List of declarations made with respect to treaty No. 058
Status as of: 24/5/2013
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Austria, dated 12 April 1984, registered at the Secretariat General on 13 April 1984 - Or. Fr.
I have the honour to notify you, in pursuance of Article 26 of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children, of the Austrian authorities to which requests under Article 14 of the said Convention may be addressed:
Burgenland : Amt der Burgenländischen Landesregierung - Landhaus - A-7000 EISENSTADT
Kärnten : Amt der Kärntner Landesregierung - Arnulfplatz 2 - A-9020 KLAGENFURT
Niederösterreich : Amt der Niederösterreichischen Landesregierung - Herrengasse 9-13 - A-1010 WIEN
Oberösterreich : Amt der Oberösterreichischen Landesregierung - Klosterstrasse 7 - A-4010 LINZ
Salzburg : Amt der Salzburger Landesregierung - Chiemseehof - A-5010 SALZBURG
Steiermark : Amt der Steiermärkischen Landesregierung - Hofgasse - A-8011 GRAZ
Tirol : Amt der Tiroler Landesregierung - Maria Theresienstrasse, 43 - A-6020 INNSBRUCK
Vorarlberg : Amt der Vorarlberger Landesregierung - Montfortstrasse, 12 - A-6900 BREGENZ
Wien : Magistrat der Stadt Wien - Magistratsabteilung 11/Jugendamt - Schottenring, 24 - A-1010 WIEN.
Period covered: 13/4/1984 -
Reservation contained in the instrument of ratification deposited on 8 September 2000 - Or. Engl./Cze.
In accordance with Article 25, paragraph 1, of the Convention, the Czech Republic reserves the right not to apply Article 7, paragraph 1. This is without prejudice to its duty to do everything in its power to ensure that the adoption is to the benefit of the adopted children.
[Note by the Secretariat: This declaration has been successively renewed for a period of five years with effect as from 9 December 2005 and 9 December 2010.]
Period covered: 9/12/2000 -
Declaration contained in a Note Verbale, handed over at the time of deposit of the instrument of ratification on 8 September 2000 - Or. Engl./Cze.
In accordance with Article 2 of the European Convention of the Adoption of Children, the Czech Republic declares that it has given effect in its law to the provisions of Part III of the Convention.
Period covered: 9/12/2000 -
Declaration contained in a Note Verbale, handed over at the time of deposit of the instrument of ratification on 8 September 2000 - Or. Engl./Cze., updated by a Note verbale from the Permanent Representation of the Czech Republic, dated and registered at the Secretariat General on 11 December 2009 - Or. Engl.
In accordance with Article 26, the Czech Republic declares that requests made pursuant to Article 14 of the Convention may be sent to :
Office for International Legal Protection of Children
(Urad pro mezinárodneprávni ochranu deti)
Šilingrovo námesti 3 / 4
602 00 Brno
Telephone: +420 542 215 522, +420 542 215 443
Fax: +420 542 212 836, +420 542 217 900
Period covered: 9/12/2000 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Denmark, dated 12 October 1978, handed to the Secretary General at the time of deposit of the instrument of ratification, on the same day - Or. Engl.
The Danish Government in conformity with the provisions of Article 23 declares that the Convention shall not apply to the Faroe Islands and Greenland.
[Note by the Secretariat : The application of the Convention has been extended to the Faroe Islands by a letter from the Permanent Representative of Denmark, dated 28 November 1983, registered at the Secretariat General on 29 November 1983 - Or. Engl.
Period covered: 13/1/1979 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representation of Denmark, dated 23 August 2001, registered at the Secretary General on 24 August 2001 - Or. Engl.
The Danish authorities, to which requests under Article 14 of the Convention may henceforth be addressed, are:
DK – 2100 København Ø
Period covered: 24/8/2001 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of the Federal Republic of Germany, dated 21 December 1982, registered at the Secretariat General on 22 December 1982 - Or. Engl.
Competent authorities (Article 14) :
Rheinland-Pfalz : Landesamt für Jugend und Soziales - Rheinland-Pfalz - Zentrale Adoptionsstelle - Rheinallee 97-101 - Postfach 2964 - D-6500 MAINZ
Hessen : Landesjugendamt - Zentrale Adoptionsstelle - Bismarckring 9 - D-6200 WIESBADEN
Nordrhein-Westfalen : Landschaftsverband Rheinland - Landesjugendamt - Kennedy-Ufer 2 - Postfach 21 07 20 - D-5000 KÖLN
Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe : Landesjugendamt - Warendorfer Strasse 25 - Postfach 61 25 - D-4400 MÜNSTER
Berlin : Senator für Schule, Jugend und Sport - Zentrale Adoptionsstelle - Alte-Jakob-Strasse 12-13 - D-1000 BERLIN
Saarland : Landesjugendamt des Saarlandes - Dudweiler Strasse 53 - D-6600 SAARBRÜCKEN 3
Baden-Württemberg : Landeswohlfahrtsverband - Württemberg-Hohenzollern - Landesjugendamt - Lindenspürstrasse 39 - Postfach 26 13 - D-7000 STUTTGART 1
Free Hanseatic City of Bremen, Hamburg, Niedersachsen, Schleswig-Holstein : Gemeinsame Zentrale Adoptionsstelle der Länder Bremen, Hamburg, Niedersachsen und Schleswig-Holstein - Kaiser-Wilhelm Strasse 100 - D-2000 HAMBURG 36
Bayern : Zentrale Adoptionsstelle des Bayerischen - Landesjugendamtes - Pilgersheimer Strasse 20 - D-MÜNCHEN 90.
