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Adoption in Illinois is an option for those considering placing a baby for adoption or adopting a child into their own family. One of your first steps in pursuing adoption in Illinois will be partnering with an adoption agency that has your best interest at heart.

Adoption Near Me

Looking for more resources in your area? Check out the Adoption Directory for a listing of adoption professionals in your state.

Considering Placing Your Baby or Child for Adoption in Illinois? You can learn more here or call an adoption counselor 1-800-236-7898.

Domestic Infant Adoptions can be completed through adoption agencies or attorneys. Click here for a directory of adoption service providers in Illinois.

International Adoptions must be completed through adoption agencies or attorneys. Find an international adoption service provider here.

Foster Care Adoptions in Illinois can be completed through the Department of Children and Family Services (800-572-2390).

Gallery of children waiting to be adopted.

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Adoption in Illinois

By: Matthew Eduard Biondi

Are you from Illinois and looking to adopt, but you do not know where to get started? Does everything relative to adoption seem overwhelming and simply frightening? Are you unsure about the laws and regulations in your state? Then look no further; Adoption.com is the source for you.

All infomercial vernacular aside, Adoption.com really is a perfect source for retrieving any information you may need if you are thinking about adopting. Although I am from New Jersey, the assistance and tools I received through researching Adoption.com allow me the opportunity to discuss adoption in Illinois for those who may have questions about how adoption in Illinois works. I know it may seem slightly (or entirely) unnerving to trust someone from a different state in divulging some of the most important information you may need, but trust me. I have had the proper assistance that I am now able to pass on to you so that you will be equally, if not more, informed than I on how adoption in Illinois works.

A solid starting point would be to type Adoption.com into your search bar so that you are brought to the main website. Once here, you will be greeted with a plethora of information and platforms to explore to obtain the information you need. Before looking into adoption in Illinois, I would browse the guides and articles about adopting as a whole, just to ensure this is what you want and are prepared for. The aforementioned article/guide is the perfect reading material to fully guarantee adoption is the decision for you. Sandra Boynton presents a well-produced slideshow presentation about every question to ask before deciding to adopt and other resources even to browse to 100% solidify your decision. Once you are certain, the assumption is that you will probably like to look for all the adoption information in your specific state.

To do so, look at the homepage for Adoption.com. At the top, you will notice multiple subject lines with downward arrows adjacent to the words. Scroll your mouse over the word “adopt” and locate the “local adoption” option. Click that. You will be brought to this part of the website in which you are presented with a map of the United States. Simply click on Illinois and you will be brought to this page. This has everything you will possibly need. You will see three initial postings about how to handle domestic, international, and foster care adoptions. For example, if you were looking to go through the foster care adoption process, you would click on the information highlighted in orange which would bring to you this section. Here, you can gather information about registries, adoption records, and adoption agencies. If you still are looking for more, you can always go back to the previous page on Adoption.com. For some answers to frequently asked questions, you can scroll to the bottom of the webpage and receive answers right away.

You can receive information about what marital status you need, the regulations to follow for adoption in Illinois, and even if there is any adoption assistance you may have available. If you want a more in-depth review of every piece of criteria necessary for adoption in Illinois, the Illinois adoption guide is definitely something you should invest your time in. Just before the information at the very bottom of the webpage, you will notice a few photos with differing topics all related to adoption in Illinois. The first one you will see is the Illinois adoption guide. When you click it, you will be presented with a slideshow done by Liz Young. Here, she offers a walkthrough of every piece of information necessary for adoption in Illinois. She includes a more in-depth look at the standard criteria needed to adopt including marital status, age, work, personality, and experience. She also includes any disqualifying crimes that would inhibit someone from adopting in Illinois. She also includes information regarding the necessary process of completing a home study, the rights of the birth father, and even the information necessary if you are adopting in Illinois but are not from there yourself. She also includes all necessary information regarding domestic, international, and foster care adoption in Illinois.

If you are content with the surplus of information in that slideshow presentation but wish to know more about the logistics of how adoption in Illinois works, you can take a look at the wiki page on Adoption.com. Here, you will have every piece of information you need to put together so that you have a full, well-rounded understanding of all the laws, criminal background history, and post-adoption laws in Illinois. If you are absolutely overwhelmed by all of the technical terms, you can navigate to the forum section of Adoption.com. Here, you will find something similar to a blog post forum. Different people with similar questions and concerns post in the forum in which any interested people can respond and give as much feedback as possible. For Illinois specifically, there are even forums for specific towns related to adoption including Springfield, Illinois, adoption; Chicago, Illinois, adoption; and Joliet, Illinois, adoption to name a few. This is also a perfect place to submit your own question or concern for others to respond to and offer any assistance or guidance that they can.

Now, if you have gone over all of the technical and logistical sides of adoption and want to start looking for a child to take into your forever home and make a part of your family, the photo listing section of Adoption.com is the perfect place to start your journey. Here, you will be presented with a myriad of photos of all of the children waiting for their forever homes. You will initially see all of the children from every state awaiting adoption. However, if you wanted to specify per state, there is an option to do so. And lastly, if you are looking for a child to call your own, but are still unsure about what adoption agency to use or which ones even exist in your area, the directory will assist you. This is the link you will need to finally decide on which provider will be the best match for you in your adoption journey. Multiple providers are presented for your specific state in which you can browse and research so that you choose one that best accommodates your needs and your individual adoption experience.

If you, however, live in Illinois and wish to place your child for adoption, the Parent Profiles section of Adoption.com is where you want to research. Here, you will see any active profiles for hopeful adoptive families in Illinois. You can also look at other profiles from families who live in other states. Even if you live in Illinois but think your child would do better outside of the state, you have the resources to look for exactly what or who you think would be the best option for your child.

