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IMANI’s President Asks GBA to Review Legal Fees for Adoption Processess

In April 2022, the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) adopted a new Bar Scale of Fees, increasing how much lawyers could charge for consultation, retainers, and cases. For adoption processes, legal fees are between the Ghana cedi equivalent of US$2000 –US$4,000

President of IMANI Center for Policy and Education, Franklin Cudjoe, has written to the leader of the lawyers association asking that they consider reducing legal fees charged for adoption processes.

Mr. Cudjoe in a letter on Thursday said high legal fees are one of the reasons that mainly discourage middle and low-income would-be adoptive parents from the process.

“Many well-meaning people and families who want to adopt but cannot afford the hefty expense of legal services in the adoption process become discouraged. As a result, there are fewer adoptions, and more kids are placed in foster care for extended periods of time,” he said.

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In April 2022, the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) adopted a new Bar Scale of Fees, increasing how much lawyers could charge for consultation, retainers, and cases. For adoption processes, legal fees are between the Ghana cedi equivalent of US$2000 –US$4,000.

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There’s also the problem of extortion by some staff at the offices of the Social Welfare Department, he says.

However, he believes reducing legal fees will solve the challenges better, as it would increase adoption rates and relieve the strain on childcare centers and orphanages by giving more kids stable and loving homes.

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“We respectfully ask that the Ghana Bar Association evaluate the present adoption legal fees and look into potential reductions in light of these factors. This can entail offering pro bono assistance in situations involving lower-income families or establishing a standard charge for adoption services that is more reasonably priced. We believe taking such action would show how committed the GBA is to advancing social justice and improving the welfare of underprivileged children.”

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