Children (Adoption of) Act


Published: 1958-01-02

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CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF)

THE CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF) ACT

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

1. Short title.

2. Interpretation.

3. Establishment of Adoption Board.

Expenses of Board.

4. Restriction on making arrangement for the adoption of children.

5. Duties of Board.

6. Provisions relating to arrangements made by Board.

7. Appeals by persons desirous of adopting children.

8. Regulations.

9. Power to make adoption orders.

10. Restrictions on making adoption orders.

1 1 . Consent to adoption.

12. Interim orders.

13. Evidence of consent of parent or guardian.

14. Functions of Court as to adoption orders.

Effects of adoption orders

IS. Rights and duties of parents and capacity to marry.

16. Affiliation orders, etc.

17. Intestacies, wills and settlements.

18. Provisions supplementary to section 17.

19. Power to make subsequent order in respect of child already subject to
an order.

19A. Legitimation. i
1

20. Jurisdiction and procedure.

20A. Appeal.

2 1. Restriction on advertisements.

22. Provisions as to existing de facto adoptions.

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CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF)

23. Restriction on sending children abroad for adoption.

24. Licence to send child abroad for adoption.

25. ~do~ted'children Register.
26. Minister may amend monetary penalties.

SCHEDULES

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CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF)

Laws
75 of 1956.

THE CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF) ACT Acts 2 of 1964,
42 of 1969

3rd Sch.

[2nd January. 1958.1 ii ;' :;$
2nd Sch..

36 of 1976
Sch.

I of 1979.
1st Sch.

15 of 1982,
7 of 2011
3rd Sch.

' 1. This Act may be cited as the Children (Adoption of) Shorttatle.
Act.

; 2 4 1 ) In this Act- * Interpreta-
tion.

"adopter" means a person who is to adopt, or
who has adopted a child in pursuance of an adoption
order;

"adoption order" means an order made under section 9;
"child" means a person under the age of eighteen years who 111979

' has never been married; ' . I st S C ~ .
"Court" means any court having jurisdiction to make adop-

tion orders under this Act (and, accordingly, shall be 4111975
construed in a manner consistent with paragraph (a) of 2nd Sch
subsection (2) );

"guardian" in relation to a child means a person appointed
by deed or will or by a court of competent juris-

a diction, to be his guardian;
"relative" in relation to any child, means a grandparent, 3611976

brother, sister, uncle, aunt, whether of the full blood, of SCh.
the half blood or by affinity, and includes, where an
adoption is made in respect of the child or any other
person, my person who would be a relative of the child
within the meaning of this definition if the adopted
person were the child of the adopter born in
wedlock.

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4 CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF)

L.Nn. (2) In this Act any reference-
149178.

64/80.
(a) to a Resident Magistrate's Court, in so far as such refer-

ence may, apart from this subsection, relate to a Resi-
dent Magistrate's Court-

(i) for a Corporate Area parish, shall (as respects
any time on or after the 13th day of November,
1978) be construed as a reference to the Family
Court-Corporate Area Region; and

(ii) for a parish within the geographical jurisdiction
of a Family Court established pursuant to Part I1
of the Judicature (Family h u r t ) Act, shall (as
respects any time on or after the date on which
such Court is established) ,be construed as a

,reference to that Family Court;

(b) to a Resident Magistrate, in so far as it may, apart
from this subsection, relate to a ~es ident Magist-
rate-

(i) for a Corporate Area parish, shall (as res-
pects any time on or after the 13th day of
November, '1 978) be construed as a reference to
a Judge of the Family Court-Corporate Area
Region; and

(ii)' for a parish within the geographical jurisdic-
tion of a Family Court established pursuant to
Part I1 of the Judicature (Family Court) Act,
shall (as respects any time on or after the date
on which such Court is established) be cons-
trued as a reference to a Judge of that Family
Court.

(3) In subsection (2), "Corporate Area parish" means the
parish of Kingston or the parish of Saint Andrew.

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CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF) 5 .

3.-41) For the purposes of this Act a Board to be called Establish-
the Adoption Board (in this Act hereinafter referred to as the :::;:in
Board) shall be established which shall consist of a chairman Board.
and not more than nine other members to be appointed by the
Minister.

(2) A member of the Board shall hold office for such 3711974
.period not exceeding two years, as may be specified in the S. 2 (a).

instrument appointing him, so, however, that the Minister may
revoke his appointment before the expiration of such period,
if he considers it expedient so to do.

(3) At any meeting of the Board from which the chair-
man is absent the members present shall appoint one of their
number to oficiate as chairman of that meeting.

(4) The quorum of the Board shall be five.

(5) The Minister may appoint any person to act in the
place of any member of the Board in case of the absence or
inability to act of such member.

(6) The Board shall have power to regulate their own
procedure.

(7) (a) The Board may appoint and employ at such re- 3711974
muneration and on such terms and conditions as it thinks fit, 2(b).
such officers, agents and servants as it thinks necessary for the
proper carrying out of its functions under this Act:

Provided that no appointment to any post to which an annual
salary in excess of four thousand dollars is assigned, shall be
made without the prior approval of the Minister.

(b) The expenses of the Board (including the re- E,,enses
muneration of the staff thereof) shall be defrayed out of sums OfBOard.