Period covered: 22/12/1982 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Greece, dated 27 March 1986, registered at the Secretariat General on 1 April 1986 - Or. Fr.
Change of the Greek authority to which requests under Article 14 of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children may be addressed: Ministère de la Santé et de la Prévoyance - Division de la Protection Infantile - 17, rue Aristotelous - GR - 10433 ATHENES.
Period covered: 1/4/1986 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Department of External Affairs, dated 25 January 1968, handed to the Secretary General at the time of signature and deposit of the instrument of ratification on the same day - Or. Engl.
In accordance with the provisions of Article 2, Ireland gives effect to the provisions set out in Part III of the Convention.
Period covered: 26/4/1968 -
Declaration containted in a letter from the Department of Foreign Affairs of Ireland, dated 14 November 1983, registered at the Secretariat General on 22 November 1983 - Or. Engl.
Names and addresses of the authorities in Ireland to which requests under Article 14 of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children can be transmitted :
For the legislation in relation to adoption: Department of Health
All enquiries relating to adoptions and adoption law : Mr J. Hurley - Principal Officer - Child Care Services Section - Department of Health - Hawkins House - DUBLIN 2 - Telephone : (01) 71 47 11
For individual applications : Mr J.W. Cronin (Registrar) - Adoption Board - 65 Merrion Square - DUBLIN 2 - Telephone : (01) 76 20 04.
Period covered: 22/11/1983 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Italy, dated 20 March 1984 - Or. It./Fr.
The requests, under Article 14 of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children, may be addressed, in Italy, to the Courts competent, within their respective territorial jurisdiction, for minors.
Period covered: 20/3/1984 -
Declaration contained in a Note Verbale from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia, handed at the time of deposit of the instrument of ratification on 13 July 2000 - Or. Fr.
The Republic of Latvia declares that the authority to which requests under Article 14 may be addressed is:
Ministry of Welfare
28 Skolas Str.
Riga, LV-1331, Latvia
Phone : +371 67021600 ; Fax : +371 67276445
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
Website : www.lm.gov.lv
[Note by the Secretariat: This declaration has been updated:
- by a letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia, dated 3 August 2004, registered at the Secretariat General on 24 August 2004 - Or. Engl.
- by a letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia, dated 12 August 2009, registered at the Secretariat General on 27 August 2009 – Or. Engl.]
Period covered: 14/10/2000 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Liechtenstein, dated 2 December 1981, registered at the Secretariat General on 4 December 1981 - Or. Fr.
In pursuance of Article 26 of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children, which Liechtenstein has ratified, I have the honour of informing you of the address of the authority to which requests under Article 14 may be addressed: Fürstlich-Liechtensteinisches Landgericht - FL - 9490 VADUZ.
Period covered: 26/12/1981 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Malta, dated 4 January 1984, registered at the Secretariat General on 12 January 1984 - Or. Engl.
In the case of Malta, the proper authority to which requests may be addressed as envisaged in Article 26 of the Convention is: The Registrar of the Superior Courts - The Courts of Law - Republic Street - VALLETTA.
Period covered: 12/1/1984 -
Declaration contained in the instrument of ratification, deposited on 13 January 1972 - Or. Engl.
Competent authorities (Article 14) are :
Fylkesmannen i Oslo og Akershus H. Heyerdahlsgt. 1, N-OSLO DEP.
Fylkesmannen i Østfold, N-1500 MOSS
Fylkesmannen i Hedmark, N-2300 HAMAR
Fylkesmannen i Oppland, N-2600 LILLEHAMMER
Fylkesmannen i Buskerud, N-3000 DRAMMEN
Fylkesmannen i Vestfold, N-3100 TØNSBERG
Fylkesmannen i Telemark, N-3700 SKIEN
Fylkesmannen i Aust-Agder, N-4800 ARENDAL
Fylkesmannen i Vest-Agder, N-4600 KRISTIANSAND
Fylkesmannen i Rogaland, N-4000 STAVANGER
Fylkesmannen i Bergen og Hordaland, N-5000 BERGEN
Fylkesmannen i Sogn og Fjordane, N-5840 HERMANSVERK
Fylkesmannen i Møre og Romsdal, N-6400 MOLDE
Fylkesmannen i Sør-Trøndelag, N-7000 TRONDHEIM
Fylkesmannen i Nord-Trøndelag, N-7700 STEINKJER
Fylkesmannen i Nordland, N-8000 BODØ
Fylkesmannen i Troms, N-9000 TROMSØ
Fylkesmannen i Finnmark, N-9800 VADSØ
Requests may also be sent to : the Royal Ministry of Justice and Police Akersgaten 42, N-OSLO DEP.
The Ministry will forward the request to the County Governor (Fylkesmann) concerned.
