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Join us at our Adoption Information Event on 19/6/24

Find out more
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  • Book on to an Information Event
  • Download the Information Guide
  • The Children who need Adopting
  • The Application Process
  • Types of Adoption
  • Preparing for Adoption
  • FAQs
  • Adopter Stories
  • Ask the Adopter
  • Being an Adoptive Parent
  • LGBTQ+ Adoption
  • Early Permanence
  • Support and eLearning
  • Pre-Adoption
  • Post-Adoption
  • Adoption Support Fund
  • Education Support
  • Life Story Book
  • Talking About Adoption
  • Support for Adopted Children
  • Support for Adopted Adults
  • Support for Birth Families
  • Adoption Support Training Hub
  • Leicester
  • Leicestershire
  • Lincolnshire and Rutland
  • North Lincolnshire
  • Northamptonshire

Types of

Types of Adoption


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Traditional route into adoption

Children come into the care of their local authority for a number of reasons, usually when they have experienced or are at risk of significant harm (physical, emotional sexual abuse or neglect).

Children’s Services are given powers by the court to ensure the child is cared for safely. This often means the child is placed with foster carers while assessments are completed with birth families to help understand their capacity to parent their child. The birth family is also provided with support to help them care for their child. If it is decided that the parents or extended birth family are unable to care for the child, the child’s plan will become one of adoption.

This plan will be presented to court and if the court agrees they will make a placement order that gives Children’s Services the power to place a child with prospective adoptive parents. Family Adoption Links, along with the local authority caring for the child will identify a family who they believe can meet all the child’s needs throughout their life.

Second time adoption

We’re delighted to be able to help those who have adopted already to become parents for a second or even a third time. This may be when a birth sibling of their adopted child arrives or they decide they want to add to their family once more.

If you have adopted with us before we will already have a lot of the required information on file meaning that the application process may be completed in less time (around 4 months).

When is the right time?

Our Social Workers will help you to consider how adding to your family will affect your child and advise you on how long you should wait before you adopt again (we generally agree a minimum of 1 year from the date of your adoption order). We’ll also support you in thinking about the age difference between your current child and the new addition taking into account the needs of the whole family.

If you’d like to speak to us about second time adoption, please get in touch with your local Family Adoption Links partner by calling 0300 3301440.

Things to consider when adopting for the second time

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Intercountry Adoption

Intercountry adoption is the process by which you adopt a child from a country other than your own through permanent legal means and then bring that child to your country of residence to live with you permanently.

Our intercountry adoption service for Leicester, Leicestershire, North Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire is provided by the Yorkshire Adoption Agency.  If you are from Lincolnshire, please contact Family Adoption Links Lincolnshire directly to discuss intercountry adoption.

When adopting from abroad, it is important to note that you must be eligible to adopt both within the UK as well as from the relevant country overseas. Sometimes, that country’s eligibility criteria might be different or more stringent than the UK’s, so the first step for potential adopters is to check their eligibility.

Find out more information.

Step parent adoption

If you’re a step parent wishing to adopt your spouse’s/partner’s child, the first thing you need to do is contact your local authority. You must do this at least 3 months before applying to a court for an adoption order. Please note, the child must have lived with both of you for at least 6 months.

The process to adopt is similar to an assessment through an adoption agency and will be used to help a court decide if you can adopt the child (rather than being sent to an independent adoption panel).

The court will ask your local council to provide a report on:

  • your partner
  • the child
  • the other birth parent

The report will be prepared by a Social Worker and will be used to help the court make decision. If granted, the adoption court order gives you along with your spouse/partner parental responsibility for the child.

The order then takes away parental responsibility from:

  • the child’s other birth parent
  • anyone else who has parental responsibility for the child.

An adoption order cancels any other type of court order, such as how and when the child’s birth parent can visit the child.

More information…

If you would like further information on step parent adoption, please contact your local authority using the contact details below.

Family Adoption Links Leicester

(Telephone lines – Monday – Thursday, 10am – 2pm)

0116 454 1000

Family Adoption Links Leicestershire

(Telephone lines – Wednesday, 9am – 12 noon)

0116 305 0005

Family Adoption Links Lincolnshire and Rutland

01522 554114

Family Adoption Links North Lincolnshire

01724 297024