Who can adopt

Find out if you are able to adopt a child and the qualities you need to have.

Are you ready to make a lifelong commitment to improving a child’s life through adoption?

If you are thinking about adoption, this is a question you are likely to have been considering long and hard. Our aim is to answer any questions you may have and help you take the first steps towards adopting a child in West Sussex.

"I didn’t worry about being gay – I was more worried about the fact that I was single!" Jo, single adopter

Our adoptive parents come from a wide variety of backgrounds.

You do not need to:

  • be under a particular age - as long as a you can meet the demands of caring for a child
  • own your own home - as long as the building is suitable for caring for a child, it does not matter if you own or rent it
  • be married - a single person, or a partner in an unmarried couple can adopt, as can people in a civil partnership or lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender relationship
  • have a clean criminal record - although offences against children immediately prohibit a person from adopting a child, other convictions do not necessarily rule an individual out from adopting as we would consider you on an individual basis.

However, you do need to be:

  • over the age of 21
  • clear of criminal convictions against children
  • resident in the United Kingdom and 'habitually resident' for at least one year before applying
  • in good physical and mental health and able to nurture a child through to adulthood.

We also have a specific requirement that if you are adopting a child under five years old you must have a non-smoking household.

The one thing that all our approved adopters have in common is the desire to give a child a secure, loving and permanent home.

You can find additional information on the adoption process in our information pack.

 
Last updated:
1 October 2018

Share this

Share this

Do you have any feedback about this page?

Help us improve this website

Let us know if this page was helpful so we can make improvements. Add a star rating and leave your feedback below to show how useful you found this page.

Rate this page:
Clear star rating...
  • (optional)

    West Sussex County Council will only use this email address to respond to any issues raised.