How long does it take to adopt a child in the UK?

How long does it take to adopt a child in the UK?

The thought of extending your family is so exciting.

Adopting a child is an incredible and rewarding way to do this. All children deserve love and attention, especially from a young age. Adopted children will often have much better outcomes than if they were to stay with their biological families.

Whatever your reason for adoption, whether it’s age, fertility issues, or the relationship you’re in – we’ll be discussing the entire process, including how long it takes to adopt a child in the UK.

Considering Adoption

Starting a family through adoption is a wonderful way to bring a child into your life. It’s a huge decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly, especially as you’ll be dealing with children who may have suffered significant trauma at an early age.

However, it’s important to remember that not only are you giving that child a fresh start in life, but you’re also providing them with a positive and comfortable home environment.

Many couples dream of starting their own family, but for some, this isn’t always possible. Studies show that around 1 in 7 couples may have difficulty conceiving.

We understand that infertility can cause strain in relationships. However, it’s so important to ensure you and your partner are honest with your feelings so that you have a happy and healthy foundation before you consider adoption.  

Where to begin

You can choose to adopt through a voluntary organisation or local authority. For the latest adoption news and information, First4Adoption is a government-run website dedicated to new and existing adoptive parents.  

The first stage of the adoption process in England and Wales involves some initial checks and registration. Your chosen adoption agency will gather references and carry out background checks, which will take around two months to complete.

Going through the process

Once your checks have been completed, the next stage involves training and assessment, which usually takes around four months. You’ll be assigned a social worker who will assess you and see if you’re a good fit to become an adoptive parent. Your case will then be presented to an adoption panel.

If your case is approved – congratulations! You’ll be taken through the matching process, where your adoption agency will work with local authorities to find the most suitable child for you. Once a successful match has been found, you can then apply to the court to become their legal parent(s).

The adoption process takes around six months to complete. It can be an overwhelming and unpredictable experience, so it’s worth seeking the support of a child law solicitor to guide you through the process. A friendly and supportive legal team will handle your case with professionalism and care.

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