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The High Court considered under what jurisdiction orders facilitating placements in this context would be made. The Court also considered what factors had to be taken into account when making decisions about relinquished babies, as well as possible outcomes and the procedures that should be followed in each case.
The High Court confirmed that there is no obligation on local authorities to exhaust family placements before approving a plan for adoption in cases of non-consensual adoptions: the 'nothing else will do' test does not apply.
The Court acknowledged the importance of the principle of confidentiality as 'an important consideration' in decisions as to possible placement, noting however that the issue will be one for the welfare of the child on a case-by-case basis.
The High Court in this case refused the local authority’s application to transfer the baby to Hungary and indicated that the only way in which that could lawfully be achieved is through the invocation of care proceedings.The full judgment for Re JL and AO (Babies Relinquished for Adoption)  EWHC 440 (Fam) is available here.
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