Monday, October 20, 2008

Adoption Law in Malaysia

Adoption is a legal way for an adult single person or a married couple to become the legal parents of a child. Paying money to adopt a child is a criminal offence.

Adoption can be done through the National Registration Department [Registration Of Adoption Act 1952 (ACT 253)] or through the Court [Adoption Act 1952 (ACT 257].

1. The child to be adopted

A child must be under the age of 18.

2. Who can adopt.

The person who is adopting must be

· at least 25 years old and is not less than 21 years older than the infant but this latter requirement may be waived by the court if adopter is a relative or a mother of the child.
· jointly by a husband and wife.
· a widow or widower or an unmarried or divorced person, with the consent of the Minister of Health and Welfare.
· a person who married the natural parent of the child..
· The child was under the care of the adoptor for at least three months prior to the adoption.
· The child is ordinarily resident in Malaysia

Note: a sole adopter who is a male cannot adopt a female child, unless special circumstances exist

3. Procedure for adoption –

A. Adoption Act 1952 (ACT 257).

i. An application may be made to the High Court or Sessions court in the prescribed form.

ii. With the consent from the natural parents for adoption.

The consent of the parents can be dispensed with by the court

· where the parent or guardian has not fulfilled his natural or legal duties towards the child by abandoning, neglecting or ill treating him/her or
· where the parent or guardian cannot be found or is incapable of giving any consent or where the consent is unreasonably withheld

iii. Pending adoption order the court will appoint a guardian ad litem to safeguard the interest of the child.

iv. Once the guardian ad litem is appointed, the court will fix a time for hearing of the application.

v. An adoption order will be, made by the court only if:

· it is satisfied that the consent of the parent or guardian of the child or the person liable to contribute to the support of the child has been obtained
· that the adoption is in the best interest of the child.

B. De facto adoption.

De facto means "existing in fact, whether legally recognized or not". Under De facto adoption the child is being raised, supported and educated by any person or husband & wife as their child.

Registration of de facto adoption can be made if

· the child is under the age of 18 and is not married;
· is in the custody of and is being brought up by the applicant;
· maintained and educated by the person for a period not less than 2 years before the application

i. Registration through the Registration Department - Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara. Registration Of Adoption Act 1952

Note: Although "The Registration of Adoptions Act 1952" provides for the registration of De facto adoptions. By virtue of the registration of the adoption, the adopted child does not acquire the status of a lawful child.

Complete Form JPN.AA02 and submit with the following documents:-

· Birth certificate of the child;
· Statutory Consent by the natural parents or mother if the child is illegitimate (If there is no consent for adoption from the natural parents or mother if the child is illegitimate then the case will be referred to the Social Welfare Department for approval)
· Marriage Certificate of the Adoptive Parents
· Birth certificate of the other children
· Other Adoption Certificate (if any)

A fee of RM30.00 for processing is required.

ii. Any person who has De facto adoption of the child can apply to the court to adopt the child - Section 8 Adoption Act 1952 (ACT 257)

In this instance the court can make an order
o notwithstanding that the child is female and the applicant is male
o without requiring the consent of any natural or guardian of the child being obtained
o the court is satisfied that in all circumstances it is just and equitable for the welfare of the child concerned.

If a child is adopted this way the child is legally adopted and acquires the status of a lawful child.

ps: artikel nih member aku yg mintak. dia ak amik anak angkat. aku post sebagai rujukan je. korang leh gak rujuk pd sesape yg pernah amik anak angkat.