What is a Statement of Wishes?
A Statement of Wishes is a written statement provided to the Chief Executive of the Department for Child Protection by an adopted person, birth parent or adoptive parent that sets out their wishes in relation to contact by another party to the adoption. Statements of Wishes are provided for in section 27B(4) of the Adoption Act 1988, which came into effect on 18 December 2017. Statement lodged with the Department will be held into the future by the Department for Child Protection and by the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages.
As from 18 December 2017 a person who has lodged a direction under the ‘old section 27B’ of the Adoption Act 1988 (“an old section 27B direction”) may provide a ‘Statement of Wishes’ to the Department for Child Protection.
If you lodge a Statement of Wishes and another party to the adoption applies for information relating to you after 17 December 2022, the Department and/or registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages, must include a copy of your Statement of Wishes with any information released. This ensures that the party receiving the information knows what the other party thinks about whether or not they want contact.
A Statement of Wishes is not a veto and does not operate to prevent a person from obtaining access to adoption information, including information which would enable another person to be traced.