Children taken into the care of the local authority may be placed for adoption if a court finds both parents are not able to parent them properly.
Within the private law field, a couple or single parent may apply to adopt a child from outside the family, or they may seek to adopt a child of one of them, following a second marriage for example.
In either case, there is a set procedure of assessment by an adoption social worker which can take many months, and filing an application with the Family Court, to start off the whole process.
Belinda Smith does not have a legal aid franchise, but frequently represents extended family members, such as grandparents and aunts and uncles of children in the care system who otherwise risk being placed permanently outside the family due to their mother and/or father’s inability to look after them. The extended family, if approved by the court, will be able to offer a long term home for the child or children, either by way of a Special Guardianship or adoption order.
For private adoptions, we can provide you with advice about the legal formalities and if required represent you in the court application.