Adoption questions

St. David’s provides adoption services across all of Wales and Herefordshire. We will also consider adoption enquiries from individuals who live on the border of this region.

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Adoption is a legal procedure in which the court transfers all parental rights and duties from the birth parents to the adoptive parent's. This gives the adoptive parent's the same rights as if the child was born to them.

Many children are unable to live with their birth family. These children will have come to the attention of the Local Authority because their families struggled to care for them.

The Department of Health estimate that there are currently 4,000 children in the care of local authorities in England and Wales waiting for adoptive families. Research by BAAF evidences that nearly 33% (1,500) of these children will not be placed for adoption primarily due to the shortage of new adoptive families.

Could you adopt one of these children?

Anyone over 21 years of age has the right to make an adoption application. While there is no upper age limit on who may adopt, there is an expectation that a prospective adopter will be able to parent a child to the age of majority.

The Society positively welcomes applications from :-

  • Married couples or couples in a civil partnership
  • Single people
  • Unmarried couples
  • Individuals and families with or without children
  • Families whose children are grown up
  • Disabled people
  • People of all racial backgrounds
  • People of all or no religious faith
  • Employed or unemployed
  • Homeowners or tenants with an assured tenancy
  • Adopters must be 21 years of age or over. Although there’s no upper age limit, there is an expectation that an adoptive family will be able to parent a child at least until the child is 18 years of age.

The Society welcomes applications from both those in employment and those who are unemployed. Financial help in the form of adoption allowances or other forms of support are increasingly available depending on the adopted child's needs and your financial circumstances.

We are a highly experienced, specialist adoption agency with 70 years experience in all aspects of adoption. We provide high quality preparation for adoption and comprehensive after adoption support services. We have long standing and positive contact with many of those who have become adoptive parents through the Society. We provide services across all of Wales and Herefordshire. Our boundaries can sometimes be flexible. Our head office is based in Cardiff. Our staff travel widely to provide excellent cover to those families living in other parts of our area.

Research by BAAF (2003) revealed that 96% of adoption applications presented to voluntary adoption agency panels were approved for adoption. St David's Children Society is a voluntary adoption agency.

Any record of offences will need to be explored. We ask you to tell us about these at the start of our contact with you. Many offences will not necessarily prevent someone adopting, but any offences against children would rule out an application. Our aim is to ensure that children are placed in safe and secure homes and for this reason we must take up CRB (Criminal Records Bureau ) checks and a range of other references. You should always tell us about any allegations made against you or enquiries pending. It is much better to be open with us from the beginning.

Everyone who wants to adopt has to have a medical report completed by their family doctor. Any health issues will be discussed with you. Again there are few conditions which would immediately rule someone out, but adopters are expected to be in good general health and to have a reasonable life expectancy. We will consider various lifestyle issues with you such as smoking and weight, because we want to ensure as far as is possible that children are placed with families who can meet their needs for a long time to come.

Medical costs.
You will be required to have a medical examination, usually with your own G.P. who will make a standard charge to you. This is currently in the region of £80 per person.

Legal expenses.
You won’t be expected to pay anything towards the cost of your assessment and preparation as adopters. However, after a child has been placed with you and has settled sufficiently for you to apply for a legal adoption order, then you will have to pay a court fee when you lodge your application for that order. This cost will be met by the local authority who currently has responsibility for the child, that is the authority who placed your child with you for adoption. The same Authority will also meet the cost of any legal fees if the adoption application is complex and legal representation is needed.

Financial support.
Local authorities are required to consider whether it is necessary for them to offer financial support to adopters where the child has particular needs. Any financial support offered will be assessed in relation to your income and the child’s needs. Allowances may be paid for a long term ongoing period, or as a one off lump sum. Such allowances do not affect the rights and responsibilities you have as an adoptive parent.

Child Benefit.
Adopters are entitled to claim child Benefit from the time the child comes to live with them. Adopters may also be entitled to Child Tax and Working Tax credit, dependent on their particular situation.

Do contact us if you would like to receive our Information Pack, speak to a Social Worker, or meet with us for an initial discussion. We would be really pleased to speak with you, without any obligation on your part. We look forward to hearing from you.


If you have any other questions please feel free to Contact Us