Politicians Call For State Inquiry Into Forced and Illegal Adoptions

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Researching Reform

Several high profile MPs in Ireland have called on the Irish government to launch an inquiry into forced adoption practices and illegal adoptions in the country.

A motion submitted by Clare Daly to the Lower House of the Irish Parliament was supported by Mick Wallace, Joan Collins, Catherine Connolly, Maureen O’Sullivan, Thomas Pringle and Thomas Broughan, reports the Irish Examiner.

Daly also told Parliament that a separate inquiry into adoption practices was essential.

Children’s minister Katherine Zappone carried out a scoping exercise in January on illegal births after illegal registrations were exposed at an adoption agency in Ireland. The scale of the problem is believed to be much larger than previously thought.

The review’s report has not yet been published. Daly remarked during the session in Parliament that “the review itself is limited to looking for evidence of illegal registrations and not illegal adoptions. The issues around this…

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Family Court Judges Could Be making Serious Mistakes In Their Judgments

Researching Reform

Family court judges can’t produce judgments immediately after each hearing as they move from case to case with no time in between each sitting to write up their rulings, a court of appeal judge said.

The revelation raises serious questions about the accuracy of judgments in the family courts, where judges find themselves writing up rulings long after hearings have concluded.

The possibility that judges may also be mixing up facts from the several cases they oversee before writing their judgments raises further concerns.

There is currently no information available on the time periods that elapse between the end of a hearing and when a family judge writes up a ruling for that hearing.

Lady Justice King sitting in the Court of Appeal told the parties at the hearing that family courts were overwhelmed with care applications from social services chiefs and that the volume of applications was placing huge…

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First Ever Post-Adoption Contact Appeal Confirms Adopters Have Final Say

Researching Reform

A couple asking for post-adoption contact with their daughter have lost their appeal.

Judges in the Court of Appeal concluded that a refusal to accommodate contact by the child’s adoptive parents trumped the toddler’s right to stay in contact with her birth family.

The case is believed to the first of its kind to reach the Court of Appeal since the implementation of s.51A in the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (ACA 2002). The legislation allows for contact with family members and other significant individuals in a child’s life, after adoption.

The judges hearing the case dismissed the challenge after the adopters in the case refused to accommodate contact between the toddler and her birth parents.

The judgment reinforces the current legal position that post-adoption contact will only be granted in rare cases and usually only where adopters agree to such an arrangement.

The birth parents who have learning difficulties…

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