Trust me yet? I told you that even though I am from New Jersey, I would provide you with all the necessary outlets for your potential adoption journey. Of course, all credit is due to Adoption.com, and the multiple, corresponding articles, forums, guides, etcetera it has within it. Oh, there is one thing I left out that you can always try as well: when you are on the main webpage, there is a search bar in the top right-hand corner. You can always type in adoption in Illinois, Illinois adoption, or anything related to find any information you may be searching for. I would suggest navigating throughout the entire website, however, to familiarize yourself with all of the helpful options available to you. You will become more secure in using the website in addition to retrieving your information from multiple people and opinions. This will allow you to obtain a more wholesome, well-rounded approach to your adoption journey so that you can make the most beneficial and accurate decisions for both you and your future child.

The thing to take away from this, too, is that if I was able to obtain all of this information without the potential of adopting a child, someone who actually is thinking about it can too. They—potentially you—will be ten times more likely to actively take the time to do any research possible. And that is entirely possible. I was able to find all the information I needed if I wanted to adopt in Illinois, and everyone that lives in Illinois can do the same. The resources are there for you. The guidance is there for you. The assistance is there for you. Although I was the adoptee in my story, I know how much of a process it truly is. Taking the time to navigate Adoption.com and uncovering every bit of information you need will make the process 1,000% simpler. All you have to do is believe that. So, trust me?

The information contained on this website is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional legal advice. Always seek the advice of a licensed and qualified professional. While the content of this website is frequently updated, information changes rapidly and therefore, some information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies, omissions or typographical errors.


Can I Adopt in Illinois?

Applicants can be single, married, or divorced. Parents must complete a home study. The future home for the child must have adequate space for every family member living in the home. Parents will need to pass a criminal background check, medical history check, and prove that their income is stable enough to support another child. For foster adoptions, parents may need to complete 27 hours of adoption training before qualification.


What Adoption Regulations Exist in Illinois?

Advertising: Only licensed agencies or individuals holding a license issued by the department may advertise for services they are legally qualified to perform. No individual or agency of any kind other than a licensed adoption agency can accept compensation for providing any adoption services. Tit. 225, § 10/12

Relinquishment: A birth mother must wait at least 72 hours after birth to give consent for adoption. Fathers can consent before birth, but may revoke a consent given before birth up to 72 hours after birth. All other types of consent are irrevocable unless proved in court they came under fraud or duress. After 1 year from the date of giving consent no consent can be revoked for any reason. Ch. 750, § 50/9

Birth parent expenses: Prospective adoptive parents may pay medical and hospital fees in connection with the pregnancy. They may also give a gift or gifts not to exceed $200 in value to the birth parents.

Additionally, prospective adoptive parents can pay reasonable living expenses (rent, food, maternity clothing) 120 days prior to the birth mother’s expected delivery date but no more than 60 days after the birth of the child. Living expenses can only be paid if prospective adoptive parents receive approval from the court, and the total amount cannot exceed $1000 unless approved by the court to do so. Ch. 720, § 5/12C-70(c)-(d)

Birth father rights: Unmarried fathers wishing to receive notice of adoption proceedings may register their information with the Putative Father Registry. Ch. 750 § 50/12.1

Post-adoption contact agreements: Contact agreements in Illinois are not legally enforceable.

Finalization: Out of 1,591 adoptions completed in 2014, the average time between termination of parental rights and adoption finalization was 19.2 months.

Review Illinois adoption laws in detail.


Is Adoption Assistance Available in Illinois?

Many of the children waiting to be adopted in Illinois have special needs. Federal (Title IV-E) and state (non-IV-E) programs exist to help adoptive parents meet their child’s needs. In Illinois, monthly payments range from $361-445 depending upon your child’s age. For more information please visit NACAC.org.

Can I adopt a Child from another country?

It is always possible to adopt a child from another country, even if you live in the United States. Children under 18 adopted from a Hague Convention country entering the U.S. with an IH-3 visa may automatically receive U.S. citizenship.

Children adopted from a non convention country must qualify as orphans before receiving U.S. citizenship. When U.S. citizens finalize an adoption abroad, they must apply to the USCIS for an IR-3 visa for the child. An IR-3 visa classifies the child as an immigrant and provides the child with citizenship upon arrival in the States.

Illinois currently gives full effect and recognition to adoptions completed abroad when the adoption is completed in compliance with the child’s home country laws and U.S. laws. In addition, post placement investigators are required to visit the home to ensure the adoptive family is meeting the child’s needs. Illinois accepts a recognition of a foreign adoption decree when adoptive parents file to receive a U.S. birth certificate for their child.


State Contacts

Gallery of children waiting to be adopted: https://adoption.com/photolisting?page=1&search_type=region&range=UnitedStates

State subsidy contact:

Pam Mills

Department of Children & Family Services (DCFS)

Adoptions Administrator

1921 S. Indiana Ave, 4th Floor

Chicago IL 60616

Phone:  312-808-5250 x304

Email:  Pamela.Mills@illinois.gov


Adoptions in Illinois can be completed through the Department of Children and Family Services.

Applicants can be single, married, or divorced. Parents must complete a home study. The home must have adequate space for everyone. Only licensed agencies/individuals holding a license issued by the department may advertise for services they are legally qualified to perform.

Birth mothers must wait 72 hours after birth to give consent. Fathers can consent before birth, but may revoke a consent given before birth up to 72 hours after birth. All other types of consent are irrevocable unless proved in court they came under fraud or duress.

Prospective adoptive parents may pay medical, hospital, and living expenses. Unmarried fathers wishing to receive notice of adoption proceedings may register their information with the Putative Father Registry.

Contact agreements are not enforceable. In 2014, the average time between TPR and adoption finalization was 19.2 months.

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