Family Law Firm for Private and Stepparent Adoptions
Adopting a child can be incredibly rewarding for you, your family, and the young person you welcome into your home. It can also be a trying experience as you navigate the many steps involved in adopting a child in Illinois.
The good news is, you do not have to face the lengthy and often complicated adoption process on your own. At Laraia & Whitty, P.C., we help prospective adoptive parents in:
- Related adoptions, which commonly involve stepparents who want to become a legal parent of their spouse’s child
- Adoptions through the Illinois Department of Children & Family Services (DCFS), which requires a DCFS-approved family law attorney, like those at Laraia & Whitty, P.C.
- Agency adoptions, including 35 agencies in the Chicago area, some which facilitate international adoptions
- Private adoption, which typically involves a child that is given directly to adoptive parents shortly after birth, without an agency
Before you adopt, you want to attain the services of a skilled adoption attorney, so your family is legally protected. Laraia & Whitty, P.C. lawyers have extensive experience in all types of adoptions and can help provide the framework to ensure yours is successful.
Who Can Adopt a Child?
To adopt a child in Illinois you:
- May be single, married, in a civil union, separated, or divorced.
- Can already have children or not be a parent.
- Must display the ability to handle the added expense of an additional child or children, and have adequate room for them in your residence.
There are no exact income requirements for adoption. The main prerequisite for adoptive parents is that you demonstrate the ability to provide a satisfactory and caring home. If DCFS says you failed to live up to this standard, Laraia & Whitty, P.C. can help you file an appeal to reverse that decision.
How Do You Adopt a Child?
The adoption process varies depending on the type of adoption you pursue. Along with filing your adoption petition with the court, Laraia & Whitty, P.C. can prepare you for whatever steps you may encounter along the way. That may include an at-home interview with DCFS personnel, a background check, court hearings, and submission of the final certificate of adoption, so you can receive your adopted child’s new birth certificate.
Relationship with Birth Parents, Family Members
Once the birth parent or parents sign irrevocable consent for their child to be adopted, their parental rights are effectively terminated, and it is up to you whether you want your child to have contact with blood relatives. Keeping a connection with birth relatives is important to many children, especially brothers and sisters, which is why DCFS and most agencies try to keep siblings together.
If you are unable to adopt multiple siblings, Laraia & Whitty, P.C. can create a plan that maintains any birth relationships you decide are key to your child’s long-term development and happiness.
Contact A Family Lawyer for Adoption Assistance
At Laraia & Whitty, P.C., we assist with obtaining signed consent from birth parents, adoption notice publication, and, if necessary, family law and civil litigation cases involving DCFS appeals. Contact our Glen Ellyn family law attorneys at 630-228-9984 for a free consultation. From our Wheaton office, we serve clients throughout DuPage County, Will County, Kendall County and Kane County.