Takalar Religious Court Determination No. 53 of 2011: Adult Declared Adopted Child

On 1 August 1988, the applicants were married. While they had no children of their own, they had raised and cared for a child named Muh. Ilham, now aged 21 years. Muh. Ilham's parents had given him to the applicants to care for because they had two other children for whom providing financially was already a struggle (at the time Muh. Ilham's father was unemployed, only working as a farmer). The applicants had been prepared to raise Muh. Ilham as their own and were able to bear the costs associated with caring for and educating Muh. Ilham because the first applicant had a steady salary with the Indonesian National Military's ground forces (Tenaga Nasional Indonesia - Angkatan Darat). The applicants requested that they be stipulated as Muh. Ilham's legal adoptive parents.

The court cited art 171(h) of the Compilation of Islamic Laws, which states that an adopted child is a child for whom the responsibility to cover their educational costs and the like is transferred from their biological parents to their adoptive parents, pursuant to a court judgment. Moreover, pursuant to art 49(1) of Law No. 7 of 1989, for the sake of legal certainty, an adoption based on Islamic law requires a religious court determination.

The court found that, pursuant to Islamic legal provisions, child adoption is legal if the following conditions are met:

  1. the child's welfare is prioritised;
  2. the child's educational expenses and the like are covered, per art 171(h) of the Compilation of Islamic Laws;
  3. the child's adoption does not sever the bloodline between the child and his/her parents;
  4. the child's adoption does not result in the child being deemed to share bloodline, inheritance or any other legal relationship with his/her adoptive parents, except for the responsibilities mentioned above in point 2;
  5. the child is to inherit one-third of their parents' estate, pursuant to art 209 of the Compilation of Islamic Laws;
  6. the child's adoption requires an agreement between the adoptive parents and the representative or person/legal entity facilitating the adoption;
  7. the adoption must adhere to current laws vis-a-vis the prospective adoptive parents;
  8. the adoption must adhere to current laws for the sake of the child;
  9. the adoption of a Muslim child is to adhere to the fatwa of the Indonesian Council of Ulama, No: U-335/MUI 182 of 10 June 1982; and
  10. in the interests of legal certainty, child adoption, pursuant to Islamic law and art 171(h) of the Compilation of Islamic Laws, be ratified by a religious court decision.

Acceding to the applicants' request, the court acknowledged that, even though Muh. Ilham was 21 years of age and adoption was no longer appropriate, the history and nature of the applicants' relationship with Muh. Ilham was such that he could be declared their adopted child.

FirstPreviousPage 1 of of 16NextLast