Although the adoption laws in Illinois are geared primarily toward children, the state also allows for adult adoptions. Much like child adoption, it offers the benefit of a legally binding parent-child relationship, just as if the adult had been biologically born to the adopting person. How exactly does this process work, and why should you consider it for your family? The following explains.
Why Adopt an Adult?
Adult adoptions in Illinois rare, but they offer numerous benefits to both the adopting individual and adopted adult. Deemed the legal “child” of the adopting “parent,” the adopted adult becomes eligible for any inheritance that may be left behind once the adopting parent passes. Adoption also ensures the child has legal rights to make medical decisions for the adopting parent, should they ever become incapacitated or otherwise incapable of making such decisions themselves. In situations involving an adult child with disabilities, adoption can also give legal rights to an adopting parent, which they may need to secure benefits for the adult child.
Who Can Adopt an Adult?
Before an adult can be adopted, certain criteria must be met. First, the adult must be at least 18 years of age, and they must consent to the adoption. The adopting individual and adopted adult must also have an established relationship. In Illinois, this relationship can be established in one of two ways: the adopted adult can either live with the adopting person for at least two years, or the adopted adult may be directly related to the adopting individual. The relationship must fall under one of the following to be considered valid:
Navigating the Adult Adoption Process
Unlike other types of adoption, adult adoptions do not require in-home visits or assistance from an adoption agency. Still, it is highly recommended that adopting individuals seek legal guidance with the process, as it can be highly complex. Further, an attorney can assist with the preparation of paperwork and can help you understand your legal rights.
At Mevorah Law Offices LLC, we understand that every family is unique. We can help you grow yours through adoption or adult adoption. Dedicated and experienced, our DuPage County family law attorneys stand by your side, helping you navigate the process, every step of the way. Schedule a free consultation with us to learn more. Call 630-932-9100 today.
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