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Chapter

All books in this flagship series contain carefully selected substantial extracts from key cases, legislation, and academic debate, providing able students with a stand-alone resource. This chapter examines the place of adoption within the government’s child protection policy, the legal framework for adoption under the Adoption and Children Act 2002 (ACA 2002), the core principles underpinning the ACA 2002, the adoption process, and the ongoing reform agenda. It considers the application of the welfare principle to three contentious issues: (i) the importance of the birth family in an adoption dispute; (ii) trans-racial adoption; and (iii) step-parent adoptions and adoptions by a sole natural parent. The chapter also examines the issue of ‘open adoption’, focusing on adopted children’s right to information about their birth families and provision for post-adoption contact, and, finally, considers the main alternative to adoption: special guardianship.

Chapter

Julie Doughty

This chapter explains the law of adoption. When an adoption order is made by a court in England and Wales, the legal connection between a child and her birth family is completely and permanently ended and she is transferred in to a new family. Changes in society during the second half of the twentieth century created a new model of adoption, reflected in the legislative framework of the Adoption and Children Act 2002. However, there are ongoing complex questions about what the purpose of adoption should be. The idea that a court order can overcome biological and social relationships can seem artificial, imposing a fictitious narrative that might be difficult to sustain throughout a lifetime. The chapter also discusses special guardianship in the context of alternatives to adoption.

Chapter

This chapter examines the legal mechanisms by which children can be provided with long-term alternative secure family placements: the law on adoption and special guardianship. Topics discussed include: decision making in relation to adoption; adoption agencies’ role in assessing suitable adoptions; rules relating to parental consent in adoption cases; placement for adoption; applications to adopt; and special guardianship.

Chapter

This chapter examines the legal mechanisms by which children can be provided with long-term alternative secure family placements: the law on adoption and special guardianship. Topics discussed include: decision-making in relation to adoption; adoption agencies’ role in assessing suitable adoptions; rules relating to parental consent in adoption cases; placement for adoption; applications to adopt; post adoption contact; revocation of adoption; and special guardianship orders.

Chapter

N V Lowe and G Douglas

This chapter discusses the law on adoption. It covers the nature of adoption and background to the legislation; comparison of adoption with other legal relationships and orders; adoption and human rights; the changing pattern of adoption; responsibility for placing children for adoption; general principles when reaching decisions about adoption; adoption service under the Adoption and Children Act 2002; placement for adoption; the procedure for the making of adoption orders; contact considerations; registration of adoption and the adoption contact register; the effects of an adoption order; transfer of parentage; offences; and special guardianship.

Chapter

All books in this flagship series contain carefully selected substantial extracts from key cases, legislation, and academic debate, providing able students with a stand-alone resource. This chapter examines how the status of ‘legal parenthood’ is acquired under English law. It considers different concepts of parenthood and possible approaches to determining legal parenthood; the current legal framework for identifying a child’s legal parents where a child is conceived through natural procreation; and the problems and challenges raised by the use of assisted reproduction techniques and surrogacy.

Book

Nigel Lowe and Gillian Douglas

Bromley's Family Law provides an accurate, detailed account of family law. The text presents a broad treatment of the key issues relating to adult and child law. This new edition has been edited and updated to take account of the latest case law and legislation, while also reflecting new debates and emerging issues in the area. Particular attention is also paid to the increasingly significant international dimension of family law, with a new chapter on this area. This edition has been updated to provide up-to-date coverage on cohabitation, the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013 and Children and Families Act 2014. It also examines the proposals of the Family Justice Review. It considers in detail the Law Commission proposals for reform of the law on cohabitation, marital property agreements and needs, and non-matrimonial property on divorce.

Chapter

All books in this flagship series contain carefully selected substantial extracts from key cases, legislation, and academic debate, providing able students with a stand-alone resource. This chapter examines the law on state intervention into family life where a child is considered to be ‘in need’ or at risk of significant harm. It discusses the competing approaches to state intervention and the principles underpinning the Children Act (CA) 1989; the legal framework governing local authority support for children in need under Part III of the CA 1989 and the Social Services and Well-Being (Wales) Act 2014; the law and procedure regulating compulsory intervention into family life by means of care proceedings under Part IV; and the various emergency and interim measures available to protect a child thought to be at risk of immediate harm.

Chapter

Lara Walker

Child support in England and Wales is predominantly dealt with by the Child Support Act 1991. Many people believe that that parents should provide support for their children, that separated parents should continue to provide support, and that single parents are entitled to support for the child from the non-resident parent (usually, but not always, the father). However, the difficult factor is finding a theoretical underpinning for this duty which is believed, by many, to exist. This chapter begins by looking at some of the theories on child support and problems associated with these theories. It then looks at the government policy on child support in order to establish whether the policy is built on any of these theories and, if so, how closely it actually relates to the theory.