Period covered: 14/4/1972 -
Declaration annexed to the instrument of ratification, deposited on 13 January 1972 - Engl. only
Implementation of the European Convention on Adoption of Children in Norwegian law:
In accordance with paragraph 1 of the Act of 2 April 1917 No 1 relating to adoption (hereinafter called the Adoption Act), the authority to grant an adoption is vested in the King. By a royal decree, dated 13 July 1933, this authority was delegated to the chief administrative officer of a country, the County Governor (fylkesmannen).
In paragraph 6 of the Adoption Act it is provided that a person under the age of 20 years may not, as a general rule, be adopted without the consent of his (her) parents. If one of the parents is dead or missing, or is insane or mentally deficient, or has no share in the parental rights in respect of the child, the consent of the other parent is sufficient. If both parents are subject to any of the disabilities mentioned, the consent of the child's legal guardian is required. However, a parent who is deprived of his or her parental rights in respect of the child, shall nevertheless, as far as possible, be given an opportunity to express his (her) opinion before the decision is taken.
The Adoption Act has no provision directly corresponding to Article 5 paragraph 4. In practice, however, the rule is that a mother's consent to the adoption of her child is only accepted when it has been given at such a time after the birth that there is reason to believe that she has had sufficient time to consider carefully the question of adoption. As a rule, therefore, more than 6 weeks are allowed to elapse before her consent is obtained. With a view to ratification of the Convention, the County Governors (fylkesmennene) have been instructed not to grant an adoption unless the consent of the mother has been given more than 6 weeks after the child's birth.
This Article corresponds to paragraphs 3 and 4 of the Adoption Act. In accordance with these provisions, a married person may only adopt a child jointly with the spouse, unless the latter is insane or mentally retarded or is missing. A spouse may, however, with the consent of the other spouse adopt the latter's child or adopted child. Two persons who are not married to each other cannot adopt a child jointly. Neither is it possible to re-adopt an adopted child, provided the adopter is alive (and the adoption has not been annulled nor revocated) for anyone else than the spouse of the adopter.
In accordance with paragraph 1 of the Adoption Act an adopter must have attained the age of 25 years. This age-requirement cannot be waived.
According to paragraph 8 of the Adoption Act an adoption must not be granted unless there is reason to believe that the adoption will be to the child's benefit, and it is either desired that the child be brought up by the adopter, or the child has been brought up by the adopter or his (her) spouse, or there are other special reasons in favour of the adoption. Only exceptionally will an adoption be granted if the difference in age between the adopter and the child is less than the normal difference in age between parents and their children. This may, however, be the case when a stepchild is being adopted, but this type of adoption is also subject to careful examinations.
If an adoption is arranged through a public placement bureau, the enquiries mentioned in paragraph 2 of this Article are made by the bureau. Several of the public placement bureaux are headed by the child welfare secretary attached to the office of the County Governor (see below).
No adoption is granted before the local child welfare committee, established in accordance with the Child Welfare Act of 17 July 1953 No 14, has given its opinion on the petition.
In the office of the County Governor (fylkesmannen) petitions for adoption are handled by a person with special knowledge of child welfare matters, preferably the child welfare secretary, provided he did not take part in the work of the public placement bureau. The person handling a petition may, if necessary, make a more detailed enquiry into the matters mentioned in Article 9.
According to paragraph 5 of the Adoption Act a child who has reached the age of 12 years may not, as a rule, be adopted unless he has given his consent to the adoption. If he has reached the age of 16 years, his consent to the adoption must always be obtained.
In a Circular Letter to the County Governors (fylkesmennene), their attention has been drawn to, inter alia, Article 9 of the Convention and the importance of comprehensive social enquiries before an adoption is granted has been stressed.
The provisions of paragraphs 1 - 3 are implemented by paragraphs 10, 11 and 12 of the Adoption Act, cf. paragraph 3 of the Act of 29 May 1964 No. 1 on Personal Names. There are no provisions in Norwegian law corresponding to paragraph 2 section 2 and paragraph 4 of Article 10.
Paragraph 5 of this Article is implemented by paragraph 14 of the Adoption Act, giving an adopted child or his off-spring the same right of inheritance as a natural child of the adopter. An adopted child or his off-spring is inherited in a corresponding manner.
A limited exception to this rule is, however, found in paragraph 17 of the Adoption Act whereby the so-called Asetesrett (primogenitur), i.e. the right to acquire the family farm at a favourable rate, devolves upon the adopted child and its off-spring subsequently to the adopter's natural children and their off-spring. In this connection reference is made to paragraph 44 of the Explanatory Report on the Convention and what is said there about the possibility of making a certain differentiation between a child born in lawful wedlock and an adopted child as regards inheritance of land.
The Act of 8 December 1950 No 3 on Norwegian citizenship is practiced in accordance with Article 11 of the Convention with regard to adopted children.
Paragraphs 1 and 2 of this Article are in accordance with the law now in force and its practice. As regards paragraph 3, Norway made a reservation at the time of signature due to the provision in paragraph 17 subsection 4 of the Adoption Act, cf. paragraph 1 subsectioin 2 of the Act. This reservation will be renewed when the Convention is ratified.
Provisions dealing with revocation (termination) of an adoption are found in paragraphs 21-25 of the Adoption Act.
