House of Lords - Explanatory Note
Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Bill [H.L.] - continued          House of Lords

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Schedule 1: Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption

80.     Schedule 1 sets out the text of the Convention (so far as is material) under the following headings:

Chapter I: Scope of the Convention - Articles 1-3.

Chapter II: Requirements for intercountry adoption - Articles 4-5.

Chapter III: Central Authorities and Accredited Bodies - Articles 6-13.

Chapter IV: Procedural requirements in intercountry adoption - Articles 14-22.

Chapter V: Recognition and effects of the adoption - Articles 23-27.

Chapter VI: General Provisions - Articles 28-42.


81.     Financial effects of the Bill for local authorities are minimal. Welfare structures and adoption procedures required by the Convention are already in place in the United Kingdom as a result of earlier social services legislation.

82.     At present, section 57(3) of the Adoption Act 1976 provides for payment to be made to an adoption agency for services in connection with the adoption of a child in respect of expenses reasonably incurred by the agency. Adoption agencies raise charges in respect of services provided to prospective adoptive parents who apply to adopt a child from overseas; section 57(3) is not amended by this Bill. Also, so far as Central Authorities are concerned in meeting the requirements of the Convention, the work currently undertaken in connection with intercountry adoption will continue with no significant change.


83.     The Bill will have minimal effect on public service manpower. Certain provisions will require one or two additional procedures to be undertaken by adoption agencies but these will be more than compensated by manpower savings; the present necessity for local authority social services to make statutory welfare visits to adoptive families and prepare reports for the court will gradually reduce in proportion to the rise in Convention adoptions and the increased role for voluntary adoption agencies. The court services may be less occupied with adoption cases as Convention adoptions increase.


84.     The Bill contains provisions for making consequent regulations. Therefore, it is intended that this legislation will come into effect approximately one year after Royal Assent.

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Prepared: 16 june 1999