Overseas Adoption: Final Adoption Order

Getting a Final Adoption Order from a Court 

A court must make a Final Adoption Order for an overseas child to live in Australia.

That Final Adoption Order will enable the child from overseas to legally, permanently reside in Australia with their adoptive parents.

One of the very last steps in the adoption process is for:

  • the adoptive parents to obtain a Final Adoption Order in relation to their adopted child;
  • if the adoptive parents wish to change the name or surname of their adopted child, then to obtain an order changing the child’s name;
  • that Final Adoption Order to be registered with the Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages.

In Queensland, the Final Adoption Order is made by the Children’s Court which is part of the Queensland State Magistrates Court.

The prospective adoptive child must have been in the custody of the adoptive parents for at least twelve months before the Children’s Court can make a Final Adoption Order.



If a Final Adoption Order is made, then the adopted child is legally a child of the adoptive parents from the date of that Final Adoption Order.

The legal relationship between the child and his or her birth parents is terminated when the Final Adoption Order is made.

The Final Adoption Order needs to be registered with the Registry of Births, Deaths & Marriages.

After the Final Adoption Order is registered with the Registrar of Births, Deaths & Marriages, a new Birth Certificate will be issued in the Child’s name.

That new Birth Certificate for the adoptive child will include the name of the Child’s adoptive parents.

Many adoptive parents will want to change the child’s surname to be the same as their own surname and in many cases the first name or the middle name of the adoptive child is also changed.

When a Court makes a Final Adoption Order, the Children’s Court can also if appropriate, make orders about changing the Child’s name.


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