The department of health has published a new intercountry
adoption guide, prompted by changes to the law arising out of the
Kilshaws’ internet twins case.
Two new sections of the Adoption (Intercountry Aspects) Act 1999
will come into force, as well as a set of regulations. These extend
the duties on local council adoption services in England and Wales
to cover both domestic and overseas adoptions. In addition, it will
be an offence for a British resident to bring a child into the UK
for adoption without following the procedures in the new
In future, prospective overseas adopters will have to be
assessed and approved by a local authority or voluntary adoption
agency and be issued with a certificate of eligibility from the
secretary of state for health. Failing this they will be guilty of
an offence punishable by up to three months in prison and/or a fine
of up to £5,000.