Irish Council Of Social Workers In Adoption



Changes in legislation have granted adopted and other individuals the right to access information about their birth origins. The Birth Information and Tracing Act was introduced in 2022. People who were adopted, boarded out, subject of an illegal birth registration or born in a Mother and Baby Home or County Home Institutions now have clear access to information and records about their birth and early life.

Adoption In Ireland

The Adoption Act 1952 introduced legal adoption into Ireland for the first time. The Adoption Act 2010 consolidates all of the legislation pertaining to Adoption In Ireland as well as ratifying the 1993 Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-Operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption.

Sibling Search

• Raised by your birth mother and/or birth father.
• Raised by a family member.
• Raised in a foster family.
• Raised by adoptive parents.
• Subject to an illegal birth registration.

Discovering that you have siblings can be both overwhelming and exciting. It may take some time for you and your family to adjust to the knowledge of their existence.

When embarking on a search, it is essential to consider the following:

• What motivates your search? (Curiosity, clarification of the past, or establishing/renewing a longed-for relationship?)

• What do you hope to achieve by tracing your siblings?

• What might be the potential impact on you and your family?

• Will you proceed to search without a Tracing Service?

• Will you consider tracing and contact through a DNA test with an agency like DNA Ancestry or My Heritage?

• Will you proceed with the assistance of a Tracing Service (TUSLA Child and Family Agency/AAI)?

• Do you have the support of a close friend or family member?

• Have you been able to ascertain your birth mother or birth father’s thoughts regarding the search?

• Have you considered potential cultural and ethnic differences?

First Steps In Searching For Information About An Adoption

The following information may be of help to you if your son/daughter has made the decision to search for information about his / her adoption.

You may be able to share some information with your son/daughter about the time when he/she was placed with you, for example the name of the adoption agency involved.

Al agencies and the Adoption Authority of Ireland accept enquires from those aged 18 and over.
Your son or daughter can write to the adoption agency involved in his/her adoption.

If you do not know or remember the name of the agency, this information will be available from:
The Adoption Authority of Ireland, Shelbourne House,Shelbourne Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4.
Tel: 01-2309300
Freephone 1800 309 300.
Email: info@aa.gov.ie

Birth Parent(s)

The spirit of the 1952 Adoption Act was based on a closed system of adoption. It was not envisaged that a birth parent or an adopted person would ever seek to have contact with each other again. Confidentiality surrounding adoption of children was of paramount concern. The majority of children were placed through registered adoption agencies or the local HealthBoards (now Health Service Executive).

Adoptive Parents

Helpful Information if your son/daughter is thinking about searching.
Although most agencies accept enquires from adopted people aged 18 years and over, adoption agencies are very open ot enquire from adoptive parents while their son or daughter is under 18 years of age.

Birth Mothers

If you are a mother who has lost a child through adoption, this booklet has been produced to assist you to prepare for contact with your adult, adopted child. If contact with your son or daughter has already occurred, this information will also be useful in dealing with the on-going issues which may arise. Although it has been written with mothers in mind, much of the material in this booklet also applies to fathers.

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