Adopting a child in Illinois basically involves seven steps, which include contacting a local adoption agency, completing an application to adopt as well as necessary classes and training, meeting with a caseworker in your home for an adoption home study, getting a background check to be approved to adopt, being matched with a child or sibling group, preparing for and receiving an adoptive placement and legalizing the adoption. The entire process usually takes around a year from beginning to end, but this time frame can vary depending on the agency and the individual situation.
Many adoption agencies begin the process by asking the prospective adoptive family to attend information meetings or orientations. It is important for adoptive parents to understand the gravity and responsibilities involved with adopting a child. Once the adoption is approved and finalized, the Illinois Department of Child and Family Services is no longer involved in the well being of the child, and the adoptive parents take on the full rights and responsibilities of parenthood. Adoption is also only possible once the birth parents have signed over their parental rights or the parental rights have been taken away by the court. Adoption is permanent and binding, and it is a lifelong commitment.