An adoption relationship may be terminated by the Ministry of Justice on petition from the adopter and the adopted child, provided the adopted child is not under age, cf. paragraph 21 subsection 1 of the Adoption Act. If the adopter is dead the adoption may, according to subsection 2 of paragraph 21, be terminated by the same authority, if this is found to be in the child's interest, and either the adopted child (or its guardian), or its natural parents or one of them makes a petition to this effect.
With the exceptions mentioned above an adoption can only be terminated by judgment and only if one of the following grounds is present:
1. If the adopter is guilty of gross offence against the adopted child, or of gross negligence of his duties to it, or if termination is found necessary considering the child's own interests (paragraph 22).
2. If the adopted child is guilty of gross offence against the adopter or his relatives, or if the adopted child's bad conduct makes the continuation of the adoption relationship manifestly unreasonable (paragraph 23 subsection 2).
3. If it is found that the adopted child is mentally deficient or insane or suffering from some other serious physical or mental defect or some malignant and protracted disease considered to have been contracted before the adoption and of which the adopter then had no knowledge. An action to terminate the adoption must, however, be brought within 5 years of the adoption (paragraph 23 subsection 1).
Reference is made to the information given below in connection with Article 26.
According to paragraph 9 of the Adoption Act information must be acquired before an adoption is granted as to whether any reward has been or will be paid by any of the parties, and if this is the case how much. If a reward has been or will be paid to the adopter the granting of the adoption may be made conditional upon a guarantee that the reward shall wholly or in part be used for the benefit of the adopted child. It is hence possible to prevent improper financial advantage arising from a child being given up for adoption.
In this connection it should also be mentioned that a provision in paragraph 26 of the Child Welfare Act of 17 July 1953 No 14 makes it unlawful for private persons to engage in child placement activities irrespective of whether the children are placed for adoption. A contravention of this provision is punishable. Organisations are likewise prohibited from engaging in such activities unless they have been granted permission by the Ministry of Social Affairs, which in such event will supervise the said activities.
There is no provision in the Adoption Act providing that a child must have been in the care of the adopter for a certain period before the adoption is granted.
When an adoption is prepared by a public placement bureau the child, as a general rule, is placed in a suitable institution under observation for at least two months. This is, however, not the case when the child prior to the adoption has been placed in the home of the adopter as a foster child. The time a child will be in the care of the adopter after the period of observation mentioned above before the adoption is granted varies rather considerably.
According to paragraph 26 subsection (b) of the Child Welfare Act of 17 July 1953 No 14 it is unlawful for private persons to engage in child placement activities in Norway, and organisations may only engage in such activities if they have been granted permission by the Ministry of Social Affairs. At present there are 8 public placement bureaux in Norway, and work is in progress for the establishment of at least one bureau in each county (fylke). Plans for the establishment and the activities of a bureau must be approved by the Ministry of Social Affairs. It has been made a condition for such approval that the activities are to be supervised by an expert council.
Instruction in the social and legal aspects of adoption is given in all schools that train social workers. In the last plan of instruction, which was recently sent the Ministry of Church and Education for approval, and which will be applicable to all Schools on Social Affairs, the part of the curriculum dealing with questions of adoption has been expanded.
There is no provision in the Adoption Act prohibiting an adoption to be completed without disclosing to the child's family the identity of the adopter (and vice versa). Such anonymous adoptions are the rule in Norway.
Petitions for adoption are in Norway administrative matters (cf. what has been said in connection with Article 4 above). The public is not given access to such matters, and the civil servants who handle adoption-matters are under a duty of secrecy.
The rule of paragraph 3 has been practiced in Norway since 1960.
The requirements of paragraph 4 have been observed in Norway for a long period.
Period covered: 14/4/1972 -
Reservation contained in a Note Verbale, handed to the Secretary General at the time of the deposit of the instrument of ratification, on 21 June 1996 - Or. Fr.
According to Article 25, paragraph 1, of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children, the Republic of Poland declares that instead of the requirement of a minimum age for the adopter, provided in Article 7, paragraph 1, of the Convention, it will apply the provision, provided in Polish legislation, that a person with full legal capacity, even if not yet 21 years, may adopt in theory a child.
[Note by the Secretariat : This reservation has been renewed for successive periods of five year with effect on 22 September 2001, 22 September 2006 and 22 September 2011.]
Period covered: 22/9/1996 -
Declaration contained in a Note Verbale, handed to the Secretary General at the time of the deposit of the instrument of ratification, on 21 June 1996 - Or. Fr.
The Authority to whom transmit the enquiries according to Article 14 of the Convention is: Ministry of Justice - Aleje Ujazdowskie 11 - 00-950 Varsaw.
Period covered: 22/9/1996 -
Declaration contained in the instrument of ratification deposited on 23 April 1990 - Or. Port.
In application of the right provided for in Article 24, Portugal considers that the provisions of paragraph 1 and 2 of Article 10 shall only apply to "adopção plena" (full adoption).
Period covered: 24/7/1990 -
Reservation contained in the instrument of accession, deposited on 18 May 1993 - Or. Fr.
