Written answers

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Department of Health and Children

Inter-Country Adoptions

12:00 pm

Photo of George LeeGeorge Lee (Dublin South, Fine Gael)
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Question 141: To ask the Minister for Health and Children the legal status of independent adoptions after the Adoption Bill 2009 is passed; if distinction will be made between couples who have clearance from the Health Service Executive for an independent adoption and those who do not; if there will be interim measures included in the Bill to allow those who have begun the process of an independent adoption to conclude it; if the Bill will require adoption processes from the point of declaration to receiving the child to be processed here by an agency which would be an accredited body; the way couples who wish to adopt ensure that they do not violate Part 1, section 4 of the Bill; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [44011/09]

Photo of Barry AndrewsBarry Andrews (Dún Laoghaire, Fianna Fail)
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The Adoption Bill, 2009, is designed to give force of law to the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-country Adoption. The new legislation, which incorporates the provisions of the Hague Convention, is designed to provide a framework to ensure that appropriate procedures have been followed and that all adoptions are effected in the best interests of the child.

With regard to the issue of 'independent' adoptions, I would draw the Deputy's attention to the provisions set out in Part 13 of the Adoption Bill which identify the restrictions on a person in seeking to make arrangements for adoptions. It also identifies the particular role of accredited authorities in this regard.

The current policy position, as set out in the Adoption Bill 2009, is that for an Adoption to be registered under the Bill it must be effected in a country with which Ireland has a bilateral agreement or have been effected prior to the new law.

The issue of transitional measures for prospective parents who are at a definable stage in the adoption process when the Bill is enacted and who wish to continue to adopt a child from non Hague, non bilateral country, is being examined. Prospective adoptive parents have waited a long time and it is my intention to be as flexible as possible in relation to applicants.


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