Adoption Act 2010

High Court may give custody of child to prospective adopters and authorise dispensing with consent to adoption.

31.— (1) In this section—

“ applicants ” means the person or persons referred to in subsection (2)(a);

“ other person ” means the person referred to in subsection (2) (b).

(2) Where—

(a) a person has or persons have applied for an adoption order, and

(b) another person, whose consent to the making of the adoption order is necessary under section 26 , and who has agreed to the placing of the child concerned for adoption either—

(i) fails, neglects or refuses to give his or her consent to the adoption, or

(ii) having previously consented to the adoption, withdraws his or her consent,

the applicants for the adoption order may apply to the High Court for an order under subsection (3).

(3) If satisfied that it is in the best interests of the child to do so, the High Court may make an order—

(a) giving custody of the child to the applicants for a specified period, and

(b) authorising the Authority to dispense with the other person’s consent to the adoption of the child by the applicants, with the adoption to be effected by an adoption order made during that specified period of custody.

(4) If the other person is a ward of court, his or her consent shall not be dispensed with, pursuant to an order under this section, except with the sanction of the court which granted the order for wardship.