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Wakenight & Associates, P.C.

1100 Lake Street, Suite 120, Oak Park, IL 60301

Oak Park | 708-848-3159

DuPage County | 630-852-9700   Mokena | 815-727-6144

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Oak Park, IL family law attorney for international or domestic adoptionFor couples who cannot have biological children of their own, adoption can be the only way for them to become parents. Adopting a child can also allow spouses who are already parents to expand their family. In addition, adoption can help a single person fulfill his or her dream of becoming a mother or a father. When considering adoption, there are typically two kinds: domestic and international. Determining which route to take involves many factors, such as cost, timeline, and medical history. It is important to do research and select the form of adoption that best fits your family situation or dynamic.  

Factors to Consider When Adopting

Adoption is a serious endeavor that should be carefully considered before committing to it. Whether there are two parents or one parent, there are many issues to think through and figure out. Some of the important factors to consider before embarking on the adoption journey include:  

  • Cost

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Oak Park family law attorney for adoptionMany couples struggle with infertility and therefore turn to adoption to achieve their dream of having a family. In some cases, parents might already have biological children but choose to adopt another child as a way to expand their family, or a couple may conceive a child after they adopted one. No matter what the circumstances, there are many children who need good homes, and adoption is a wonderful way to provide them with a nurturing, safe place to grow up. Raising children is not easy, and bringing up an adopted child along with your biological children can be even more challenging. 

Guidelines for Blended Families

If you are raising both adopted and biological children, you may find it difficult to meet each child’s specific needs while also making them feel loved and part of the family unit. It is important for every child to have a safe, loving home. Here are some helpful hints to consider when you add to your family:

  • Prepare children for a new sibling: Talk to your children and tell them why you are adopting to ensure that they do not think it is because they are “not enough” or inadequate in any way. Involve them in preparing for their new sibling’s arrival by having them help decorate the baby’s room or create a new play area for all of them. 

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Cook County family law attorney

Many people choose adoption for various reasons, such as a desire to expand their family, especially if they cannot have children of their own. However, adoption is a significant undertaking under any circumstances, and the process of adoption can be intimidating due to the emotional complications and legal intricacies involved. For many families, classes and support groups are great resources to help prepare the parents and the child for the transition. It is also helpful to talk to a law firm that has experience in adoptions to make sure you complete all the necessary legal steps.

Pre-Service Training Classes

Adoption establishes the adoptive parent as a child’s legal parent with all the rights and responsibilities of a child born to him or her. Sometimes, parents may choose to serve as foster parents first and eventually adopt the foster children at a later date. According to Illinois adoption laws, any child or any adult residing in an adoptive home for two years may be adopted, and family members are allowed to adopt any relative. The adoptive parent must be a resident of the state for at least six months; however, this requirement can sometimes be waived by the court, depending on the situation.

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Oak Park adoption attorneyAdoption is, by far, the most pleasant and wonderful area of family law for everyone, including the judge and us lawyers. Everyone is happy, especially the child.

Most of the adoptions handled over the many years by Wakenight & Associates, P.C. have been related adoptions. The most common related adoption occurs when the mother or father is the natural parent of the child, and the child is being adopted by the step-parent. Even in these pleasant circumstances where the child and step-parent have an established relationship, it is necessary to appreciate the legal consequences of the adoption.

When you adopt a child, that child is then your child, just as if you were their biological parent. All the laws that apply to a biological child now apply to this child. As a result, if you later end up in divorce court, the laws regarding primary residence, parenting time, decision making, child support, insurance, day care, contribution to college, etc. all apply to your adopted child. All the school laws also apply, as does the Family Expense Act, insurance law, criminal laws, etc.

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Oak Park Family Lawyer

Foster parents develop close relationships with the children they bring into their homes. Sometimes the bonds grow so strong they are difficult, if not impossible, to break. If you have been fostering a child (or children) and you are ready to dedicate yourself to raising them permanently, you may be leaning toward adoption. In some cases, however, guardianship may be a more viable choice. 

When to Choose Adoption

Adopting a child means you legally assume the full role of a parent. You will have all the same rights as parents who have had their own children, and you must also take on all the same responsibilities at your own cost. You will be the child’s lifelong parent, and you will need to provide food, shelter, education, medical care, and ensure the child’s needs are met at least until they are 18 years old. In order to be eligible for adoption, a child’s parents must give up their legal parental rights, or they must have their rights revoked in court.

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