However, without proper identification of the birth father, he may not be able to exercise his parental rights or give consent. See A and B v Rotherham MBC [2014] EWFC 47 Fam. A contested adoption occurs when an objecting birth father is legally entitled to claim parental rights, but the adoption can be granted if the birth father is unfit to parent the child. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. It is largely their responsibility to repair their working relationship with him”. In December last year Holman J refused an adoption order in a case where the father had only been identified after the making of the placement order and placement of the child. I have never persuaded anyone. Either you must agree, or the court must decide to go ahead without your agreement. There is a fee (£15) to register yourself to connect with your family members. International and UK law make it clear that placing a child for adoption without the agreement of each parent can only be done if the child’s welfare requires the child to be adopted and the parents’ consent to be dispensed with (Adoption and Children Act 2002 section 52, UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, Human Rights Convention ‘right to family life’). From what i have gathered from our current experience, during the first hearing the birth parents can notify the court that they wish to contest. For instance, if a birth parent disagrees that the child should be adopted by one particular family, he could suggest the alternative that another family be allowed to adopt. I’ve gone through the judgement and given my own views for what they’re worth. The judgment of Russell J is on appeal, and the order stayed, so little W remains with the adoptive family for the time being. Although a number have passed the permission hurdle they have often failed in the substantive matter because of the risk and disruption associated with a return home. Sometimes a birth mother may be reluctant to disclose details about the birth father, perhaps out of fear that he will not consent to the adoption. What drove this in each case??? Add message | Report | See all. Russell J is highly – highly – critical of the local authority. What are you going to tell her? The outcome will turn on when the birth father objected, the particular facts of the case, and the applicable laws. But the main issue is W’s welfare and best interests and I think they are best served by remaining with the adopters. This must have been a case where the ground was constantly shifting beneath everybody’s feet. However, like any other court case, it's important that you have some legal ground to stand on and, if possible, experienced legal representation. The potential long term fallout of leaving her where she, couple with the strong presumption in favour of biological family “last resort”, was probably what swung it. Social policy and legislation prioritised the rights of adopters to privacy about the fact of their child’s adoption over the needs of the child and their birth parents. Please seek legal advice. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. Kathy Mason and Peter Selman present findings from research evaluating birth parents' experiences of contesting the adoption of their child(ren) which was carried out as part of a wider evaluation (see references) of ‘Parents Without Children’, an innovative project offering support for non-relinquishing birth parents. Extraordinary for a number of reasons. What swung it for the psychologist, who ultimately recommended return to dad, can be summarised with this quote from his oral evidence : I think most important argument knowing what Court of Appeal decided what are you going to say to child when she is 12 or 13 or 14 what are you going to tell her and say? (Austerberry et al, 2013) Foster carers, therefore, need practical and emotional support to meet the challenges that often emerge both during and after contact. The thing is they can't just contest they are only asking for permission to appeal. The LA were responsible it appears for making a “misleading, damaging and inaccurate referral” to the Local Authority Designated [Safeguarding] Officer (LADO), which resulted in the father losing his employment. By the time the adoption application came on the child had been living with the prospective adopters for some 16 months – give or take for half of her little life. The Russell judgement was unceremoniously dumped by the CoA in December 2015. http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2015/1284.html. It's important that, if a birth parent's case is to be taken seriously, the parent put forth a reason she is contesting the adoption as the birth parent. Last week the Transparency Project, an organisation which seeks to promote the transparency of proceedings within the family courts, published findings from a Freedom of Information request into adoption targets. I am not going to go on,but one particular aspect leapt out at me. The words “expensive farce” come to mind. Which is an argument parent’s frequently put forward. PAC-UK offers specialist therapy, advice, support,counselling and training for all those affected by adoption and permanency. Other reasons, such as the adoptive parents being unfit or the adoption being handled in a misleading fashion, are cases you could bring up to contest an adoption's legitimacy. 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