Article type: Original Research

PUBLISHED 1 January 1979

Volume 4 Issue 2

Adoption Legislation and Practice in Australia

Peter Fopp

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Peter Fopp


1 Adelaide, S.A.

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Under the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Australia, adoption is not a matter on which the Commonwealth has power to legislate. Accordingly, each State and Territory has its own legislation which is administered by its social welfare department.

The States have co-operated to draft “uniform” legislation, and during the period 1964-1970, new legislation was enacted in all States and Territories. A major aim of the uniform Acts was to curtail the practice of private, or independent, adoptions, where the child was placed in the care of a person with a view to his adoption, without any prior approval of the placement by a government department or an approved private adoption agency.

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