Family Law Attorneys Aiding in Adoptions in Carol Stream, Chicago and St. Charles
Many people associate the practice of family law with divorce, but there are many other topics that come under the heading of family law. One of the most satisfying things we do at Johnson, Westra, Broecker, Whittaker & Newitt, P.C. is help families grow through the adoption process. Our lawyers use their decades of knowledge, skill and experience to make sure the adoption process concludes successfully and with the minimum amount of time, expense and stress on the parties involved.
There are many different types of adoptions, each of which with different legal processes and requirements. We help families navigate through the applicable pathways for:
- Stepparent adoptions – When a parent remarries following a divorce, the new father may wish to adopt his wife’s child as his own. A legal adoption provides many benefits to the child, including the right to support, access to health insurance, inheritance rights, and more, as well as an overall strengthening of the family bond.
- DCFS placement – Children who have lost their parents or been removed from the home due to abuse or neglect need a stable, nurturing environment to grow up in. Adoptive parents can provide that environment, and we can help make it happen.
- Private adoptions – We help parents add a member to their family through private adoption agencies or direct adoptions, ensuring that all necessary documents are carefully and correctly prepared and that the parties fully understand the relationship they are entering into.
- International adoptions – In 2015, Illinois no longer has a 6-month residency requirement for “re-adoption” or “domestic” adoption of a child that was adopted previously in a foreign country. Thus, a child adopted by parents in, for example, China, would not need to meet the 6 month residency requirement.
Illinois now recognizes same sex persons in a civil union or long-standing relationship to be able to adopt children.
Also, An adoptive parent who adopted a minor child in a foreign country as an unmarried person may file a petition in Illinois for adoption to re-adopt the child as a sole petitioner, even if the adoptive parent has subsequently married or entered into a civil union. The new spouse/partner of the adoptive parent does not have to join in the Illinois adoption case
Advice, Counsel, and Representation Throughout the Divorce Process
Achieving a successful adoption requires more than simply knowing which forms to fill out. For instance, if the child’s biological parents are living, an adoption generally requires their consent absent special circumstances, such as if they have abandoned the child and failed to provide support. An adoption terminates the parental rights of the child’s natural parent(s) and vests those rights in the adoptive parent(s). Litigation is sometimes required to establish paternity or terminate parental rights. Our family lawyers are skilled litigators and transactional attorneys, and we are as comfortable negotiating, drafting and reviewing contracts as we are litigating tough legal issues.
Contact Experienced Chicago Area Family Lawyers for Help with the Adoption Process
Trust your adoption to attorneys with decades of experience in the Chicago area helping people like you bring light and life into their family through the gift of adoption. Contact Johnson, Westra, Broecker, Whittaker & Newitt, P.C. to speak to one of our adoption attorneys.