Adoption Law Manual
STAR RATING: 3/5
The Adoption Law Manual is good in parts but fails to deliver any real insights into how the new adoption legislation, the Adoption and Children Act 2002, is likely to operate in practice, writes Ed Mitchell.
The book’s historical account of the development of adoption law is perceptive and places the new Act in its proper context. It is also comprehensive, encompassing both substantive adoption law and local authority responsibilities in relation to adoption. An added bonus is that the book takes the time to address legal differences between England and Wales – an issue that is all too often swept under the carpet.
The downside is that it is too vague when it comes to considering how the courts are likely to apply the new legislation. Yes, we know that authoritative rulings necessarily lie in the future but that does not bar anyone from engaging in the art of intelligent legal prediction. Indeed, without that sort of analysis, a book of this sort adds little value to the official guides and other material freely available on the internet.
It is also extremely coy when addressing the human rights context to adoption. There is enough case law around to outline a clear exposition of the human rights framework to adoption, but that is missing here.
Ed Mitchell is a solicitor, editor of Social Care Law Today and Community Care’s legal expert