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Requirements for Adoptive and Foster Parents

The demands on all those who care for and raise children are the same. However, there are other requirements on top of the obligations of adopters and foster carers. We would therefore like to draw your attention to a few important circumstances.

Important considerations:

  • Your reasons for adopting a child should be based on strong personal motivation (inner conviction).
  • Your employment and background should allow you to provide the child and the family with financial stability (together with foster care benefits in the case of fostering).
  • Your workload should be such that you have enough time to raise the child (initially, one parent must be able to stay with the child at home and adapt their life to the child‘s needs).
  • Your living situation should meet the needs of the child.
  • You should feel mentally and physically able to bring up the child.
  • Your age should correspond to the natural parent-child ratio (this applies to adoptive parents)
  • The crucial condition for the child‘s harmonious development is ensuring a stable family environment (or a safe temporary family environment).
  • You should be able to empathize with the child‘s feelings and understand the child‘s inner world, be patient, adaptable, tolerant, kind, and open.
  • You should be able to communicate openly with professionals and not be afraid to ask their opinion or advice..

Who can become adoptive and foster parents:

  • single persons;
  • persons living in a civil/legal partnership without marriage;
  • persons living in same-sex couples;
  • people who may have children of their own;
  • families with children of their own;
  • families with other children admitted to foster care;
  • middle-aged persons who have reasonable expectations for the age of the child they wish to take into care;
  • persons with health issues provided that their prognosis is satisfactory, and the condition does not limit their caring and educational abilities.

The Application Process

If you have already decided to accept a child into your care, you must first apply for the listing in the Adoption and Foster Care Mediation Register ("Evidence osob vhodných stát se osvojiteli nebo pěstouny"). Adoption is without mediation if the parents have given their prior consent to the adoption of the child by specific adoptive parents. In these cases, your assessment will only take place during the court proceedings for custody of the child, which will be initiated based on a petition filed by you. The social welfare department of the municipality of your permanent residence (in the case of spouses, the permanent residence of one of them) will accept the applications.

A list of the municipalities with extended jurisdiction can be found in our section Contact us.

You can obtain an application form (electronically, if necessary) from the office, and you will need to attach other documents to your application:

  • proof of citizenship or permanent residence in the Czech Republic (the Czech Republic must be your frequented place of residence). In the case of foreigners, proof of residence in the Czech Republic for at least 365 days is required;
  • a health assessment;
  • information on your economic and social circumstances;
  • other necessary documents (the exact list can be found in the provisions of Article 21(5) of the Act on Social and Legal Protection of Children, but you will also be advised by an employee of the office).

Under the conditions of the Child Social Protection Act, the applicants must also attach a written consent allowing the social protection authority to seek any necessary information about them for mediation, in particular, whether the applicant's way of life ensures a suitable environment for a child. At the same time, the applicant gives his/her written consent to verify at any time whether the relevant facts changed. Applicants shall also agree to participate in the preparation for the child's adoption into the family (compulsory course). A member of the responsible authority will also visit your home for an assessment. They will ask for a copy of your criminal record. If no serious deficiencies will be found, the complete documentation, including the statement of the authority, will be forwarded to the competent regional authority or, in Prague, to the Municipality of the capital city of Prague for a professional assessment and further processing.

Expert Assessment

Applicants for foster family care are assessed in terms of their personality, psychological well-being, health, integrity, ability to raise a child, motivation, stability of their relationship, and family environment. The attitude of the other family members towards the adoption is also assessed, as well as the preparation for the adoption of the child into the family. Section 27 of the Act on Social and Legal Protection of Children defines the scope of the professional assessment.

The relevant regional authorities, in Prague the Prague City Council, or authorized persons, provide the preparatory courses for prospective adoptive and foster parents. The purpose of the courses is to give you, future foster parents, the necessary knowledge about issues of foster family care, to provide realistic information about the situation and needs of children growing up outside their own family, and to enable you to clarify your ideas about the kind ofchild you want to accept into your care.

As part of your preparation, you will have the opportunity to meet experts and talk to them. You can also meet other adoptive and foster parents who already care for children and can share their personal experiences and answer your questions.

Based on a professional assessment, the relevant regional authority or the Municipality of the Capital of Prague will decide whether to list you in the register of applicants for foster family care. This is an administrative decision and you can appeal the decision to the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. If at any point the regional authority findsseriousreasons whythe applicantcannot be included in the register, it may decide to reject the application even before a professional assessment has been completed. The application may also be put on hold or withdrawn in the course of its processing at the written request of the applicant, depending on the current situation.

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