Illinois

Illinois

Adoption

Access to Adoption Records

Who May Access Information
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750, §§ 50/18.1; 50/18.4The following persons may apply to the Illinois Adoption Registry:

  • Either birth parent
  • If the birth parent is deceased, the adopted person’s adult birth sibling or a birth aunt or birth uncle
  • Any adult adopted person or any adoptive parent or legal guardian of an adopted person under age 21
  • If the adopted person is deceased, any surviving spouse or adult child
  • Any adoptive parent or legal guardian of a deceased adult adopted person

Nonidentifying information may be provided to the adoptive parents, the adopted person, or legal guardian who is a registrant of the Illinois Adoption Registry.

Access to Nonidentifying Information
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750, § 50/18.4

The adoptive parents shall receive in writing the following nonidentifying information, if known, not later than the date of placement of the child:

  • The birth parents’ age
  • The birth parents’ race, religion, and ethnic background
  • The general physical appearance of the birth parents
  • The birth parents’ education, occupation, hobbies, interests, and talents
  • The existence of any other children born to the birth parents
  • Information about birth grandparents, their reason for emigrating into the United States, if applicable, and country of origin
  • The relationship between the birth parents
  • Detailed medical and mental health histories of the child, the birth parents, and their immediate relatives
  • The actual date and place of birth of the adopted person

No information provided under this subsection shall disclose the name or last known address of the birth parents, grandparents, the siblings of the birth parents, the adopted person, or any other relative of the adopted person.

Any adopted person age 18 or older shall be given the information listed above upon request.

The Illinois Adoption Registry shall release any nonidentifying information above that appears on the certified copy of the original birth certificate or the Certificate of Adoption to an adopted person, adoptive parent, or legal guardian who is a registrant of the Illinois Adoption Registry.

Mutual Access to Identifying Information
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750, §§ 50/18.1; 50/18.3a

The Department of Public Health shall establish and maintain a registry for the purpose of allowing mutually consenting members of birth and adoptive families to exchange identifying and medical information. Identifying information shall mean any one or more of the following:

  • The name and last known address of the consenting person or persons
  • A copy of the Illinois Adoption Registry Application of the consenting person or persons
  • A noncertified copy of the original birth certificate of an adult adopted person

Each registrant may indicate whether exchange of information is authorized or denied. Written authorization from all parties must be received prior to disclosure of any identifying information. If information is disclosed, the department shall redact it to remove any identifying information about any party who has not consented to the disclosure of identifying information. Any other disclosure of information requires a court order.

Any adult adopted person, adoptive parent or legal guardian of an adopted minor, or birth parent of an adult adopted person may petition the court for appointment of a confidential intermediary for the purpose of exchanging medical information, obtaining identifying information, or arranging contact with one or more mutually consenting birth relatives.

Beginning January 1, 2006, any adult adopted person, adoptive parent or legal guardian of a minor adopted person, any birth parent, sibling, aunt, or uncle of an adult adopted person, or any surviving child, adoptive parent, or surviving spouse of a deceased adopted person who wishes to petition the court for the appointment of a confidential intermediary shall be required to accompany their petition with proof of registration with the Illinois Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange.

Access to Original Birth Certificate
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750, § 50/18.1b

Beginning November 15, 2011, any adult adopted person who was born in Illinois on or after January 1, 1946, may complete and file with the registry a request for a noncertified copy of an original birth certificate. In cases in which the adopted person is deceased, his or her surviving adult child or spouse who has registered with the registry may request a noncertified copy of the original birth certificate.

If the registry confirms that a requesting adult adopted person, the parent of a requesting adult child of a deceased adopted person, or the husband or wife of a requesting surviving spouse was not the object of a Denial of Information Exchange filed by a birth parent on or before December 31, 2010, and that no birth parent named on the original birth certificate has filed a Birth Parent Preference Form where Option E (prohibit the release of identifying information) was selected prior to the receipt of a request for a noncertified copy of an original birth certificate, the registry shall provide the adult adopted person or his or her surviving adult child or spouse with an unaltered noncertified copy of the adopted person’s original birth certificate.

Where the Information Can Be Located

  • Illinois Adoption Registry, Illinois Department of Public Health
  • Confidential Intermediary Service of Illinois, Midwest Adoption Center (MAC)

Collection of Family Information About Adopted Persons and Their Birth Families

Agency or Person Preparing the Report
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750 § 50/18.4
The written report shall be prepared by:

  • The agency
  • The Department of Children and Family Services
  • Court Supportive Services, Juvenile Division of the Circuit Court
  • The Probation Officers of the Circuit Court involved in the adoption proceedings

Contents of Report About the Adopted Person
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750 § 50/18.4a
To the extent currently in possession of the agency, the medical and mental health histories of the child and of the birth parents, with information identifying the birth parents deleted, shall be provided to the child’s prospective adoptive parent. The medical and mental health histories shall include all the following available information:

