Page URL: https://practice.orangatamariki.govt.nz/policy/caregiver-and-adoptive-applicant-assessment-and-approval/
Printed: 01/10/2022
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Last updated: 01/09/2022

Caregiver and adoptive applicant assessment and approval

The requirements for the assessment and approval of prospective caregivers (family/whānau and non-whānau) and adoptive applicants (domestic and inter-country adoption).

Updates made to this policy

The requirement for prospective Family Home caregivers to have a current COVID-19 vaccination status certificate has been removed.
If the assessment is for a prospective Family Home caregiver

The policy around direct applications to the court for an adoption order has been strengthened.
When a prospective caregiver or adoptive applicant assessment must be completed
Once the assessment is complete

The situation for private adoptions has been clarified.
When a prospective caregiver or adoptive applicant assessment must be completed

Who this policy applies to

This policy applies to all people wanting to provide care on behalf of the Oranga Tamariki chief executive or to adopt a tamaiti.

If the assessment is for a prospective Family Home caregiver

In addition to the usual requirements of a caregiver assessment, assessment for a prospective Family Home caregiver must include:

  • exploration and assessment of issues specifically relating to providing care in a Family Home
  • a panel interview.

Youth justice — custody of a tamaiti or rangatahi pending hearing

Where a tamaiti or rangatahi appears before the Youth Court, the court has a range of options for custody, including ordering that te tamaiti or rangatahi be:

  • delivered into the custody of any person approved by the chief executive for the purpose 238(1)(c)
  • detained in the custody of the chief executive, an iwi social service, or a cultural social service 238(1)(d).

Custody of child or young person pending hearing — section 238(1)(c) and (d) of Oranga Tamariki Act 1989

Once the assessment is complete

After our assessment is complete we must decide whether to approve or decline the prospective caregiver or adoptive applicant, prepare an assessment report and follow the relevant decline or approval process.

If the assessment has been completed in response to a direct application to the court for an adoption order, we do not apply the special considerations process. The social worker provides a report to the court and the decision to approve or decline the adoption application is made by the court.