0 provided for the purpose in the annual estimates of revenue and expenditure of the Island as approved by the House of Repre-
selltatives.

(8) The Board may appear and be represented at any
stage of the proceedings in a Court by one of their officers
or by any person generally or specially authorized by the
Board.

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6 CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF)

Restriction
on making
arrangement
for the adop-
tion of child-
ren.

7/2011
Sch.

4.--(1) Subject to the provisions of skction 5 of this Act, if
any person takes part in arranging an adoption for gain or
reward or in the management or control of a body of persons
other than the Board which exists wholly or in part for the
purpose of making arrangements for the adoption of children, he
shall, on summary conviction before a'Resident Magistrate be
liable to imprisonment for a term .not exceeding six months, or
to a fine not exceeding five hundred thousand dollars, or to both
such imprisonment and such fine.

(2) For the purposes of this Act, a person shall be
deemed to make arrangements for the adoption of a child if
he, not being the parent or guardian of the child, enters into
or makes any agreement or arrangement for, or for facilitating,
the adoption of 'the child by any other person, whether
the adoption is effected or is intended to be effected, in
pursuance of an adoption order or otherwise, or if he initiates
or takes part in any negotiations of which the purpose or
effect is the conclusion of any agreement or the making
of any arrangement therefor, or if he causes another so
to do.

Duties of 5. It shall be the duty of the Board-
Board.

(a) to make arrangements for the adoption of children and
for that purpose to receive applications from parents,
guardians and adopters;

(b) to do such things and make' such investigations con-
cerning the adoption of-children for the consideration
of the Court as may be prescribed under section 8.

, ,
.?

Provisions 6.--(1) Where arrangements are made by the Board for
relating to
arrangements the adoption of a child, an application to the Court for an
madeby adoption order in respect of the child shall not be made by
Board
211 964 the adopter &ti1 the expiration of a period of three months
s. 3. from the date upon which the child is delivered into the care

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CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF)

and possession of the adopter pursuant to the arrangements and
at any time during that period-

(a) the adopter may give notice in writing to the Board of
his intention not to adopt the child; or

(b) the Board may cause notice in writing to be given
to the adopter of their intention not to allow the
child to remain in the care and possession of the
adbpter, '

and where a notice is so given, the adopter shall, within seven
days of the date on which the notice was given, cause the
child to be returned to the Board for the purpose of restoring
the child to the parents or guardian.

(2) The Board shall appoint oni or more persons' whose 211964
duty shall be to keep the child under close supervision
during the said period of three months in accordance with regu-
lations made under this Act.

(3) If, at the expiration of the said period of three 211964
months, no notice has been given as aforesaid, the adopter S 3.

shall within tdee months from the date upon which that
period so expired apply to the Court for an adoption order
in respect of the child or shall give notice in writing to the
Board of his intention not to apply for slich an order, and,
where notice is so given or where an application for an
adoption order in respect of the child is refused by the Court,
the adopter shall, within seven d a 6 of ;he date on which
the notice was given or of the date upon which the application
is so refused, as the case may be, cause the child to be returned
to the Board for the of restoring the child to the
parents or guardian.

(4) Any person who contravenes the provisions of this
section shall be liable, on summary conviction before a Resi-
dent Magistrate, to imprisonment for a term of six months, or to
a fine of five hundred thousand dollars or to both such imprison- 7120'1

Sch.
ment and such fine, and the Court by which the offender is con-
victed may order any child in respect of whom the offence

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8 CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF)

is committed to be returned to his parents or guardian or to the
Board.

Appeals by 7. Where any person has made representations to the Board
persons
des~rous of with a view to the adoption of a child, and the Board are
adopting of the opinion that the adoption of the child by such person
ch~ldren. would not be in the best interests of the child, the Board shall

% notify such person accordingly, and such person may appeal
fiom the decision of the Board to a Judge in Chambers.

Regulations. 8.-( 1) The Minister may make regulations-

(a) for regulating the conduct of negotiations entered into
by or on behalf of the Board with persons having the
care and possession of children who are desirous of
causing children to be adopted, and in p&ticular for
securing-

(i) that, where the parent or guardian of a child
proposes to place the child at the disposition of
the Board'with a view to the child being adop-
ted, he shall be h i ' s h e d with a memorandum in
the piescribed form explaining in ordinary
language the effect, in relation to his rights as a
parent or guardian, of the making of an adoption
order in respect of the child, &d calling attention
to the provisions of this Act and of any rules
made hereunder relating to the consent of a
parent or guardian to the making of such an
order; and

(ii) that, before so placing the child at the disposition
of the Board, the parent or guardian shall sign a
document in the prescribed form-veri'fying that
he has read or had read and understood the said
memorandum;

,. .

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CHILDREN (ADOPTION OF) 9

(b) for requiring that the case of every ~hild~proposed to
be delivered .by or on behalf of the Board into the
care and possession of an adopter shall be considered
by a committee (to be called a "case committee") com-
prised of not less than three members of the Board;

(c) for prescribing, in the case of every such child as' afore-
said, the inquiries which must be made and th6 reports
which must be obtained by the Board in relation to the
child and the adopter for the purpose of ensuring, so far
as may be, the suitability of the child and the adopter