Skip Navigation 1 - Home Page 3 - Site Map 4 - Search 5 - A to Z 6 - Help 7 - Complaints Procedure 8 - Information Rights 9 - Council Contacts 0 - Access key details
 

Questions about adopting

"Can I adopt?" is often the first question that many people ask.

Why not see for yourself if you are eligible to adopt at:

 This is a great way to get started and our frequently asked questions below will also help you.

Back To Top

Am I too old/young to adopt?

The legal minimum age from which you can adopt is 21. However, there is no upper age limit and applications will be considered based on individual circumstances.

Back To Top

Do I have to be married?

No, we have adopters who are single and divorced as well as married and unmarried couples.

Back To Top

Can I adopt if I have any children of my own?

Yes, many adopters have young children or fully grown children who have left home.

Back To Top

Can I adopt if I’m gay or lesbian?

Yes, we consider your skills and qualities - not your sexuality

Back To Top

Do I have to be employed?

No but you would need to consider the financial commitments associated with raising a child

Back To Top

Can I adopt if I am from an ethnic minority?

Yes, we are keen to encourage applications from all communities.

Back To Top

Can I adopt if I have an illness or disability?

This will not automatically prevent you from adopting and each case would be considered on an individual basis.

Back To Top

Will a criminal record affect my application?

Certain minor offences or cautions may not prevent you from adopting. However, you must let us know of any convictions or cautions that you have at the initial application stage. 

Back To Top

Do I have to live in Gateshead?

No. We actively look to recruit adopters living within a 50 mile radius of Gateshead. Often, it can be an advantage for the child or children to be placed outside of Gateshead so applicants from neighbouring Local Authority areas are encouraged.

Back To Top

How do I apply?

Please see our steps to adoption section for details.

Back To Top

How long does it take?

The process usually takes several months from the time you make an application.

Back To Top

How is adoption different from fostering?

Adoption provides children with a permanent new family. An adoption order transfers the child's legal relationship from their birth family to the new adoptive family.

Some of the children in care do not need a new family, but rather to be given temporary care until they can return to their own family or move on elsewhere. This is known as fostering.

Contact us

Adoption Team
Gateshead Council
Civic Centre
Regent Street
Gateshead
NE8 1HH

Phone 0191 4336388
Fax 0191 4336396
Email adoptionandfostering@gateshead.gov.uk