Adoptions and Permanent Care

‘Providing children with permanent families; Supporting the lifetime journey of adoption’

Adoption in the ACT operates under the legislative frame work provided by the ACT Adoption Act 1993 External Link 

Report on key findings from the Review of the Adoption Act 1993 [PDF108KB] [RTF 2MB]

The ACT Adoptions and Permanent Care Unit provides a range of services for children and families involved with adoption and permanent care, these include


National Apology to People Affected by Past Forced Adoptions

On 21 March 2013, the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard , will deliver a national apology, on behalf of the Australian Government, to people affected by forced adoption or removal policies and practices.

For more information Link

For information about the ACT Government’s apology and local support please go to

Apology to People Affected by Past Forced Adoption Practices

The ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher presented a formal apology to people who have been affected by past forced adoption practices in Australia from the late 1940s through to the 1980s on the 14th August 2012 at the ACT Legislative Assembly in Canberra.

Past Forced Adoption Practices Apology [PDF 42KB] [Word 34KB]

The audio visual replay External Link is on the Legislative Assembly website.  The Legislative Assembly hopes to have the Hansard available by early evening on the Hansard site External Link.

The following documents provide information and contact details of organisations that may assist people.

For information and support contact the Family Information Service in the Community Services Directorate on 6207 1335.

For counselling support contact Relationships Australia on 1300 364 277.

For free and confidential 24 hour telephone counselling for people under stress or in crisis, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14


Overseas Adoption

The Adoption and Permanent Care Unit has a number of specific functions in relation to Australia's obligations for international adoptions under the Hague Convention External Link 

The Australian Government Attorney-General's Department, as the Australian Central Authority under the Hague Convention on Inter-country Adoption, is responsible for ensuring that Australia, as a whole, meets its obligations under the Convention.

A primary recommendation of the Overseas Adoption in Australia Report External Link  was that the Commonwealth, through the Attorney-General’s Department, take on primary responsibility for the establishment and management of Australia’s intercountry adoption program.

The Attorney-General’s Department has now taken on responsibility for Australia’s existing intercountry adoption programs and works closely with the ACT.

Information about Overseas adoption can be found on the Attorney-General’s website External Link 


Useful information about ACT Adoption and Permanent Care 

ACT Adoption and Information Services [PDF 477KB] [RTF 166KB]
Intercountry Adoption Brochure [PDF 481KB] [RTF 163KB]
Stepchildren and Adoption Brochure [PDF 182KB] [RTF 182KB]
Considering a Plan of Adoption [PDF 459KB] [RTF 164KB]
Local Adoption [PDF 469KB] [RTF 163KB]


Baby Bonus and Maternity Immunisation Allowance for Adoptive Parents

There are important changes to some families’ payments that came into effect from 1 January 2009. If you are the parent of an adopted child, there are changes to Baby Bonus and Maternity Immunisation Allowance that you need to be aware of. For information about these changes and how they may affect you, External Link


Search and Reunion

Search and Reunion Booklet



ACT Adoptions and Permanent Care Unit
Phone – (02) 6207 1335
Fax – (02) 6207 8888
Email –