To mark National Adoption week we are looking at some of the most frequently asked questions about adoption.
Adoption is a legal process where the legal relationship of parent and child is created by an order of the court.
Couples can apply to adopt a child jointly if they are married to each other; living together as if husband and wife; civil partners of each other; or living together as if civil partners.
The relationship should be stable and settled, though this is not a legal requirement.
Each member of the couple must be 21 or over and neither of them can be a parent of the child to be adopted.
A single person can adopt so long as he or she is 21 years or older.
If the single person used to be part of a couple then he or she needs to be able to show that either they have permanently separated, or that the spouse or partner cannot be found or is unable to participate in the adoption because of ill-health.
An individual in a relationship with a child’s parent can adopt the child.
The applicant must be 21 years or over and the parent must be 18 or over.
No. Only a child may be adopted in Scotland.
A child for the purposes of adoption is generally a person under the age of 18 years who has never been married or a registered civil partner.
A person 18 years or over may be adopted if the application for the adoption order was made before the person’s 18th birthday.
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