In accordance with the terms of Article 25, para. 1, of the Convention, enabling Contracting Parties to make not more than two reservations in respect of the provisions of Part II of the Convention, Romania hereby declares that it will not apply the provisions of Article 7, under which the adopter's age may be neither less than 21 nor more than 35 years, as the minimum age under Romanian legislation is 18 years and no upper limit applies.
[Note by the Secretariat : This reservation has been renewed for periods of five years with effect, successively, to 19 August 1998, 19 August 2003 and 19 August 2008.]
Period covered: 19/8/1993 -
Declaration contained in the instrument of accession, deposited on 18 May 1993 - Or. Fr.
Pursuant to the terms of Article 2 of the Convention, empowering Contracting Parties to decide which provisions of Part III will be given consideration, Romania declares that it will give effect to Articles 18, 19 and 20.
Period covered: 19/8/1993 -
Declaration contained in a Note Verbale from the Consulate General of Romania dated 16 September 1993 registered at the Secretariat General on 17 September 1993 - Or. Fr.
Romania acceded to the European Convention on the Adoption of Children by virtue of Act No. 15 of 25 March 1993 (published in the Official Gazette, No. 67, of 31 March 1993).
In accordance with Section 2 of Act No. 15/1993, accession was made subject to a reservation in respect of the application of Article 7 of the Convention concerning age limits for the adopter, the minimum age being 18 years in Romania, with no maximum limit.
Under Article 11 of the Constitution, the Romanian State undertakes to fulfil scrupulously and in good faith the obligations imposed upon it by the treaties to which it is party, treaties which become part of the domestic law following ratification by the Parliament.
Pursuant to Section 3, second paragraph, of Act No. 15/1993, and in accordance with the provisions of Article 1 of the European Convention, the Secretariat of the Council of Europe is hereby notified, in point III of this Declaration, of the state of Romanian legislation concerning the adoption of children, with specific reference to the provisions of the European Convention.
Romanian legislation contains no provisions contrary to those of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children. The regulations on this subject are consistent with the provisions of principle contained in the Constitution, namely safeguards and respect for fundamental rights concerning, respectively, personal, family and private life (Article 26) and the family (Article 44). Adoption is governed by the Family Code and by Act No. 11/1990 on authorisation for adoption.
The position of Romanian legislation in relation to the provisions of the Convention is as follows:
Article 67 of the Family Code lays down the rule that "only minor children may be adopted". The form of words used subsequently in the same article ("an adult person may also be adopted if, during his minority, he had been brought up by the person who wishes to adopt him") is not at variance with the provisions of the European Convention, since it exceeds their scope, as defined in Part I.
Act No. 11/1990 on authorisation for adoption attributes competence in respect of adoption to the judicial authorities (Section 1).
1. The conditions laid down by Romanian law in respect of authorisation for adoption (Section 4 of Act No. 11/1990) include "the certified declaration of consent to adoption by the parent (mother or father) or the legitimate parents, the statutory guardian or guardians or, where appropriate, the opinion of the guardianship authority".
With regard to consent expressed by other institutions, mention should also be made of the provisions of Section 7 of Act No. 11/1990.
Section 7: "In cases where adoption concerns a child for whom placement in the care of a guardian is necessary but has not yet been carried out, the judicial authority shall give its authorisation for adoption on the basis of the opinion of the guardianship authority empowered to conduct the social inquiry.
In the situations covered by Article 109 of the Family Code, when the child is in a social welfare institution or a medical centre, the application for deprivation of parental authority may be drafted by the governing board of the institution or the medical centre.
If the child is in a social welfare institution or, as the case may be, in a medical centre, the parents may officially declare in writing, six months after the date of the declaration, their consent to the adoption of the child by the person appointed by the Romanian Committee on Adoptions, no further form of consent to the adoption being necessary".
Article 69, second paragraph, of the Family Code requires the consent of the spouse, if the adopter is married. This requirement is waived in cases where the spouse is declared legally incapable, if he/she is deprived of parental authority or if he/she is in any other situation preventing him/her from manifesting his/her will.
2. In the absence of an express provision in the legislation concerning adoption, a person harmed by action on the part of the competent authority, which runs counter to the provisions of Article 5 of the Convention, may adduce the provisions of Article 21 of the Constitution, as well as Section 1 of Act No. 29/1990 concerning administrative disputes.
Article 21 of the Constitution:
1. "Every person is entitled to defend his rights, freedoms and legitimate interests in legal proceedings.
2. No law may limit the exercise of this right."
Article 1 of Act No. 29/1990:
"Any natural or legal person who considers that his legally recognised rights have been harmed by an administrative act or by the unjustified refusal of an administrative authority to respond favourably to an application concerning a right recognised by law, may appeal to the competent judicial authority to have the act set aside, for recognition of the right in question and for compensation for the damage caused to him."
3. With regard to Article 5 para. 3 of the Convention, see the comments set out below; the relevant situations are specified in the legislative texts referred to.
4. Romanian legislation does not expressly provide for cases where, for purposes of adoption, the consent of the mother should be given only after the birth of the child. However, from an examination of the texts governing this matter, it appears that such consent could only be given after the birth of the child.
