Making the hard decision to give up parental rights is something that requires careful thought. A parent going through substance addiction or battling depression may not be the best fit for a child, no matter how much they are loved. In cases like these, it may often be the best course of action to seek related adoption with a family member willing to take the children in as their own. Before you consider giving up your child to a relative, educating yourself on the potential complications and working with an attorney experienced in these matters is important.
What is a Related Adoption?
Related adoptions must consist of one adoptive parent who is a blood relative or related to the child through marriage.
Example One: The biological mother gets remarried and wishes for the new husband to adopt the child
Example Two: A sibling who already cares for a child due to the biological parent’s neglect and wishes to adopt them
Who Can Adopt in a Related Adoption?
As previously stated, blood relatives and those related by marriage have the option for a related adoption. This could include:
- Aunts and uncles
An agency is not required to be involved in this type of adoption.
Unwilling to Relinquish Parental Rights
For a related adoption to occur, parents must be willing to give up their parental rights to the child. In the first example, the biological father would need to be okay with giving up their rights to the new husband. In the second example, relinquishing rights may need to come from both parents. If the biological parents are unwilling to give up their parental rights, then a judge must find them to be unfit for reasons outlined in Illinois adoption law.
How Does a Parent Give Up Their Parental Rights?
Voluntary relinquishing of parental rights is impossible without the child being first placed up for adoption. Giving up your parental responsibilities requires a court order, which will only be given if the child is up for adoption or the court deems you unfit to act as a parent. Illinois prefers that a child has two parents, so giving up your rights may require the other biological parent’s consent. Going back to example one, a judge will usually only look to allow a biological father to give up his parental rights if the new husband is willing to accept them in his place.
Contact a Cook County, IL Family Lawyer
Once parental rights are relinquished in Illinois, a biological parent is no longer entitled to make decisions regarding a child or spend time with them. A related adoption parent is not obligated to allow the biological parent any parenting time once the adoption goes through. Think carefully about your decision, and then consult with a Chicago, IL, family law attorney. [[title]] can assist you in court regardless of which side you fall on in a related adoption. Make an appointment for a free limited consultation by calling [[phone]] today.