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ADOPTION: R and H v UK (App No 35348/06)
Date:11 JUL 2011

(European Court of Human Rights; 31 May 2011)

A child was removed from its parents on a number of occasions because of concerns about the mother's alcohol consumption. Eventually, the child was freed for adoption despite parental opposition. Some of other the siblings were allowed to stay with the parents.

Held that the freeing order was not a breach of the parents' Art 8 rights.  Procedurally, they were able to participate fully in the proceedings sufficiently to protect their interests and there were sound practical reasons for the 2-stage procedure. The efforts of the authorities to find prospective adopters who would support post adoption contact, even though this followed the making of the freeing order, remedied the defects of the initial judgment and helped justify dispensing with parental consent.