Family Law AssociationThe Law Society of Scotland
Glasgow 01413751222
Edinburgh 0131 278 3423
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    FAMILY LAW

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    PERSONAL INJURY

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WHAT OUR CLIENTS SAY

  • Many thanks for all of your help with our purchase and for making things run as smoothly as they did. We really appreciate it.Andrew Lee and John Struthers
  • I am grateful to the family law department at Jones Whyte for fighting my corner to secure me regular and happy contact with my children following a difficult time in my life David D
  • My compensation claim was fluid and explained to me from start to finish. I would recommend Jones Whyte to anyoneGavin Taylor
  • Brilliant job. Saved my licence for me aswell as my job because if the license went my job went.Kieran M

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25th June 2019

You may have considering giving a child or children a home with you and your family. You may have decided to adopt a child. In Scotland for the year up too 31st March 2019 559 children were adopted in Scotland. The average time to adopt was 6-12 months, however, the process could be much quicker and could take less than 3 months. Alternatively, the process could take longer and take up to 18 monthsDeciding that you want to adopt is a big step and you might find the process confusing. Below is a step-by-step guide of the adoption process in Scotland. If you would like to speak to one of our qualified solicitors about the adoption process then do not hesitate to contact us.  

Am I eligible to adopt?

There are assessment criteria to make sure that you are able to look after a child. The relevant legislation is the Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007 which sets out that you must be over 21 years old. You can adopt either in a couple or as a single person. To adopt as a couple you need to be either married, in a civil partnership or be live together as if husband and wife in an enduring family relationship,or persons who are living together as if civil partners in an enduring family relationship. There is currently no upper age limit, however you must be able to demonstrate that you have the space, energy and good health to meet the needs of children.

You can adopt a child no matter what your religion or racial origin is. You can also adopt a child no matter your gender. Single men and women;, men and woman who are married or living together in a relationship; same sex couples who are married or living together. Couples do need to have been in a relationship for a minimum of 3 years.

You may be unable to adopt if you are a smoker. Children under the age of 5 will only be placed in non-smoking households. However, some local authorities do not place children of any age in smoking homes. If you have smoked and would like to adopt then you must have not smoked for at least 12 months to be considered a non-smoker.

The process

 Making the initial enquiry

Once you have decided that adoption is for you and you would like to get the ball rolling, you should contact an adoption agency to make an initial enquiry. The adoption provide you with more information about adopting if you would like to proceed with the adoption.  You will need to complete and return the relevant forms to the agency and they will arrange for a social worker to visit you in your home.

Home visit

When the social worker visits you at your home, they discuss with you the preparation and assessment process and the checks that will be carried out to assess your suitability.

At this point you should be as honest as possible so that the agency can be clear with you about the challenges that come with adopting and also assess whether or not you are suitable to adopt.

Preparation Groups

The next step is attending preparation group courses. These will allow you to find out more about the adoption in Scotland.

Home Study

After the preparation groups, if you decide that adoption is for you, then you can formally apply to be assessed as a prospective adopter. You will be allocated a social worker who will assess your suitability to adopt by building your profile. You will meet with your social worker several times both together (if you are a couple) and individually to ask detailed questions about your own family background, your childhood and current circumstances. You will also need to have a full medical examination with your GP. This part of the process will take a few months to complete. Quiet rightly, the agency that you are adopting a child through needs to make sure that you are fit for the role.

Adoption Panel 

This panel is made up from social workers, professionals and independent people. You will be asked questions from the panel members. Based on the answers you give and the recommendations from the home report, the panel will decide if you should be approved as an adoptive parent. 

Most people who reach this stage will be approved, you should receive this decision roughly one week after the panel has sat.

Matching

Once you have been approved, the organisation you are adopting through will begin to consider if there are children waiting for adoption who are a suitable match to you and your family.

Adoption Panel 2 

This second panel will decide if you and the child are a good match. You will be given information on the child and their background, and you will gradually meet the child or children that you will be adopting.

The Adoption Order

Once your adoptive child/children have lived with you for a minimum for 13 weeks, you can apply for an Adoption Order. It is at this point that you might want to instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf or speak to a solicitor for advice on how to proceed. Adoption Orders can be found in the Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007  Once the order has been made, it will transfer all rights and responsibilities originally held by the birth parents of the child or children you have adopted to you. 

22nd June 2019

Over the past years, prenuptial agreements have become increasingly popular. Nowadays, couples are decisive and more hands-on when it comes to their finances. Prenuptial agreements allow couple to decide how they wish their assets to be divided should they ever decide to  separate or divorce. Although it might not seem a romantic gesture to suggest a prenuptial agreement to your partner, it is sensible to consider entering into such agreement.

It isn’t pleasant to think about separation or divorce before you get married or perhaps shortly after it, however, preparing for the possibility of it will give you a clear picture of what to expect if it does come to it. You may never have to use the terms of your prenuptial agreement, but it is good to know that you have certainty as well as clarity in the event  that you do separate or divorce

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

A prenuptial agreement is a contract between both parties covering varying arrangements. These can include protection of finances and assets and how these should be divided in the event of either separation or divorce; pension arrangements; as well as protection of existing assets.

Each prenuptial agreement is different and can reflect parties’ individual situations. For example, a prenuptual agreemanet can include a provision regulating what should happen in unusual circumstances can be included in a prenuptial agreement. Just take this out.

Why should you have a Prenuptial Agreement?

A prenuptial agreement allows both parties to enter into a marriage with certainty and clarity, allowing them to protect their inherited or gifted assets they acquired prior to their relationship. Whatever these assets may be,  in the event of separation or divorce, a prenuptial agreement will ensure the assets of both parties  are protected.

Will my Prenuptial Agreement be enforceable?

there appears to be a wide belief that prenuptial agreements are not enforceable in Scotland, however this  is not coreect. The Courts will respect the wishes of two adults and tend not to interfere with their wishes, unless it is important to do so.  Generally, so long as both parties are of a sound mind and they have entered into the contract without being forced or unduly coerced, the contract should be deemed as valid.

The Courts might however disregard a prenuptial agreement if for example, the terms of the contract favour one party over the other, or if they can be regarded as being unfair or unreasonable, or if either one of the parties did not have access to legal advice at the time of entering into the agreement 

Depending on your individual needs and requirements, there are complex legal matters to think about prior to beginning the process of entering into a prenuptial agreement. Our team of experienced solicitors will ensure that you have a good understanding of what is involved in a prenuptial agreement, providing you with clear points to consider. We will guide you every step of the way.

To discuss your individual circumstances today, call us on 0141 375 1222 or contact us on here.

18th June 2019

As one of the most common  features that people can be self-conscious about, our teeth are quite rightly afforded a great deal of care attention.

Some of us can spend our waking moments and final thoughts on their careful maintenance each and every day. It is unsurprising that instead of offering only short, biannual check-ups, almost all dentists provide clients with year-round packages to care for their  dental health/hygiene/smile.