The aspect of adoption is regulated by legislation in the form of Births and Deaths Regulations 2014 Section 10 thereof, as well as the Children’s Act 38 of 2005 Chapter 15 thereof.
It is quite clear from the provisions of the above mentioned legislation that adoption confers full parental responsibilities and rights in respect of the adopted child upon the adoptive parent as well as the surname of the adoptive parent. In other words, the adoptive child is for all purposes regarded as the child of the adoptive parent.
The adoptive child is in the same category as the child born of married couples.
Therefore, when the adoptive parents divorce, the procedure applicable in respect of children born in wedlock is to be followed.
The divorce of the adoptive parents does not rescind the adoption order. Section 243(1)(2)(3) and (4) of the Children’s Act 38 of 2005 does not list divorce as terminating the adoption order which subsists between the adopted child and the adoptive parent.
An adoption must be made by adoptive parents, one of the adoptive parents will be entrusted with permanent residency and daily care while the other adoptive parent will be entrusted with contact and visitation rights. This is determined by the principle what is in the best interest of the child. But both adoptive parents retain guardianship over the adoptive child when the divorce is finalized.