If you want to adopt a child from overseas, you should contact the Fostering and Adoption Service in Jersey for advice.
Whether you can adopt a child from overseas depends on the country the child lives in. The process of adopting also varies between countries.
Assessment by Fostering and Adoption Service
Before you adopt a child overseas, you'll need to be assessed in Jersey by the Fostering and Adoption Service to make sure you’re a suitable adopter.
The Fostering and Adoption Service will produce a report with recommendations, which will need to be approved through an independent panel process.
This will then be sent to the Department of Education in the UK, who will forward this to the overseas adoption agency.
The assessment and report will cost you £2,750, and the Department of Education may also charge you for the processing of all the papers you need. This could range from no fee to £1,775, depending on your income.
You can check GOV.UK for details on different countries' adoption requirements.
Intercountry adoption list of restricted countries on GOV.UK website
Registering an overseas adoption
Jersey and the UK have different rules on how overseas adoptions are recognised.
In the UK, which is party to the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption, adoptions made in a number of countries are automatically recognised.
In Jersey, which isn't yet party to this convention, an overseas adoption can be registered by the Superintendent Registrar in the adopted children register.
To register the adoption, you should first apply to the Royal Court asking the court to declare that the overseas adoption has ben effected under the law of a country outside the British Islands.
After the Royal Court makes the declaration, you can then apply to the Superintendent Registrar for the overseas adoption to be entered into the adoption children register.
It's your responsibility to get legal advice and provide the Royal Court with the necessary evidence to make a declaration.
You'll also be responsible for applying to the Superintendent Registrar for the adoption to be registered.
You can find a draft application for a declaration below, but this should not be substituted for independent legal advice.
Draft application for a declaration of an overseas adoption
Annuling an overseas adoption
The Royal Court can annul an overseas adoption if it doesn't appear to have been properly effected under the law of another country, or if the adoption conflicts with public policy.
If the Royal Court can’t make a declaration because of insufficient evidence, you may be able to apply to re-adopt a child originally adopted overseas.
In either case, you should seek legal advice first.