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Comparative study on adoption procedures within EU Member States published

Tthe final report on a comparative study on adoption procedures in the member states of the European Union has been presented to the Council of Europe and European Commision.

The European Commission has received the final report on a comparative study on adoption procedures in the member states of the European Union, practical difficulties encountered in this area by European citizens in the context of a European area of justice in civil matters, and options available for resolving such difficulties and protecting children’s rights.

The report highlights the call for a harmonisation of adoption procedure in all member states in order to protect the child's best interests. The report notes that the law systems of the member states have already been harmonised to some extent as most of the countries have signed the Hague Convention. Various countries foresee different types of simple or plenary adoption, covering different procedures for adopters and adoptees in different conditions with legal consequences with regard to parentage, heritage etc.

The report shows the criteria applicable to the adopting parents are different from one country to another. Many called for a maximum age for adopting parents and a maximum age difference between adopter(s) and child.

The study includes tables comparing the various countries in terms of their legislation  and the surveys conducted.

The results of the study have been presented at the Council of Europe and European Commision joint conference "Challenges in Adoption Procedures in Europe: Ensuring the Best Interests of the Child" held on 30 November and 1 December 2009 at the Council of Europe Headquarters in Strasbourg. You will find a link to this presentation and those of the other speakers on the Council of Europe website.