01481 223182 familyplacementservice@gov.gg


When decisions are being made about the long term care needs of children, depending on the age and needs of the child, adoption is a recommendation that can be made. Adoption is a legal way of securing permanent families for children who cannot remain with their own parents or extended birth family. Adopted children lose all legal ties with their birth families and become full members of their adopted families.

If you're thinking about adoption and would like to know a little bit more about it, we've put together some further information below to help answer some of your questions.

  • What kind of children need to be adopted?

    • In Guernsey, as in most parts of the UK, there are very few babies under 1 year of age needing adoptive families and plans for adoption tend to be for children between the ages of one and eight years. We also have sibling groups of children that need to be placed together as well as children with disabilities and other medical conditions.

      Each child`s circumstances are different but every child will have faced loss and separation from their birth family which in itself is traumatic, alongside other experiences of trauma in their past.
  • Who can adopt?  

    • We welcome adoptive parents of all genders, sexual orientations, ethnicity, religions and backgrounds. You can adopt as a single person or in a couple, own your own home or rent, whether married, in a civil partnership or in an enduring family relationship. You can also adopt whether or not you already have children.

      You do need to be at least 25 years of age, have a spare bedroom, have had a two year gap following a significant life event (i.e. bereavement) and not be actively undergoing fertility treatment or intending to do so.
  • What is the difference between fostering and adoption?  

    • When children and young people are in foster care the Committee for Health and Social Care share legal parental responsibility with their birth parents. Foster carers receive delegated authority to provide day to day care for them. Fostering can also be temporary and short term or it could be the plan until adulthood and social workers will remain actively involved throughout children and young people's time in care.  If you're interested in fostering, you can read more about it here.

      In comparison, following the making of an Adoption Order in Court, the adoptive parents will gain legal parental responsibility for the child and the birth parents will lose this. At this point, social workers will no longer need to remain involved however support remains available for adoptive parents to access throughout their child's childhood.

      Legally, Adoption is the most secure form of placement however it will depend on the individual needs of the child or young person as to the best way to meet their needs long term if they are not able to return home to family. Younger children who cannot return to live with family tend to be placed for adoption. Post adoption contact is facilitated by the Reparative Care Team mainly in the form of indirect letterbox contact but some older adopted children may have direct contact post adoption with their birth family. Older children tend to be placed in long term foster care, continuing to have direct contact with their birth family on a more regular basis.

  • Are there different ways I can adopt?

    • Local adoption- There are a number of children in Guernsey each year whose long term plan is for adoption. We promote on island adoptions in order to enable our children to remain in Guernsey which is of significant importance to their identity. In the circumstances where it has been a significant period of time where you have not been matched with a local child, UK adoptions may be considered.

      Inter-country adoption- We have an agreement with IAC, The Centre for Adoption, to advise enquirers about adopting a child from abroad. Should you be interested in this form of adoption please contact us in the first instance and we can provide some initial information for you to consider as this is a complex area of adoption which entails significant cost to the adopters. Following this ,should you require further information on Inter Country Adoption, please contact IAC, The Centre for Adoption on 0208 447 4753. Alternatively you can email info@icacentre.org.uk.

      Step-parent adoption- If you are living with your partner and their child or young person and wish to become a legal parent to them, adoption is an option.  However our Service is not involved in step parent adoptions so if this is something you are interested in please contact the Greffe on 01481 725277 or hmgreffier@guernseyroyalcourt.gg for more information.

  • What training and support will I receive as an adoptive parent?

    • Being an adoptive parent, whilst very rewarding, can have its challenges so ongoing support is available to help you. This can be sought out at any time, even after an Adoption Order has gone through and for the duration of their childhood. This includes psychological consults, therapeutic lifestory work, support groups and ongoing training.

      Have a look at our Community and Support page for further details of how we can support you as an adoptive parent.

  • How do I become an Adoptive parent?

    • Please take a look here to see the process for becoming an Adoptive parent. 

Contact Us

Tel: +44(0) 1481 223182



St Peter Port 

Guernsey GY1 1FB

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