Our articles are written by experts in their field and include barristers, solicitors, judges, mediators, academics and professionals from a range of related disciplines. Family Law provides a platform for debate for all the important topics, from divorce and care proceedings to transparency and access to justice. If you would like to contribute please email emma.reitano@lexisnexis.co.uk.
A day in the life Of...
Read on

Myths and misunderstanding in adoption law and policy [2015] CFLQ 331

Date:2 DEC 2015
Third slide

Keywords: Contested adoption – policy – Re BRe B-S – Court of Appeal

Adoption without the consent of birth parents is a controversial area of law and policy. It is argued in this article that the law on dispensing with parental consent, in England and Wales, has been cast into doubt by a series of contradictory government policies and court judgments since 2013. The development of the law since the implementation of the Adoption and Children Act 2002 is examined, to show how the position has become incoherent through unintended consequences and mis-communications. A policy guide issued to practitioners was dubbed ‘the mythbuster’, on the premise that myths had formed about adoption law. Judges have said that the cases have been misunderstood. If myths and misunderstandings have flourished, this is the result of poor communication and mixed messages from the courts and policy makers. There is public disagreement about whether or not the law has changed, and whether adoption in England and Wales is markedly different to that in other European jurisdictions. It is concluded that families and practitioners need clarity on when adoption is to be encouraged or discouraged. Priority should then be given to supporting processes from the outset and to long-term stability in adoption and for all suitable types of alternative placements for children in care.

Articles CFLQ