At both our Chicago and Lake Forest offices, we provide a wide range of adoption services, many of which are described in more detail below. Contact us to obtain more information about how we can assist you in creating your adoption plan.
Consent is the legal process by which a birth parent voluntarily agrees to relinquish his or her parental rights and agrees to an adoption plan. The consent must be in writing and witnessed before a judge or other designated official. Generally, consents are utilized to relinquish the parental rights of birth parents who proceed without the assistance of an agency.
Designated consent allows birth parents the ability to designate specifically who will be the adoptive parents. This option promotes the birth parents’ adoption plan and gives them more control in the process. Birth parents may re-assert their parental rights if the adoption by the specific adoptive parents fails.
A legal father is the man who is legally recognized as the father of a child, regardless of whether he is the biological father or not. A legal father: (i) is the man married to the child's mother at the time of birth; (ii) is listed on the child's birth certificate; or (iii) has a court order recognizing paternity.
Surrender is the voluntary relinquishment of all parental rights and duties of a parent or parents, which legally frees a child for adoption. Surrender is typically utilized when the adoption proceeds with the assistance of an agency. Once a surrender is signed by the birth parent(s), the agency has the right to consent to the adoption.
A “Putative Father” is the legal term for a man who is alleged or claims to be the father of a child. Generally, a putative father (i) was not married to the child's mother at the time of the child's birth; (ii) is not listed on the child's birth certificate; and (iii) does not have a court order recognizing paternity.