At The Wengler Law Firm in Joliet, we are proud to help clients in Will County and beyond to expand their families through the adoption process.
We will carefully guide you through the legal requirements and the paperwork. Most importantly, we will work to ensure that your adoption is final. We want you to be able to focus on caring for your new child instead of worrying about having to defend your parental rights in the future.
Related, Unrelated And Adult Adoptions
People adopt for different reasons, and there are three main categories of family adoption in Illinois:
- Unrelated adoption — In an unrelated child adoption, an individual or couple goes through an agency or organization. The process often takes six to eight months and requires background checks, fingerprinting and a home study conducted by a qualified social worker.
- Related adoption — A related adoption can be quite fast and relatively simple. In these cases, a relative of the child — such as a stepparent, grandparent or cousin — seeks to legally formalize their role as a primary caregiver.
- Adoption of a person over age 18 — While rare, adult adoption is a way to ensure that a person with whom you are close will enjoy inheritance rights after you pass away. There are several rules limiting the ability of one adult to adopt another, so you will need the guidance of one of our attorneys if you are considering adult adoption.
The circumstances of your adoption will affect the legal requirements and the length of the process.
Legal Representation Is A Clear Necessity
Adoption is one area of law in which you cannot realistically represent yourself. It is highly specialized and the requirements are very particular. You must complete the right steps at the right time and in the right way, otherwise you jeopardize your chances of success.
In many cases, adoption involves terminating the rights of the biological parents, which can lead to litigious disputes. There are constitutional and statutory safeguards built into the process of terminating parental rights, so it is vital to work with a highly experienced advocate.
Let The Wengler Law Firm help you navigate the adoption process as quickly and smoothly as possible. For a consultation with one of our lawyers, call 815-768-3819, or contact us via our online email form.