19 October 2012
Northern Ireland Allows Same-Sex & Unmarried Couples to Adopt Children
Our Family Law Solicitors discuss Northern Ireland and its new decision to allow same-sex and unmarried couples to adopt children.
A Judge in Belfast’s High Court decided on 18 October that unmarried and same-sex couples in Northern Ireland should be allowed to adopt children. In so doing, Mr Justice Seamus Treacy ruled that an Adoption Law from 1987 that discriminated against both groups was unlawful and amounted to a breach of human rights.
Prior to this decision, only married couples and single adults were eligible toAdoptin Northern Ireland. This was despite there being 2,500 children there in State care awaiting placement with loving families – irrespective of the adults’ sexual orientation.
This change will bring Northern Ireland's adoption policy into line with the rest of the United Kingdom, where gay and unmarried heterosexual couples have been recognised as perfectly suitable adoptive parents for many years now.
Slater and Gordon have offices across England, Scotland & Wales.