Does Germany ensure the best interests of the child regarding intercountry adoption?

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Koch, Katrin
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The thesis answers the question whether Germany as a receiving State ensures the best interests of the child regarding intercountry adoptions. Usually the intercountry adoption practices of States of origin are subject to scrutiny, but receiving States also have a certain responsibility to ensure that intercountry adoptions take place in the best interests of the child. Although the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption has established important safeguards, as well as an internal and external co-operative system and essential principles, there is still concern about the number of practices which do not respect the child’s best interests, within which child trafficking is the most alarming. The protection of the child’s best interests is based on two pillars: the Hague Convention itself and its implementation within the German intercountry adoption system. The thesis firstly analyses whether the Hague Convention constitutes a clear and definite legal framework which is the prerequisite for proper implementation, and secondly, it assesses German implementation. In this context, the present work will illustrate the legal, executive and judicial framework of Germany from the perspective of a civil law legal system. Finally, this thesis will provide ideas for improvements, and will give a brief overview of the European intercountry adoption system. This study will be restricted to nonfamily adoptions, and will exclude adoptions for the purpose of exploitation.
Second Semester University: Queen's University, Belfast
adoption, Germany, child protection