The Law Firm of Debra J. Braselton, P.C.
Illinois Matrimonial and Family Law 630-DIVORCE

How to adopt in Illinois

Adoption in Illinois is governed by the Illinois Adoption Act. It determines the types of adoptions that are available within the state, as well as who is eligible to adopt or be adopted. In addition, it defines the adoption process and requirements.

Illinois allows 5 differing types of adoptions. They are Related, Agency, Private, Adoption of an Adult, and Standby Adoption. In any of these where the adoptee is a minor, termination of the biological parents' rights is a necessary prerequisite. Termination of rights may be either voluntary or involuntary depending on the circumstances of the adoption. If a court deems biological parents to be unfit for any reason, it may terminate parental rights on its own accord. Otherwise, biological parents must execute a consent and surrender in front of a judge for an adoption to move forward.

A person is eligible to adopt in Illinois if he or she does not have a legal disability, has resided in the state for a minimum of 6 months or 90 days if a military service member, and has a good reputation. The majority of the time, they must be 18 or older. However, a court has the discretion to waive this requirement when necessary. Parties pursuing adoption may be single or married. If married, both spouses must submit to all requirements, fingerprinting, and background investigations.

The adoption process is complex and time consuming. Allowing an experienced attorney to offer guidance and support can bring peace of mind and insure no mistakes are made that could delay the process. It is comforting to have someone on call who can answer all of the questions that will inevitably arise throughout.

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