Can a single parent adopt a child in India?

In this post, we will talk about single-parent adoption in India, the laws that govern the process, differences in procedures according to religions, the age restrictions for adoption, the procedure of adoption, and the challenges faced by single parents during adoption in India. 

Can a single parent adopt a child in India?

Yes, a single parent can adopt in India. 

India’s adoption laws are always changing as the times do. Furthermore, when anything is claimed to be evolving, it implies that everything, including perception, is changing. There have been significant improvements in a society like India, where things weren’t always as simple as they are now. 

“Single parent adoption” is one of the transformations that India is going through, and the practice is growing. Nowadays, single parents who are not married can adopt their kids. Adoption by lone women is no longer frowned upon by society as a whole.

Single parent adoption

Adoption is the procedure by which an adult is in charge of legally claiming a kid as his or her own. 

Understanding that a child without a caregiver is suddenly welcomed as a son or daughter is highly energizing. Nowadays, single parents are more likely to file for adoption than couples, who often do so.

This was less common until recently, many people tried to become financially independent in order to have children, and shifts in public perception made it easier for single parents to adopt. 

The laws and rules that apply to this procedure are described in this article.

Along with the 1890 Adoption Act, the 2015 Juvenile Justice and 2017 Central Adoption Resources Bureau Regulations offer adoption assistance, primarily for prospective parents of all faiths. 

Only Hindu, Jain, Sikh, and Buddhist intending parents are covered by the 1956 Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act’s regulations.

The adoption laws of India

It was once seen as unethical and morally wrong for single moms to adopt their children. Never before have legal proceedings been so simple. 

The process is not at all simple, and Indian actress Sushmita Sen, who chose to adopt the first girl at the age of 24, has stated in numerous interviews that she had to submit roughly 26 documents in addition to other declarations.

And to cover the jury, her father was required to guarantee his bond with more than half of his possessions.

However, as the times have evolved, so have the legal processes and, consequently, the law.

According to the law governing juvenile courts, the adoption procedure totally transfers all of the child’s rights, obligations, and privileges to the adoptive parent, establishing that person as the child’s legal parent and severing that person from the child’s biological parent. 

This law facilitates and permits single parents to adopt their children.

This phenomenon has become more prevalent recently for a variety of reasons. People have improved their literacy and knowledge while also gaining more authority. Additionally, single parents who are widowed or divorced are raising their children on their own now as opposed to in the past. 

As a result, single-parent adoption was motivated by this entire procedure. People are inspired by the adoption decisions made by celebrities like Sunny Leone and Sushmita Sen. As a result, interest rates are rising, which is undoubtedly a positive development. 

Many kids live in institutions and orphanages because they have no relatives. In this case, single-parent adoption aids in giving the child the necessary amount of love, care, and support.

Contrasts in the Adoption Law

Depending on one’s beliefs, adoption law varies from person to person. The Hindu adoption technique is the adoption method that states: And they have the ability to adopt girls and boys. This adoption method is used by Hindus, including Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists. 

Additionally, if a wife or partner is present at the moment of adoption, that individual must also get approval, provided that the woman is in a situation where she can do so.

Hindu women can only be adopted if they are independent-minded, not minors, and unmarried.

Due to the prohibition on adoption, Islamic personal law does not permit full adoption. This is due to the importance of retaining biological descent, which should not be mistaken with adoption, in Islam.

However, they are able to request to be the child’s guardian. derived from the Guardian and Guardian Act of 1980. However, the Juvenile Justice (Child Care and Protection) Act of 2000 allows adoption to be chosen regardless of religion, according to a 2014 decision by the Supreme Court of India.

Laws of Islam and Christianity

Regarding adoption, there is no separate legal framework for Muslims and Christians. This is primarily due to Islamic law’s prohibition on adoption. To put it another way, there must be a blood connection. However, the ward may be placed under guardianship. The Parents Act set rules for this.

Christianity forbids adoption as well, but it accepts foster parents who are subject to the Foster Parents Act. To the Union of India and Others v. Shabnam Hashmi. The Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act now permits prospective adoptive parents to submit an application regardless of their religious affiliation. 

Adoption is prohibited under personal laws and customs, but the JJ Act is regarded as secular and grants each prospective parent the right to adopt.

Juvenile Justice 

The adoption policy is mandated by the Juvenile Justice and CARA Rule JJ Act and is applicable to all prospective parents, regardless of adoption. 

Juvenile justice legislation from 2015 defines adoption as “the procedure by which adoption is permanently separated from the natural parent and becomes a genuine child of the adoptive parent with all the rights, benefits, and obligations connected with the real kid.” 

