Placing a child for adoption

What effect will the adoption order have?

In giving a child up for adoption and consenting to this process in writing, a parent or parents relinquish all legal rights and responsibilities in respect of the child.

How does a parent place a child for adoption?

A parent should firstly contact their local adoption services in the Child and Family Agency/accredited body or speak to a duty social worker in the Adoption Authority at 01-2309306.

Who needs to give consent?

  • The biological mother
  • The biological father if he is guardian of the child through marriage, agreement or court order
  • If the biological father is not a guardian, the biological mother does not require his consent but if he is available to do so, he is entitled to be consulted by the Child and Family Agency.

How does consent work?

Consent must be given at two stages: firstly consent to placement for adoption and secondly consent to the adoption order. The parent giving the consent may change his/her mind and withdraw consent any time up until consent is given to the making of the adoption order.

Consent can only be validly given after counselling has been received and it must reflect a free and informed choice. The social worker involved in the case must be satisfied that the implications of the decision are fully understood.

The Adoption Authority of Ireland website provides further information on the issue of consent and the role of the each of the parents of the child.

Birth Fathers who wish to object

A father not married to the mother of his child can require the Adoption Authority to put him on notice of any application or the placing of their child for adoption, upon completing and submitting the appropriate form.


Adoption Authority of Ireland

  • Address: Adoption Authority of Ireland, Shelbourne House, Shelbourne Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, Ireland
  • Tel:(01) 230 9300
  • Website:
  • Email:


 Child and Family Agency

  • Address: Child and Family Agency, Block D, Park Gate Business Centre, Parkgate Street, Dublin, Ireland
  • Tel:(01) 635 2854
  • Website:

International Adoption Association (Ireland)

  • Address: International Adoption Association (Ireland), Terenure Enterprise Centre, 17 Rathfarnham Road, Terenure, Dublin 6W, Ireland
  • Tel:(01) 499 2206 Fax:(01) 490 3238