The Law Office of Christina Martell
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27475 Ferry Road, Suite 130, Warrenville, IL 60555

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DuPage County Open Adoption Attorney

West Chicago open adoption agreement lawyer

Lawyer for Adoption Agreements in Kane County and Cook County

When a parent chooses to give their child up for adoption, they will want to make sure the child will be properly cared for, and they may wish to have a continuing relationship with the child. This is known as open adoption, and in these cases, both the birth parents and the adoptive parents will want to make sure they understand their rights. An open adoption agreement can provide clarity and create a framework for the ongoing relationship between the birth parents, the adoptive parents, and the child.

Attorney Chrissie Martell understands the complicated emotional and legal issues that are often involved in adoption cases. She is dedicated to working with families to address their concerns while ensuring that the rights of parents and children are protected. Whether you are planning to adopt a child or would like to maintain contact with your child after placing them with adoptive parents, she can help you create an agreement that meets your needs.

What Should Be Included in an Open Adoption Agreement?

When adoptive parents and birth parents agree to an open adoption, they may be unsure about what this will look like. By discussing concerns, expectations, and plans ahead of time, the parties can ensure that they will be prepared for how to proceed once the adoption has been finalized. Entering into an open adoption agreement can help answer questions such as:

  • How often will the birth parent see or spend time with the child? In some cases, adoptive parents may agree to meet with the birth parent once a year, every six months, or more often.
  • How will visits be handled? Depending on how comfortable the parties are with each other, a child may visit with birth parents in a public place or in one of the parties' homes. If the birth parent is a frequent, continuing presence in the child's life, they may be permitted to have alone time with the child, or other extended family members may also be involved.
  • What forms of communication are appropriate? If a birth parent does not live close to the adoptive parents, they may regularly speak to the child over the phone or through online video calls. In other cases, communication may be limited to sending letters and photos.

An open adoption agreement will not specify that the birth parents have any rights to make decisions about the child, and it will not include any provisions regarding financial payments or support. When a person gives their child up for adoption, their parental rights are terminated, and the adoptive parents will have the sole right to make decisions about the child's upbringing, as well as the responsibility to provide for the child's needs. Open adoption agreements will typically be limited to discussing how ongoing contact between the parties will be handled.

It is also important to note that in Illinois, open adoption agreements are not legally enforceable contracts. Because the circumstances of the parties may change in the years after the adoption is finalized, it may not be possible to follow the terms of the agreement exactly. Instead of setting down legal requirements, an agreement will function as a "good faith" contract that the parties will follow with the intent of doing what is best for the child.

Contact a Wheaton Family Law Attorney

Discussing questions, concerns, and expectations ahead of time can ensure that all parties are prepared for what their lives will look like after an adoption has been completed. Chrissie Martell can help you create an open adoption agreement that will meet the needs of everyone involved, and she can assist you in completing the adoption process as quickly and efficiently as possible.

To learn more about the adoption services provided by the Law Office of Christina Martell, contact us at 630-717-2772. We offer consultations for $100, and this fee will be credited to your account once you retain us. We assist with adoption and family law cases in Kane County, DuPage County, and Cook County, including Warrenville, Naperville, Winfield, West Chicago, and Wheaton.

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