small girl with mother

What is adoption?

Adoption  permanently transfers all the legal rights and responsibilities of being a parent from the child's birth parents (or anyone with parental responsibility for the child) to the adoptive parents.

Adoption is not usually suitable for Aboriginal children and has a different cultural meaning in Torres Strait Islander communities.

Open adoption

Openness in adoption refers to the way a child is supported to remain connected to their birth family and cultural heritage.  Open adoption recognises that children often benefit when both their families (birth and adoptive) remain in contact with each other after an adoption order has been made.  This occurs with an open attitude as well as actions, and is an integral part of adoption legislation and practice in NSW.

Want to adopt?

Considering adoption for a child in NSW?

Open Adoption Hotline

The Open Adoption Hotline has been established to help carers and others learn more about the adoption process. The hotline is 1800 003 227.The Hotline operates between 9am - 4.30pm Monday to Friday.

You can also submit an enquiry to the Open Adoption Hotline through the online enquiry form.

Information about past adoptions

The Adoption Information Unit offers a range of services about past adoptions for people affected by adoption:

  • adoptees
  • birth parents
  • adoptive parents
  • other people who have a family connection to an adoption and wish to make inquiries.

Find out more about a past adoption.

Changes in adoption

Past adoption practice

To report suspected child abuse or neglect, call the Child Protection Helpline on 132 111 (24 hours/7 days)