Adozione: casi particolari

Last updated on 27 March 2020 by the Italian Ministry of Justice


Adoption in special cases protects the relationship that is created when a child is placed in a family unit with which he/she has previously developed emotional ties, or children who are particularly disadvantaged (see Article 44(a), (b), (c) and (d) of Law 184/83)
The cases in which this type of adoption can proceed are strictly provided for by law and as a rule, with some exceptions, the adoptee puts the adopter’s surname before his/her own. A fundamental prerequisite is that the parents of the adopter give their consent, if they are in a position to do so.
This type of adoption may be considered in the following cases:

  1. persons related to the minor by up to sixth-degree kinship, or by a stable and lasting relationship, including a relationship developed during a long period of foster care, when the minor is an orphan;
  2. the spouse if the minor is a child, including an adopted child, of the other spouse;
  3. minors with a physical, mental or sensory impairment, stabilised or progressive, which is the cause of learning, relationship or work integration difficulties and is such as to give rise to social disadvantage or marginalisation (Article 3 of Law 104/1992)
  4. if it has been verified that pre-adoptive fostering is not possible.

In the cases referred to in numbers 1, 3 and 4, adoption is permitted not only by married couples but also by those who are not married or even single.
The ties with the original family remain and in this type of adoption the adopters do not acquire rights to any property of the adopted minor. The minor, on the other hand, has the same status as legitimate children and shares like any other child in the division of the adopters’ assets between heirs.
Lastly, it should be noted that, unlike ordinary adoption, adoption in special cases may, in the circumstances provided for by law, be revoked.
The application must be submitted to the registry of the juvenile court, stating the minor whose adoption is requested and the reasons.
The procedure is exempt from the payment of any fees or taxes.


For further information:
Milan Juvenile Court – Adoption of minors with special needs
Catania Juvenile Court – Adoption in special cases


Relevant legislation
Article 44 of Law No 184/83 (Right of the minor to a family and rules in Italy for the adoption of minors)
as amended by Law No 149/2001 (amending Law No 184 of 4 May 1983 on ‘Rules for adoption and fostering of minors’ and Title VIII of Book I of the Civil Code)
and as amended by Law 173/2015 (amending Law No 184 of 4 May 1983 on the right to emotional stability for children in foster care)


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