Arguments: Consent to adoption is given in the form of an officially recorded declaration (Section 4, Act No. 11/1990). For this purpose, the person making the declaration must go to a notary's office. In pursuance of Decree No. 377/1960 on the organisation and functioning of notaries offices, the notary confirms the authenticity of the declarations made before him, certifying that the person in question has full possession of his mental faculties and is freely expressing his will. In practice, a parent who consents to the adoption of his/her child, presents the child's birth certificate to the notary, and this document certifies the identity of the child in the officially recorded declaration.
Under the terms of Article 69 of the Family Code, "the adoption of a child by several persons is not authorised, except in cases where it is carried out by the two spouses simultaneously or successively". Romanian legislation envisages the possibility of adoption by one spouse of the (legitimate or adopted) child of the other spouse (Articles 69 and 78 of the Family Code), and does not prohibit the adoption of a child who had previously been adopted, following the death of the adoptive parents or in the event of the annulment or revocation of the adoption.
Under the terms of the reservation made by Romania, the statutory provisions concerning the age of the adopter are governed by the Family Code. Article 68 provides that "adoption may be authorised only in the case of persons of full age who fulfil the conditions required for guardianship and who are at least 18 years older than those whom they wish to adopt". For well-founded reasons, the judicial authority may authorise adoption even if the difference in age is less than the one prescribed above. The provisions of paragraph 2b of Article 7 of the Convention are drafted along the same lines.
Romanian legislation provides for no upper age limit for adopters.
Articles 8 and 9
In accordance with Section 5 of Act No. 11/1991, adoption is authorised by the judicial authority, subject to observation of the essential conditions stipulated by the Family Code, and the authority has the possibility of taking any evidence authorised by law. A social inquiry is compulsory in such cases.
Article 66 of the Family Code stipulates that adoption can only be implemented in the interest of the adopted person. Under Article 72 of the same code, adoption is made conditional on the finding that the adopter can ensure the normal physical and moral development of the adopted person, and it is specified that adoption cannot have as its aim the exploitation of the adopted person or other unlawful interests. At the same time, in the case of international adoption, under the conditions laid down by Section 9 of Act No. 11/1990, the court shall come to a decision on a request for authorisation with a view to adoption, so that the minor child may enjoy the benefit, in a foreign country, of similar guarantees and standards to those applicable in a case of national adoption.
Section 6 of Act No. 11/1990 expressly refers to situations where the adopter or the adopted person is an alien: "with regard to the essential conditions governing adoption, everyone is subject to his national law, if the foreign law does not infringe Romanian public order under private international law.
In addition, Section 4b of Act No. 11/1990 stipulates that adopters are required inter alia to submit the following documents: a police record certificate, a medical certificate concerning their state of health, a document issued by the competent foreign authorities certifying that they are qualified to adopt a child, in accordance with the legislation of the country in question, and the social inquiry carried out by the competent foreign authorities in the country of residence of the adopters, expressing their opinion on the adoption.
In order to obviate any situation which could convey an impression inconsistent with the actual facts, the Romanian Act authorises intervention in the adoption proceedings, under the conditions laid down by law, by anyone who shows proof of a legitimate interest (Section 8 of Act No. 11/1990).
At the same time, in the regulations relating to the consent required with a view to adoption, Romanian law - under Article 70 of the Family Code - also includes the consent of the minor child, if the latter is over 10 years old.
The rights conferred on the adopter by the judicial authorities:
Under Romanian legislation (Family Code, Articles 75 to 79), adoption may take the following forms:
a. adoption with limited effect;
b. full adoption.
Together with the application for adoption, the adopter must present a certified declaration mentioning the form of adoption requested (Section 4b).
a. The legal effects of limited adoption are specified in Articles 75 to 78 of the Family Code, as follows:
- the adopted person shall have the same rights and obligations with regard to the adopter as a legitimate child may have with regard to his parents;
- the descendants of the adopted person shall have the same rights and obligations with regard to the adopter as the descendants of a legitimate child may have with regard to the latter's ascendants;
- both the adopted person and his descendants shall maintain all the rights and obligations derived from natural descent and family ties;
- parental rights and obligations shall be transferred to the adopter. If the adopter is the spouse of the legitimate father or mother of the adopted person, he/she shall acquire parental rights and obligations on the same basis (adopter and legitimate father or mother married to the adopter);
- adoption shall not create family ties between the adopted person and the members of the adopter's family;
- the adopted person shall acquire the name of the adopter; if the adoptive spouses do not bear the same name, they are obliged to mention in the adoption application the family name to be borne by the adopted person. The court may authorise the adopted person to add his family name to the name acquired by adoption.
b. The legal effects of full adoption (or, under the terms of the Family Code, adoption with all the effects of natural descent) are governed by Article 79 of the Family Code:
- the adopted person shall be bound by family ties to the adopter and to the members of the latter's family, as if he were the legitimate child of the adopter;
- the rights and obligations derived from affiliation between the adopted person and his legitimate parents and the members of the latter's families shall cease to be applicable. However, the prohibition of marriage, up to and including the fourth degree of kinship, shall be applied as between the adopted person and all the members of his legitimate family;
- in cases of full adoption, the effects with regard to family name are the same.
The provisions of Romanian law dealing with the legal status of the child (rights and obligations) make no distinction between legitimate children, illegitimate children and adopted children.
