(Family Division, Moor J, 21 June 2012)
The applicants, being unable to conceive their own biological child, offered to care for their niece when her parents found themselves unable to care for her themselves. Following the child's birth they took part in a religious ceremony in India, where the child was born, which was registered by deed by the registrar in the local court. It was consented to and signed by all four parties.
Following the adoption the child returned with the applicants to the UK and had resided in this jurisdiction under a visitor's visa. The applicants now sought recognition of the Indian adoption order. The birth parents had acknowledged service and indicated that they had no intention of opposing the order.
The safeguarding assessments were positive about the child's care and indicated that the applicants were able to meet all of her needs and that the baby was contented. Expert evidence was provided which made clear that the process under the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act 1956 was in line with the practice in other countries.
The judge granted the order for recognition.