Our Health and Social Care team has been representing Care England to date in its application and will be preparing the case for the next month’s hearing on 20-21 March.
Against the wishes of the local authority and other welfare specialists, the child’s father was seeking custody, despite previously living apart from the mother and the child.
The Court had before it an application for a placement order, an order which permits a local authority to place a child for adoption. Our solicitors represented the child.
The Judge, Mr Justice Keehan decided that although the father expressed his love for the child, he failed to demonstrate an understanding of her emotional needs after such a heart breaking loss and instead ruled the youngster should be adopted by her maternal aunt and uncle in the US.
Jas Tamber, children law solicitor commented: "This was a particularly interesting case from a legal perspective due to the guidance flowing from recent decisions made by both the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal as to when they should exercise this most draconian of orders.
"Adoption has the effect of severing the legal link between a child and their natural family although in this case, it was a natural family member who had put themselves forward as a carer for the child.
"In all circumstances, if this family member had been resident in this country, the Court would have been unlikely to permit an application for a placement order to succeed. The family member in this case however resides in the USA and their immigration policy requires a child to be adopted by the family seeking their entry.
"This case demonstrates firmly that the Court will always have the interests of the child at the forefront of its mind when making decisions that will affect them for their entire life."
The judgement is available here.
This story was covered in Metro and the Times on 5 February 2014 and other media publications.
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