Ministry seeks adoption law revision

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Ministry seeks adoption law revision

The Ministry of Justice plans to revise the country’s adoption laws to help ensure that children find safe homes.

Under the revision, prospective adoptive parents will have to seek prior permission for the adoption from local courts and other government agencies, the ministry announced yesterday. The ministry will form a special committee for revising the adoption laws, and it plans to submit the revised bill to the National Assembly in the first half of next year for approval.

Under the current law, a child can be adopted by other family members upon the agreement of his or her parents and grandparents.

A child in an orphanage can also be adopted without permission.

Adoption experts have long argued that such lax laws create loopholes for adoptions in Korea, putting children at risk of living in harsh conditions.

The experts expressed concern that some children fail to end up with caring and devoted parents because of lax screening procedures under the current law.

If the changes are made, a local family court would determine whether to approve an adoption after scrutinizing criminal records and financial information about potential adoptive parents.

The court would also query them about why they want to adopt a child to ensure they have the right intentions.


By Kim Mi-ju [mijukim@joongang.co.kr]

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