1. Under Section 9, last paragraph, of Act No. 11/1990, "the citizenship of the adopted person is subject to the law on Romanian citizenship". Among the methods for obtaining citizenship (Section 4b), the Act on Romanian citizenship (No. 21/1991) includes adoption, as regulated by Section 6 of the same Act:
Section 6: "Romanian citizenship may be acquired by a child who is a foreign citizen or has no citizenship by means of adoption, if the adopters are Romanian citizens and if the adopted person is not aged over 18. In cases where only one of the adopters is a Romanian citizen, the citizenship of the adopted minor person shall be decided by mutual agreement between the adopters. If the adopters fail to reach an agreement, the judicial authority empowered to authorise adoption shall decide on the citizenship of the minor, taking into account the latter's interests. If the child is aged over 14, his consent is required."
2. A minor child of Romanian citizenship who is adopted by a foreign citizen loses Romanian citizenship if the adopter or adopters expressly so request and if the law of the adopter's country stipulates that the adopted person shall acquire the citizenship of the adopter. If the adoption is declared void or annulled, a child aged under 18 is considered never to have lost Romanian citizenship.
No regulation under current Romanian legislation limits the number of children who may be adopted by the same adopter, and the fact of not having children is not a required condition for fitness to adopt.
With regard to paragraph 3 of this article, the law is applicable to all children - as was mentioned above - without discrimination on the basis of their legal status (legitimate children, illegitimate children or adopted children). All children enjoy the same rights.
The Family Code stipulates the possibility of revoking adoption, but this measure can only be taken by the judicial authority, at the request of one of the parents (mother or father), in the absence of his/her consent to the adoption, or at the request of the adopted person, the legitimate parents, social welfare institutions, the guardianship authority or the administrative organs, if this is in the interest of the minor child. If the adopted person is aged over 14, his consent is also required.
The Romanian Committee on Adoptions was set up by Romanian Government Order No. 63 of 22 January 1991. This governmental body is intended to contribute to the protection of adopted minor children and to international co-operation in the field of adoption (Article 1). Moreover, in accordance with Article 5, the Romanian Adoptions Committee is empowered to request and to transmit to ministries, to specialised central organs of the State administration and to other public bodies, the documentation, data and information needed for the fulfilment of its functions.
Section 11 of Act No. 11/1991 imposes a prison sentence ranging from 1 to 5 years on any parent, guardian or statutory guardian who claims or receives financial or material benefits for the adoption of a child, whether for his own benefit or for the benefit of others. The same sentence is imposed on anyone who, with a view to obtaining undeserved material advantages, facilitates or acts as an intermediary for the adoption of a child.
By virtue of the options provided for in Article 2 of the European Convention, Romania has declared, in accordance with Section 2, second paragraph, of Act No. 15 of 25 March 1993 concerning Romania's accession to this Convention, that it gives effect to Articles 18, 19 and 20 of Part III of the Convention.
Articles 18 and 19
With a view to the implementation of the provisions contained in these articles, the National Committee for Child Welfare, a governmental body, was set up by Romanian Government Order No. 103 of 18 March 1993. Its functions include the following:
- preparation of draft government strategies and programmes aimed at improving living conditions for children placed in child welfare institutions, as well as other categories of children;
- preparation of proposals for standard-setting instruments, with a view to improving the legal rules concerning the protection of children;
- co-operation with the Ministry of Education with a view to preparing vocational training and further training programmes for staff in the field of child welfare.
Specific functions are assigned to the Romanian Adoptions Committee, in accordance with Section 3 of Government Order No. 63/1991.
The situations referred to in paragraphs 1, 3 and 4 are feasible; requests by adopters for these purposes must be assessed by the authority which authorises adoption, and which in all cases takes a decision solely in the interests of the adopted child.
By virtue of the provisions of Article 79 of the Family Code, in the case of full adoption and when the adopted person's family ties with all the members of his legitimate family cease to be effective, a new birth certificate will be drawn up for the adopted person, in which the adopters will be registered as his legitimate parents. The previous birth certificate will be preserved and will carry a note to the effect that a new birth certificate has been drawn up.
The provisions of Section 9, third paragraph, of Act No. 11/1991 are drafted along the same lines. The same particulars are contained in Section 20 of Decree No. 278/1960 concerning civil status records, which also indicates that the place of residence of the adopters will be entered as the place of birth.
In accordance with Article 26 of the Constitution, the public authorities respect and protect personal, family and private life. Thus, the registry authorities called upon to respond to an application for the adoption of a person are required to analyse the interest of the person who has submitted the application, while respecting the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution. Consequently, the provisions of the decree governing civil status records are applied from the standpoint of Article 150 of the Constitution which states that laws and all other standard-setting instruments shall remain in force in so far as they do not infringe the Constitution.
The case provided for in paragraph 2 is covered by the provisions of Section 5 of Act No. 11/1990.
As the court hearings are not public, the competent authority deals with the application for the authorisation of adoption in the context of a sitting in judge's chambers rather than in a court room open to the public.
In addition, Article 121 of the Code of Civil Procedure permits the judicial authority to deliberate in secret.
Period covered: 17/9/1993 -
Renewal of declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Romania, dated 18 August 1998, registered at the Secretariat General on 2 September 1998 - Or. Engl.