Chapter

This chapter examines the law on parenthood and parental responsibility. The law has had to address a number of questions.Who is a child’s mother when a woman gives birth to a child conceived as a result of egg donation by another woman? Is the child to have two mothers? Can a female-to-male transsexual person become a child’s father? Is a mother’s same-sex partner to be recognised as her child’s parent too? If so, in what sense? As this last question suggests, the law’s response is also complicated by the fact that the notion of ‘being a parent’ has several different facets.

Chapter

This chapter examines the law on legal parenthood (including establishing paternity) and the allocation, acquisition, nature and scope of parental responsibility. The law has had to address a number of questions in light of medical advances and social change. Who is a child’s mother when a woman gives birth to a child conceived as a result of egg donation by another woman? How is the law on surrogacy to be regulated? Can a female-to-male transsexual person become a child’s father via assisted conception (or indeed a mother if he gives birth)? Is a mother’s same-sex partner to be recognised as her child’s parent too? If so, in what sense? As this last question suggests, the law’s response is also complicated by the fact that the notion of ‘being a parent’ has several different facets.

Chapter

N V Lowe and G Douglas

This chapter explains the basic legal framework and provisions for local authorities to provide services for families. It covers the general role of the courts and local authorities; an overview of the development of local authority powers; the current law; general duty of local authority to children in need; specific duties and powers; accommodating children in need; and secure accommodation.

Chapter

17. Children and Local Authorities:  

Care and Supervision Proceedings

N V Lowe and G Douglas

The Children Act 1989 places considerable importance on local authorities working in partnership with families and the avoidance wherever possible of court proceedings. However, the Act also makes provision, in the form of care and supervision orders, for compulsory measures to be taken to safeguard and promote children's welfare. This chapter focuses on care and supervision orders. It covers the initiation of proceedings; the threshold criteria, which refers to conditions set out by Section 31(2) that must be satisfied before a care or supervision order may be made; the ‘welfare stage’, where the court must, pursuant to s 1(1), regard the welfare of the child as the paramount consideration; tackling delay in care proceedings; court orders; appeals; and discharge of care orders and discharge and variation of supervision orders.

Chapter

18. Children and Local Authorities:  

The Position of Children in Care

N V Lowe and G Douglas

This chapter discusses the position of children in local authority care. It begins by considering the issue of contact with children in care. It then looks more broadly at local authorities' duties to all children looked after by them, which includes those who are accommodated as well as those who are subject to care orders. Finally, it describes the means by which local authority decisions with respect to children being looked after by them can be challenged.

Chapter

16. Children and Local Authorities:  

Investigation of Child Abuse

N V Lowe and G Douglas

This chapter focuses on the local authorities' investigative powers and duties. It covers general duty of investigation under Section 47 of the Children Act 1989; co-operating with other agencies to discharge investigative duties; emergency protection orders; child assessment orders; and police protection.

Chapter

This chapter examines the relationship between children, parents, and the state, looking at how the law responds to children needing services, care, and protection. Topics discussed include: Part III of the Children Act 1989; the threshold for compulsory intervention in family life based on the concept of ‘significant harm’; protecting children in an emergency; interim care and supervision orders; the local authority’s care plan and respective roles of the local authority and court; and discharge of care orders.

Chapter

This chapter examines the relationship between children, parents, and the state, looking at how the law responds to children needing services, care, and protection. Topics discussed include: Part III of the Children Act 1989; the threshold for compulsory intervention in family life based on the concept of ‘significant harm’; protecting children in an emergency; care and supervision orders; the local authority’s care plan and respective roles of the local authority and court; and discharge of care orders.

Chapter

This chapter introduces some theoretical discussions concerning children’s rights and examines some ‘core’ legal provisions. It also looks at the case law related to which the issue of the legal protection of children’s interests has been explored. The focus is on the child’s right to make his or her own decisions as a possible limitation on parental responsibility.

Chapter

This chapter introduces some theoretical discussions concerning children’s rights and examines some ‘core’ legal provisions. It also looks at the case law related to which the issue of the legal protection of children’s interests has been explored. The focus is on the child’s right to make his or her own decisions as a possible limitation on parental responsibility, explored principally in the context of children’s medical treatment.

Chapter

N V Lowe and G Douglas

This chapter focuses on the particular phenomenon of cohabitation and considers the legal response to it. It begins by looking at the demographic and sociological picture concerning its growth and extent. It then considers how it has been defined and recognised in the law, in particular noting how far cohabitation is required to mimic marriage in order to be given such recognition. Cohabitation becomes most problematic for the law when the couple separate. The chapter examines how the law addresses this issue. It reviews proposed reforms and evaluates whether these should be adopted. It concludes by considering whether the example of cohabitation sheds light on other alternative forms of family organisation and what implications a shift from a focus on formal status to functional and practical family arrangements has for the body of law called ‘family’ law.