Can I adopt or foster if I have a disability?

Having a disability will not automatically rule you out to foster or adopt a child

Image of family outing with father in a wheelchair
The prime concern of the agency is that you will have the necessary health and vigour to meet the child's needs through to adulthood. For this reason, all prospective adopters and foster carers have to have a full medical examination carried out by their GP, as part of the assessment process.

Many disabled people have been approved to adopt or foster, and some disabled carers may feel that their experiences mean they have gained skills that are ideal for parenting, such as strength and determination, or the ability to care for a child who shares the same disability.

As part of your assessment, your agency will discuss your disability with you, as well as the impact, if any, it has on your lifestyle and the possible implications of you caring for a child. For example, would you have difficulties lifting up a young child? They may ask for permission to contact consultants who have treated you. As with all applicants, they will also ask about your support network (friends, family, neighbours and others).

Have you seen the Be My Parent features on disability?

Last updated: 01 March 10

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