Care Proceedings and International Kinship Care

Maria S Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review


Studies of care proceedings in England have established a rise in the number of children placed with kinship carers at the end of proceedings, and a corresponding fall in the number of children placed for adoption. Coupled with this there has been a concern about children being placed with kinship carers with whom they have little or no pre-existing relationship. Where a child in need of protection from abuse or neglect has transnational connections, it may be necessary to explore their potential placement with a kinship carer overseas. However, there are clear challenges associated with establishing whether an international kinship care placement is in a child’s best interests and securing a legal framework for any international kinship care placement. This study draws upon a quantitative and qualitative analysis of 100 care cases heard in England between 2015-2018, together with qualitative interviews with professionals with experience of international kinship care. It identifies significant challenges for professionals and courts associated with trying to ‘fit’ cross-border situations into a domestic legal framework. It suggests that these difficulties stem from an approach in care proceedings which fails treat international kinship care as a distinct form of care, with its own potential strengths and challenges.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-400
JournalChild and Family Law Quarterly
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 8 Dec 2022


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