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Anderson and Associates, P.C.

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630-653-9400

Wheaton contested adoption lawyersAdoption can be a wonderful experience, both for the child who is given a new home, as well as the adoptive parents who want to expand their family. However, it is a major decision that should include careful consideration. In certain cases, both biological parents may not agree to giving up their parental rights. Contested adoptions most often occur with infant adoptions, when one biological parent, usually the birth mother, wishes to place a baby up for adoption, while the other biological parent, the birth father, objects to the adoption. 

Reasons for Contesting

There are many different scenarios regarding adoption. Many infant adoptions involve a young, single mother who wants to give up her baby to a couple who are prepared financially and emotionally to raise a child. Older children who were in foster care can also be adopted through Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) in Illinois. 

A biological father may contest adoption for several reasons, such as in the following instances: 

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DuPage County adoption lawyers Adoption provides a child in need with a safe and permanent home. The Illinois Department of Children & Family Services (DCFS) is a government agency that responds to reports of child abuse or neglect. DCFS also protects minors by placing them in foster homes. In many cases, the foster parents wish to legally adopt their foster kids. Children who need adopting can come from all over, and they are all ages and from different backgrounds. Many have siblings who also need a loving home life. DCFS also offers support to help families adopt children with medical conditions or other special needs.

Who Can Adopt?

In Illinois, the first step in adopting a child through DCFS is becoming a licensed foster parent so that children can be placed in your home. An initial screening will involve a visit to your home. The process of receiving a license usually takes one to two months. DCFS works as quickly as possible to match a child (and possibly siblings) to an appropriate family. Those people who wish to adopt can participate in a 27-hour training to become fully licensed foster families. After the placement, a family can request to adopt the child. The request is generally approved by the department and the court after a six-month period.

The state does not have specific qualifications to adopt, but people who can provide an adequate and loving home are typically eligible to adopt. A few of the characteristics of an adoptive parent include: 

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Wheaton adoption and guardianship lawyersIn some family situations, the biological parents may be unable to care for their child. The parents may be deceased, in prison, out of the country on military duty, incapacitated due to illness, or simply absent or unfit. In these cases, other adults or family members may offer to provide care. Elderly adults or those who are mentally or physically disabled may also require the care of friends or relatives. In some scenarios, the person doing the caretaking may wish to seek legal guardianship. This offers all parties certain legal protections, allowing them to make decisions related to finances, living arrangements, education, and healthcare. 

What Are the Requirements for Guardianship?

According to Illinois law, a person must meet several requirements to be considered for guardianship. It is important to note the guardian does not have to be related to the child. The conditions that need to be met include all of the following: 

  • Be 18 years old or older;
  • Be a resident of the United States (courts may appoint immigrants who are undocumented in some cases);
  • Be of sound mind;
  • Not disabled by legal definition; and
  • Not convicted of a felony that involved harm or threat to a child.

What Are the Types of Guardianship for a Child?

Legal guardianship allows a person who is not a parent make important decisions for a child, just as a parent normally would. There are several types of guardianship:

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Naperville adoption lawyersAdopting a child is among the most important and rewarding decisions a person can make. Because a child’s life and future are at stake, adoption also brings a long and complicated process that is best navigated with the help of an experienced adoption attorney.

Adoption is a formal legal process that necessitates thorough planning and strict adherence to all related procedures. If you intend to adopt via the Illinois Department of Children & Family Services, you must do so with assistance from a DCFS-approved attorney, like those from Anderson & Associates, P.C. This service costs you nothing, as all lawyer fees are paid for by DCFS, which facilitates over 1,500 adoptions every year.

Adoption Timeline

After a background screening and at-home visit by a DCFS caseworker, to adopt a child, you must first get licensed as a foster parent, which allows a child to be legally placed with you. This process usually takes between one to two months. DCFS then sits down with you to match either a single child or multiple siblings with you. Once that is completed, it typically takes a little over six months for final approval from DCFS and the court.

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DuPage County Divorce Lawyer

Making the decision to adopt a child is not one that should be taken lightly. The adoption process can be long and arduous even if the parents have done all the necessary research and work to provide the best home possible for a new child. When you consider adopting a child, there are often common worries parents will discuss. However, many of these adoption concerns are unfounded, like these misconceptions:

Misconception #1: Non-adopted Children are Healthier than Adopted Children 

This assumption comes from a stereotype about the mothers who place their babies up for adoption. Some people believe moms who put their child up for adoption do not take care of themselves during pregnancy as they would if they were keeping the baby. This simply is not true. The National Center for Health Statistics states 85 percent of adopted children have excellent or very good health, compared to 82 percent of non-adopted children. 

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