When wishing to adopt a child within Finland, applicants must apply to the Adoption Board for a permission for domestic adoption. An adoption permission is not needed for domestic adoptions in which a married spouse intends to adopt a child of their spouse for sole custody, whether during their marriage or after the marriage has ended due to the death of the their spouse. An adoption permission is also not needed if the child has come to live with the applicant for purposes other than adoption and if the child has been established as being provided care and upbringing by the applicant.
Adopting a child in Finland always requires adoption counselling. Adoption counselling is provided either by the family law services unit in the wellbeing services county or by Save the Children. Consult your wellbeing service county authorities for this information. Adoption counselling is provided by a social worker specialising in adoption matters. The adoption counselling provider submits to the Adoption Board a report prepared on the basis of the adoption counselling regarding the circumstances of the applicants, their suitability and any other required information.
The actual placement of the child is managed by the social worker responsible for adoption counselling, in collaboration with another social worker or other employee specialising in child welfare. The adoption counsellor ensures that the applicants apply to the relevant District Court immediately for confirmation of the adoption.
A permission to adopt is granted by the Adoption Board for a fixed term of no more than two years at a time. The validity of a permission may be extended on application.