Adoption in Illinois
Are you considering adoption in DuPage County? Adoptions can be extremely complicated, and as such, it is important to speak with an experienced DuPage County family law attorney. Yet just because adoption is complicated does not mean that this is not a valuable route to pursue. Indeed, according to a fact sheet from the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), more than 15,000 children have been adopted in Illinois in the last decade, allowing those children to have a permanent home while also providing the adoptive parents with the same rights and responsibilities as biological parents.
What are some common issues surrounding adoption in Illinois with which you should familiarize yourself?
Who Can Adopt a Child in Illinois?
Adoptions in DuPage County are governed by the Illinois Adoption Act (750 ILCS 50/). Under this statute, a person may be eligible to adopt a child if they meet the following requirements:
- Is at least 18 years old;
- Is a reputable person;
- Does not have a legal disability; and
- Has resided in Illinois for at least six months prior to initiating the adoption proceeding.
There are some exceptions. For instance, if a minor has good cause to adopt a child, then the court may allow a person under the age of 18 to become an adoptive parent. Additionally, if the adoptive parent is a member of the armed forces, the residency requirement is a bit different. In such a case, the adoptive parent must have been domiciled in Illinois for at least 90 days before the adoption proceeding is initiated.
Understanding Different Types of Adoption in Illinois
There are five different kinds of adoption in our state:
- Related adoption: This type of situation involves an adoptive parent who is related to the child. For example, if a biological parent is a single parent and gets remarried, the stepparent may seek to adopt the child (thereby also becoming a legal parent).
- Adoption agency adoption: With an agency adoption, the child’s biological parents typically go through an adoption agency to find adoptive parents for the child, and the agency is allowed by law to place the child with adoptive parents.
- Private adoption: This type of situation involves an adoptive parent or parents who have no relation to the child and there is no adoption agency involved. This situation can be difficult because Illinois law permits a biological parent to change his or her mind about an adoption for 72 hours after the child’s birth.
- Standby adoption: When a child’s legal parent has a terminal illness, the parent makes a decision about who will adopt the child (while the parent is still living). The statute clarifies that a petition for a standby adoption must show that the legal parent consent to the adoption while also stating when the adoption will occur (either prior to or after the legal parent’s death).
- Adult adoption: Sometimes there are reasons for one adult to adopt another adult who is 18 years old or older. There are certain requirements for this kind of adoption that you should discuss with a DuPage County family lawyer.
With each type of adoption, there are specific requirements. These requirements depend upon a number of factors, such as whether both biological parents consent to the adoption.
Contact a DuPage County Family Law Attorney
For any members of the Muslim community considering adoption, it is extremely important to speak with a seasoned DuPage County family law attorney about your situation. This area of the law is complicated, and it is essential to work with an experienced advocate who can ensure that your case is handled as smoothly as possible. Contact Farooqi & Husain Law Office today to discuss your options.