The Best Interests of the Child in Intercountry Adoption
No. of pages: 88
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There is universal agreement that the best interests of the child should be a primary consideration in any decisions made about a child’s future. In the case of adoption, which represents one of the most far-reaching and definitive decisions that could be made about the future of any child – the selection of their parents – international law qualifies the best interests of the child as the paramount consideration. The implications of this obligation are all the greater in the context of the intercountry form of adoption, since this involves in addition the removal of a child to a new country and, usually, a new culture.
However, there is no universal agreement on who is ultimately responsible for determining what is in a child’s ‘best interests’, nor on what basis the decision should be made This study responds, in particular, to one key question: what is it that enables a policy, process, decision or practice to be qualified as either respectful or in violation of the best interests of the child in intercountry adoption?