter into arrangements with a birthing mother there is a time period during which he/she can change his/her mind (revoke consent). Therefore if you are adopting an infant privately or from abroad, your lawyer will play a larger role, and you will want to take care in selecting the right individual.
You may be able to adopt a child if you’re aged 21 or over. You can be single, married, in a civil partnership, an unmarried couple (same sex and opposite sex) or the partner of the child’s parent. You do not have to be a UK citizen to adopt a child, but: you (or your partner, if you’re a couple) must have a fixed and permanent home in the UK, Channel Islands or the Isle of Man. You (and your partner, if you’re a couple) must have lived in the UK for at least 1 year before you begin the application process Funding: You may be able to get funding from the Adoption Support Fund. It provides money for therapy for children and families to help improve relationships, confidence and behaviour.
Fosterering a child is usually a temporary arrangement. Responsibility for the child is shared. Yet Fostering can be a long term arrangement. Adoption is a perminent arrangement, where you take on the role as thelegal guardian of the child and responsibility for that child is not shared.
To adopt in Scotland you need to apply through the social work department in Scotland. It usually takes at least six months for social workers from an adoption agency to get to know prospective adopters, assess them and help prepare them for the task ahead. Confidential enquiries will be made of the local social services or social work department and the police. Applicants will be examined by their GP and will be asked to provide personal references from friends.
In Scotland prospective adopters can ask for a review - and a number of the agencies have established robust procedures for doing this. For advice on this please contact your appointed family lawyer who can advise you how best to approach the situation, you can also optain information the BAAF's Scottish office.