Family Law Blog

The complexities of adoption

Posted by Malcolm Gittoes-Caesar on 11 Nov 2016

National Adoption Awareness Week, 6-12 November

Over the last few months, there has been a particular focus in the media with respect to delays in the Family Court of Australia and Federal Circuit Court of Australia, and the difficulty that those Courts have in dealing with, particularly, family violence issues that arise within families.

What has not garnered the same amount of attention, is adoption. The idea of what constitutes a family is evolving over time and, as a consequence of a number of issues (which can include the family violence problems that plague families involved in family law proceedings within the Family Court system) there can be a need for children to be adopted. Often times, that is within the child’s family, but there are other times where children don’t have the luxury of other family members being able to step in and care for them.

This week is National Adoption Awareness Week (NAAW). NAAW exists to raise awareness of adoption and the importance of permanency for children, and provides education on support needs of children and families. It is explicitly stated on the NAAW website that the purpose of NAAW is to “facilitate a community that looks after our most vulnerable – our children”.

Therefore, there are real parallels between the practice of family law, the involvement of parties in the Family Court of Australia and the adoption process. The Family Law Act has the best interests of children as the paramount principle upon which the Court makes decisions. Similarly, the purpose of adoption is to ensure that children are properly cared for and, by extension, their best interests met.

Adoption is a complicated process. There are a number of hurdles over which families need to jump to see a child be adopted into their family – regardless of whether it is an inter family adoption, or an inter country adoption. 

For more information on the adoption process contact our Accredited Family Law Specialist: