The official Adoption Authority of Ireland has refused to recognise nearly 20 adoptions of children from Mexico, a couple has claimed.
The unnamed family has asked the Irish High Court to strike down the authority’s refusal to recognise their own adoption, claiming it is unlawful and breaches their rights to family life under both the country’s constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights.
According to a report on RTE News, authorities refused to recognise the couple’s adoption of the Mexican girl because they cannot provide the ‘Article 23’ certificate required under the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption. This international treaty regulates adoption between countries and was incorporated into Irish law in the Adoption Act 2010.
But the couple say they cannot provide the certificate because their adoption took place before the Act came into force.
A Mexican court approved the adoption, which took place shortly after the girl’s birth in July 2010, but the Adoption Authority insist that they do not have the power to recognise the girl as an Irish citizen or the parents as her legal guardians.
The couple say they were in full contact with the Adoption Authority before travelling to Mexico and were not properly informed of the effect the change law would have on their case.
The court also heard a letter from the Mexican Embassy which described the affected children as ‘victims’ and said a solution must be found to protect their welfare.
The case will continue in June.