Stepchild adoption will be possible from 2018

The minimum age that a person can adopt will be lowered from 35 to 28 Keystone

The adoption of stepchildren will soon be possible in Switzerland not only for married couples but also for those in a civil partnership, including same-sex couples. The cabinet has agreed that the revised adoption law will enter into force on January 1. 

This content was published on July 10, 2017 and agencies, and agencies/ts

Any inequality will thus be removed and the relationship between child and stepparent will be legally protected, the justice ministry said in a statement on Monday. 

A couple will be able to fully integrate the stepchild into the family and make provisions should the biological parent die, it added. 

However, the adoption of children where neither adult is the biological parent remains not possible for same-sex couples or those in a de facto partnership. 

Other alterations to the adoption law including lowering the minimum age for a person wanting to adopt from 35 to 28, and the minimum length that a couple wanting to adopt must be in relationship from five years to three. 

Adoption secrecy will also be relaxed: a biological parent who gives up a child for adoption and who later wants information about the child will in future be able to obtain personal data as long as the child, who must be at least 18, gives his or her permission. If the adoptive child is a minor, the adoptive parents must also approve.

In compliance with the JTI standards

In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

Contributions under this article have been turned off. You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

Sort by

Change your password

Do you really want to delete your profile?

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Almost finished... We need to confirm your email address. To complete the subscription process, please click the link in the email we just sent you.

Weekly top stories

Keep up to date with the best stories from SWI on a range of topics, straight into your mailbox.


The SBC Privacy Policy provides additional information on how your data is processed.