Described as A woman may adopt a kid of any gender, and a man is not permitted to adopt a girl, as stated in Section 5 of the aforementioned statute. Additionally, the oldest child that one parent may adopt is: 

  • is 45 years old, 
  • and kids between the ages of 4 and 8 are 50.
  • The average age of children between the ages of 8 and 18 is 55.

In addition, there must be a minimum of 25 years between an adopted parent and child.

Regardless of faith, the JJ Act’s CARA guidelines outline a thorough adoption procedure for one parent.

However, there are several requirements that must be met in order to be approved. Any woman over the age of 24 may adopt children of any gender, according to the Central Adoption Resources Agency (CARA) standards that were published by the Ministry of Women and Children Development in 2015. 

Prior to a woman adopting a kid, the age restriction was 30, but after extensive legal action, it was dropped to 25. The statute governing juvenile court prohibits single men under the age of 25 from adopting a daughter.

Age restriction

If the single parent (male or female) is up to 45 years old, they can adopt children under 4 years old. Children between the ages of 5 and 8 can be adopted if a single parent is 50 or older. Children between the ages of 9 and 18 are available for adoption by people under the age of 55. 

The adoption of anyone over the age of 55 is not permitted. Regardless of their history of marriage, the CARA standards state that the age gap between adopting parents should not exceed 25 years. 

Those who are single and want to adopt must be emotionally, financially, socially, and psychologically secure.

The process of adoption is challenging but lovely. It offers hope to disrespectful children as well as to those who don’t have children or who want to have children but aren’t ready to commit. 

Although there can be challenges and roadblocks in the way, the work is highly honourable. Another option for starting a family is adoption.

Procedure 

There are various laws that determine who can adopt a child in what circumstances, but the adoption procedure is consistent. This is described in Sections 6 and 7 of the 2017 CARA Regulations. 

There are some differences between a child being abandoned, abandoned, or an orphan. The general procedure is outsourced. 

  • Parent candidates are required to fill out an online form to register. This form is available on the CARA website. Alternatively, you can contact the District Child Protection Officer (DCPO). 
  • Within 30 days of registration, the adoption agency will then produce a home survey report for the target parent. 
  • When the home survey report is published in the database, future parents can communicate their preferences and choose their children.
  • Adoptive parents are offered images of up to six children along with medical records and other studies. For the rest of the children to be released, you have 48 hours to book a child for adoption consideration.
  • In order for parents to meet their adopted children, meetings are arranged between the adoptive parents and the adoption agencies.
  • Even after the child has been given to the adoptive parent, the process shouldn’t take longer than 15 days, and the child research report needs to be signed in front of a social worker.

Restart the matching procedure from the start if the parent and child are incompatible.

Why are adoptions by lone parents so common? 

Adoption by a single parent no longer presents as many difficulties. This difference may have been caused by a variety of circumstances. 

Unmarried single women parenting their children alone may be one of these factors, as well as the growing acceptance of single-parent families as a result of divorce or separation. 

It’s possible that other variables, like rising literacy rates and women gaining more financial autonomy, contributed to the rise of single-parent adoption.

More and more educated individuals think that getting married is not necessary to experience the joy of parenthood. They frequently grow professionally and experience less desire to be a biological father.

In addition, several celebrities have contributed to shattering the taboos surrounding single-parent adoption by making the courageous decision to become single parents.

In India, How Much Does It Cost to Adopt a Child? 

The price of adoption cannot exceed 50,000 rupees, under CARA regulations. Expenditures may be incurred as the adoption process moves forward, rather than all at once, and include registration fees, home study fees, and formal adoption costs of the Corpus Fund for Childcare.

What challenges do sole parents encounter? 

Even if the idea of single parenting is becoming more accepted, people who want to adopt a child may run across resistance from their family, their parents, and society at large. 

The conventional assumption that a child can develop in an ideal two-parent home with a devoted, suitable father and mother is still prevalent.

Additionally, single parents can require a strong support network that can offer them the assistance and respite they require in times of need. B. Health-related expenses, after-school care, and business travel. 

There may be problems with one’s own finances. Additionally, some adoptive parents struggle to strike a balance between taking care of their kids and their work obligations. 

When looking for single guys who desire to be adopted, some adoption agencies could be more stringent in their screening.

How do you handle your failure?

It might be challenging to raise a child by yourself. Prior to adopting a child, be sure to ask your family for assistance. Talk to them honestly and share your reasoning for your actions. 

Those who are interested in adoption might rely on organizations that offer grants or loans for this reason if there are financial concerns.

References

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/despite-a-favourable-law-why-do-single-women-and-men-struggle-to-adopt-a-child-in-india/articleshow/70621618.cms

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