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Consent Requirements for Adoption in Illinois

Posted on in Adoption/Guardianships

Wheaton adoption lawyer consentAdopting a child is an exciting time in many prospective parents’ lives. Making an addition to the family through adoption can be a stressful and tedious process, especially since there are many legal steps that must be taken before the adoption can be finalized. One of those steps is gaining consent to adopt the child. The consent must come from the child’s birth parents or adoption agency and, in some cases, the child themselves. Giving consent means that the parents or agency responsible for the child relinquishes all rights and duties relating to that child to the adoptive parents. If you are planning to adopt in Illinois, it is important to understand how Illinois laws will affect your adoption.

Who Needs to Consent to Adoption?

Illinois law requires that the birth mother and birth father (who has established paternity) consent to the adoption of their child. In some situations, the birth parents no longer have legal rights to their child. In these cases, the legal requirement for consent can fall to other entities, such as:

  • An agency that has custody of the child.
  • A person who has been given custody of the child.
  • The child’s guardian or guardian ad litem.
  • A court that has jurisdiction over the child.
  • A close relative of the child.

Illinois law also states that a child who is 14 years old or older must give his or her consent before they are legally adopted.

When Is Consent of Birth Parents Not Needed?

In some situations, the birth parents’ consent is not required when an adoption is taking place. Usually, this is when parental rights have been terminated, but it can also include situations such as:

  • The child has been abandoned.
  • The parent has been convicted of certain crimes against the other parent or child.
  • The parent has failed to establish or maintain a significant relationship with the child.
  • The parent is mentally incompetent or unfit.

Contact a Wheaton Adoption Attorney

If you are considering adoption, you should be fully aware of the complicated legalities of the process. Consent can be difficult to obtain in some cases, which is why you should seek the help of an experienced DuPage County adoption lawyer to guide you through the process. The lawyers at Anderson & Associates, P.C. have over 30 years of experience in family law, and we and can provide you with the legal advice and representation you need to complete your adoption. Contact our office at 630-653-9400 to set up a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubpdfs/consent.pdf

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2098&ChapterID=59

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