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What You Need to Know About Illinois Adoption Home Studies

Posted on in Adoption

Wheaton adoption lawyerIn the state of Illinois, all types of adoptions require that a home study be done at some point during the adoption process. It does not matter whether you adopt a child from a private agency or through the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) -- everyone who is a prospective adoptive parent must complete a home study. The home study process can be rather long, but it allows agencies to evaluate the prospective family’s capabilities and to determine whether they are suitable to adopt a child. The home study process also allows families time to become educated and prepare for adoption.

Home Study Components

While some people may think a home study is simply just a visit to their home from a social worker, it is actually much more involved. In fact, the home study process consists of a series of steps and requirements.

Background Check

One of the first steps in the home study process is completing and passing a background check. All adult members of the household are required to consent to a background check and must pass it for you to be eligible to adopt. If there are children between the ages of 13 and 17 living in the household, they must allow a check of the child abuse and neglect registry as well as the child sex offender registry.

Interviews

Your social worker will likely conduct multiple interviews with you, your spouse (if applicable) and other family or household members throughout the process. These interviews will allow the social worker to get to know you and your household so that they can assist you with the adoption process and ensure a good placement. During the interviews, the social worker may ask you questions about:

  • Your relationships;
  • Your daily life and routine;
  • Your education and/or career;
  • Your experiences with children; and
  • How you approach and handle stress.

Home Visits

The social worker will also conduct multiple home visits during the home study process. The purpose of these visits is to ensure that your home is safe and suitable for a child. The social worker will want to visit all areas of the home, including the child’s room or area, the basement and the backyard. The social worker will be looking for any obviously unsafe conditions and any state licensing violations, such as smoke detectors that do not work, a swimming pool with no safety features or improper storage of firearms.

Training Requirements

The home study process also includes education and training to help you and your family prepare for your new addition. Illinois requires you to complete at least six hours of agency-approved training if you are applying for a domestic adoption. If you are going the international route, you must complete 10 hours of training, four of which must be completed in person. 

A DuPage County Adoption Lawyer Can Help You with the Home Study Process

Adoption is a rewarding way to grow your family, but it can be a long and difficult process. Help from a skilled Wheaton adoption attorney is highly recommended, as they can ensure you complete all requirements for any type of adoption. At the Goostree Law Group, our knowledgeable team of adoption lawyers have more than 80 years of combined experience in family law and are ready to help you with any type of adoption you may desire. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 630-364-4046.

Sources:

https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/f_homstu.pdf

https://www2.illinois.gov/dcfs/aboutus/notices/Documents/Policy_Guide_2017.04.pdf

 

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