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Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007, [S]

The Adoption and Children (Scotland) Bill was published on 28 March 2006 to modernise the adoption system and ensure more children and young people enjoy a stable home life. The Bill became an Act in 2007 and introduced new permanence orders and allowed for both partners in an unmarried couple to adopt jointly.

The Act repealed and replace the Adoption (Scotland) Act 1978, save for Part IV, and amended the Children (Scotland) Act 1995.

The Act will maintains existing adoption services and local authorities continue to have a duty to provide adoption services. Provisions are made to ensure that people have a broad range of support services, are able to access the provision and are clear about what services they would be provided. Existing provision for intercountry overseas adoption will remain but new restriction on bringing children into the country in certain circumstances will be introduced.

Key provisions outlined in the Bill as introduced:

  • Unmarried couples would be able to adopt jointly.
  • Local authorities would have a duty to provide a range of adoption services.
  • People directly affected by adoption would have a right to pre-adoption services, and post-adoption services.
  • The provision of support services would be a clearly stated part of the adoption process so that people know what services are available to them.
  • A permanence order would be introduced for children who cannot live with their families.

Part 1 makes provisions for the adoption service, including provisions regarding the adoption process and adoption support services. These provisions aim to modernise the law to secure more stability for vulnerable children.

Part 2 introduces new permanence orders. This order would allow parental responsibilities and parental rights relating to residence and guidance to pass to the local authority and allow other parental responsibilities and rights to be granted to appropriate people, including the child's parents.

Parts 3 and 4 deal with miscellaneous and general matters.

For more details see the Bill on the Scottish Parliament website.


28/03/06 - Bill introduced

2007 - Bill becomes Act

Further information

Bill (as introduced)
Explanatory Notes and other accompanying notes
Policy Memorandum
Delegated Powers Memorandum
Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007