Overview

special guardianship order


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An order, introduced by the Children and Adoption Act 2002, primarily to provide permanence and stability for looked-after children (see child being looked after by a local authority) as a less permanent alternative to adoption. The special guardianship order confers many of the rights of a parent, including parental responsibility, on the special guardian, which means in effect that he will be able to make almost any decision about the child's upbringing. The following persons can apply for an order: anyone who for at least one year immediately prior to the application has been the child's local authority foster parent; the holder of a residence order in respect of the child; any guardian of the child.Unlike adoption, a special guardianship order does not terminate the parental status of birth parents and is therefore likely to be appropriate where there are good reasons why the child should retain formal links with his birth family. The advantage of a special guardianship order over a residence order is that the local authority is under a statutory duty to provide a package of services, including financial support, to a special guardian.

anyone who for at least one year immediately prior to the application has been the child's local authority foster parent;

the holder of a residence order in respect of the child;

any guardian of the child.

Subjects: Law.


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