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Page URL: https://practice.orangatamariki.govt.nz/our-work/care/caregivers/assessing-and-approving-caregivers-and-adoptive-parents/types-of-care/
Printed: 22/10/2019
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Last updated: 01/04/2019

Types of care

Caregivers and adoptive applicants can be assessed and approved to provide different types of care.

What are the types of care

Caregiver and adoptive parent applicants can be assessed to provide 1 or more types of care. Family/whānau caregivers can only be approved for respite, transitional or permanent care.

Respite care

Short periods of care to support the usual caregiver of te tamaiti.

Transitional care

Short to medium term care until te tamaiti:

  • returns to their family/whānau or usual caregiver
  • is placed with a permanent caregiver, or
  • is living independently.

Permanent care/home for life

Home for life is a permanent care arrangement for te tamaiti that is secured by legal orders. Permanent caregivers may be joint guardians (additional) with the birth parents.

A small number of family/whānau caregivers may decide to care permanently for a tamaiti without a legal order.

Family home care 

Care in a family setting in an Oranga Tamariki managed property. Often for unrelated tamariki until longer term placements become available.

Domestic adoption

Applicants become legal parents and guardians of te tamaiti when adoption happens through the New Zealand Family Court and an adoption order is issued.

For tamariki born in New Zealand, the birth parents choose approved adoptive parents to become the legal parents for their tamaiti.

Creating families through adoption — key information

Adoption Act 1995

Intercountry adoption

Applicants become legal parents and guardians of te tamaiti.

The other country involved in the intercountry adoption must be a signatory to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption.

New Zealand has intercountry adoption programmes with 5 countries through the Hague Convention when people want to adopt tamariki who aren't relatives: 

  • Chile.
  • India.
  • Lithuania.
  • Philippines.
  • Thailand.

Chile intercountry adoption factsheet (DOCX 105 KB)

India intercountry adoption factsheet (DOCX 1.3 MB)

Lithuania intercountry adoption factsheet (DOCX 104 KB)

Philippines intercountry adoption factsheet (DOCX 1.4 MB)

Thailand intercountry adoption factsheet (DOCX 110 KB)

Intercountry adoption applications for tamariki who are relatives can be considered and progressed for any country that's a member of the Hague Convention.

Hague Conference members

The Central Authority in each country must consider the intercountry adoption application. Oranga Tamariki is the Central Authority in New Zealand.

An Article 23 Certificate of Conformity of Intercountry Adoption is issued as evidence of the adoption. The certificate has the same effect as an adoption order.

Intercountry adoption in New Zealand

New Zealand Hague Central Authority and accredited agencies

Adoption (Intercountry) Act 1997

If people want to adopt a tamaiti from a country that's not a member of the Hague Convention

Intercountry adoptions of tamariki known to applicants can be completed under the Adoption Act 1955 if the other country involved is not a member of the Hague Convention.

Intercountry adoption applications to the NZ Family Court

Section 3 of the Adoption Act 1995