Who can adopt


To adopt you must be:

  • over 21
  • happy to make space in your life and home for a child
  • patient
  • flexible
  • energetic
  • determined to make a real difference to a child's life, for a lifetime

There is no upper age limit. Everyone must have a medical examination and health issues will need to be assessed. We cannot place a child under 5 years-old with you if you smoke.

There are other conditions, but these are not too restrictive. Keep in mind:

  • people from all ethnic origins and religions can adopt
  • people with disabilities can adopt – experience of disability can be positively welcomed
  • single, married, heterosexual, lesbian or gay people can adopt
  • unmarried couples in England and Wales can apply to adopt jointly
  • having committed an offence will not necessarily rule you out
  • you do not need to own your own home

Get in touch

If you're interested in adoption, please send us your details using the form below.

I'm interested in adoption

You can also contact our team by phone or email.

Adoption team

: 0800 652 1271 (freephone)

: adoption@thurrock.gov.uk

Adopting a relative or step-child

Adoption by step-parents or relatives can offer permanency and security to a child – find out more about adopting a relative or step-child.