Irish Supreme Court judgment on Hague Convention and adoption in England.
The link is to the judgment of the Irish Supreme Court on matters relating to the Hague Convention and adoption.
A number of parents have won legal cases in Ireland which prevented their children being returned to England and placed in care on the basis that this would lead to adoption.
This case was an interesting one because the children were not actually in care or even subject to a care order, but that care proceedings were "pending". (Viz an application had been made to court.)
The first test in international public family law is one as to which country has jurisdiction. This is based on "habitual residence". It is now clearly the case that if court proceedings have started in England then the habitual residence is accepted as being in England even if the family have moved to Ireland.
The case has also looked at the question as to whether non-Irish citizens have Irish Constitutional Rights, but without resolving the issue in any way.
The judgment is a long and interesting one that is worth reading for anyone interested in this issue. Where it is wrong is that it sees the Irish and English law as being on the same spectrum. I believe in the long term that it will be recognised both that this is not the case and also that the trend in law has been damaging for children. The trend in law actually has been resisted for millennia and exists in the bible (Job 24:9
). There is today as there has been in the past a demand for children from adoptive parents. There is a tendency for the system to respond to that demand by providing children from economically or politically weaker families.
If this all happens in secret then it tends to succeed without challenge, but if it is subject to proper public scrutiny then it is resisted.
What is clear about judicial systems and secrecy is that secrecy undermines the rule of law. At time it may be arguable that the secrecy is more important than the rule of law. However, if that is not the case then secrecy is to be avoided.
My advice to parents facing care proceedings is to follow the law. The law does not prevent people from emigrating when there are no proceedings. People considering emigrating to Ireland need to consider the financial issues. Since the financial crisis obtaining benefits in Ireland has been very difficult. Hence it is only those people with adequate resources that can do this.