With reference to the provisions of Article 7 of the European Convention on the Adoption of Children, concerning the age of the adopter, I declare, on behalf of my Government, that Romania renews for a period of five years, as from 19 August 1998, its reservation made on 18 May 1993 at the time of deposit of the instrument of accession to the above-mentioned Convention.
In accordance with the new Romanian legislation in this matter, that is to say the Emergency Order No. 25/1998, approved by the Act No. 87/1998, the minimum age of the adopter remains 18 years, with no maximum limit.
Period covered: 19/8/1998 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Romania, dated 9 March 2009, registered at the Secretariat General on 11 March 2009 – Or. Engl., updated by a letter from the Permanent Representative of Romania, dated 21 January 2010, registered at the Secretariat General on 22 January 2010 - Or. Engl.
Pursuant to Article 26 of the Convention, Romania declares that the name and address of the authority in Romania to which requests under Article 14 may be addressed have been updated as follows :
a) English language:
Ministry of Justice
Department of International Law and Treaties
Strada Apollodor 17
Sector 5 Bucuresti, Cod 050741
b) French language:
Ministère de la Justice
Direction du Droit International et des Traités
Strada Apollodor 17
Sector 5 Bucuresti, Cod 050741
c) Romanian language:
Directia Drept international si Tratate
Strada Apollodor 17
Sector 5 Bucuresti, Cod 050741
Period covered: 11/3/2009 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Sweden, dated 8 December 1983, registered at the Secretary General on 9 December 1983 - Or. Engl.
I have the honour to communicate to you the denomination and address of the authority which is referred to in Article 14 of the convention. It is : Socialstyrelsen (National Board of Health and Social Welfare/ Commission Nationale de la Santé et de l'Assistance Sociale) S-10630 STOCKHOLM.
Period covered: 9/12/1983 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Switzerland, dated 28 December 1972, handed to the Secretary General at the time of deposit of the instrument of ratification, on 29 December 1972 - Or. Fr.
I declare, on behalf of my Government, that this Convention shall enter into force for Switzerland on 1st April 1973.
Period covered: 1/4/1973 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of Switzerland, dated 19 December 1983, registered at the Secretariat General on 20 December 1983 - Or. Fr.
I have the honour to inform you that, for Switzerland, requests for information under Article 14 of the Convention should be addressed to the : Office fédéral de la Justice, CH - 3003 BERNE.
Period covered: 20/12/1983 -
Declaration contained in the instrument of ratification deposited on 15 January 2003 - Or. angl.
In accordance with Article 26, the competent authority in the Republic of Macedonia to which requests under Article 14 may be addressed is the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy.
Period covered: 16/4/2003 -
Declaration from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" transmitted by a letter from the Permanent Representative of "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" dated 15 December 2008, registered at the Secretariat General on 16 December 2008 – Or. Engl.
In accordance with Article 25 of the Convention, the Government of the Republic of Macedonia would like to renew for a successive period of five years with effect as from 16 April 2008, its reservation made on 16 April 2003, contained in the instrument of ratification of the Convention, as well as modify this reservation as follows:
In accordance with Article 25, paragraph 1, of the Convention, the Republic of Macedonia declares that it will not apply the provision of Article 7 (1) which refers to the adopters' age, as the minimum age under the legislation of the Republic of Macedonia is 18 and the upper limit is 45.
[Note by the Secretariat: This reservation was renewed for a period of five years by a Note verbale from the Permanent Representation of "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia", dated 20 February 2013, registered at the Secretariat General on 22 February 2013 – Or. Engl. (Period covered : from 16 April 2013 to 16 April 2018.)]
Period covered: 16/4/2008 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom, dated 1st September 1977, registered at the Secretariat General on 5 September 1977 - Or. Engl. - and partially denunced by a letter from the Chargée d'affaires a.i. of the United Kingdom, dated 20 June 2005, registered at the Secretariat General on 21 June 2005, completed by a letter dated 29 July 2005, registered at the Secretariat General on 18 August 2005.
In accordance with the provisions of Article 23, paragraph 2, of the said Convention, I now declare, on behalf of the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, that the Convention shall apply to the following territories: [Isle of Man] (*), Bailiwick of Jersey, Bailiwick of Guernsey (Excluding Sark).
[Note by the Secretariat: The Government of the United Kingdom denounced the Convention in respect of the metropolitan territory and the Isle of Man. See the Declaration registered by the Secretariat General on 21 June 2005.]
Period covered: 5/9/1977 -
Declaration contained in a letter from the Chargée d'affaires a.i. of the United Kingdom, dated 20 June 2005, registered at the Secretariat General on 21 June 2005, completed by a letter dated 29 July 2005, registered at the Secretariat General on 18 August 2005 - Or. Engl.
In accordance with the provisions of Article 27, paragraph 2, of the Convention, the Government of the United Kingdom denounces the Convention in respect of the metropolitan territory of the United Kingdom and the following territory for whose international relations the United Kingdom is responsible : the Isle of Man.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland will remain a State Party to the Convention in respect of the Bailiwicks of Jersey and Guernsey, to which the Convention was extended by the United Kingdom and for whose international relations the United Kingdom is responsible.
Period covered: 22/12/2005 -
Source : Treaty Office on http://conventions.coe.int