  • Conditions or diseases believed to be hereditary
  • Drugs or medications taken by the child’s birth mother during pregnancy
  • Psychological and psychiatric information
  • Any other information that may be a factor influencing the child’s present or future health

Contents of Report About the Birth Family
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750 § 50/18.4
The following nonidentifying information, if known, shall be given to the adoptive parents:

  • The ages of the birth parents
  • The races, religions, and ethnic backgrounds of the birth parents
  • The general physical appearances of the birth parents
  • The education, occupations, hobbies, interests, and talents of the birth parents
  • The existence of any other children born to the birth parents
  • Information about birth grandparents
  • The reason the birth parents emigrated to the United States, if applicable, and the countries of origin
  • The relationship of the birth parents
  • Detailed medical and mental health histories of the child, the birth parents, and their immediate relatives
  • The actual date and place of birth of the adopted child

When the Report Is Made
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750, §§ 50/18; 50/18.4
Nonidentifying information about the birth family, to the extent known, shall be given to the adoptive parents no later than the date of placement.Medical and mental health histories of the child shall be provided to the child’s prospective adoptive parent and shall be provided upon request to an adoptive parent when a child has been adopted.

Exceptions for Stepparent or Relative Adoptions
Citation: Comp. Stat. Ch. 750, § 50/6
An investigation shall not be made when the petitioner seeks to adopt a related child or an adult unless the court, in its discretion, shall so order. In such an event the court may appoint a person deemed competent by the court.

Intestate Inheritance Rights for Adopted Children

Birth Parents in Relation to Adopted Person
Citation: Cons. Stat. Tit. 755, § 5/2-4(b), (d)
The birth parent and lineal and collateral kindred of the birth parent shall take from the adopted person and the adopted person’s kindred the property that the adopted person has taken from or through the birth parent or birth relatives by gift, will, or under intestate laws.For purposes of inheritance from or through a birth parent, an adopted child is not a child of a birth parent, nor is the child a descendant of a birth parent or of any lineal or collateral kindred of a birth parent, unless one or more of the following conditions apply:

  • The child is adopted by a descendant or a spouse of a descendant of a great-grandparent of the child, in which case the adopted child is a child of both birth parents.
  • A birth parent of the adopted child died before the child was adopted, in which case the adopted child is a child of that deceased parent and an heir of the lineal and collateral kindred of that deceased parent.
  • The contrary intent is demonstrated by the terms of the instrument by clear and convincing evidence.

Adoptive Parents in Relation to Adopted Person
Citation: Cons. Stat. Tit. 755, § 5/2-4(a), (b)
An adopted child is a descendant of the adopting parent for purposes of inheritance from the adopting parent and from the lineal and collateral kindred of the adopting parent and for the purpose of determining the property rights of any person under any instrument, unless the adopted child is adopted after age 18 and never resided with the adopting parent before age 18, in which case the adopted child is a child of the adopting parent but is not a descendant of the adopting parent for the purposes of inheriting from the lineal or collateral kindred of the adopting parent.An adopting parent and the lineal and collateral kindred of the adopting parent shall inherit property from an adopted child to the exclusion of the birth parent and the lineal and collateral kindred of the birth parent in the same manner as though the adopted child were a birth child of the adopting parent.

Adopted Persons Who Are Not Included in a Will

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

State Recognition of Intercountry Adoptions Finalized Abroad

Effect and Recognition of a Foreign Adoption Decree
Citation: 750 Ill. Comp. Stat. §§ 50/4.1(c)(8); 50/6(b)When a child is adopted in a foreign country and a final, complete, and valid order of adoption is issued in that country, as determined by both the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Justice, this State shall not impose any additional preadoption requirements. The adoptive family, however, must comply with applicable requirements of the U.S. Department of Immigration and Naturalization Service*, as provided in § 204.4 (d)(2)(ii) of title 8 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as now or hereafter amended.In the case of a child born outside the United States or a territory thereof, in addition to the investigation required under § 50/6(A), a postplacement investigation shall be conducted in accordance with the requirements of the Child Care Act of 1969 [225 ILCS 10/1, et seq.], the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children [45 ILCS 15/0.01, et seq.], and regulations of the foreign placing agency and the supervising agency.The requirements of a postplacement investigation shall be deemed to have been satisfied if a valid final order or judgment of adoption has been entered by a court of competent jurisdiction in a country other than the United States or a territory thereof with respect to such child and the petitioners.

[*As of March 1, 2003, the responsibility for providing immigration-related services was transferred from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, a bureau of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The statutes do not yet reflect this change.]

Readoption After an Intercountry Adoption

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Application for a U.S. Birth Certificate
Citation: 410 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 535/16.1

The State Registrar of Vital Records will issue a record of foreign birth for a foreign-born person who has an IR-3 visa and who was adopted under the laws of a foreign country by a State resident when it receives:

  • Evidence as to the child’s birth date and birthplace provided by the original birth certificate, or by a certified copy, extract, or translation of the original certificate, or by other document that is essentially equivalent
  • A certified copy, extract, or translation of the adoption decree or by other document that is essentially equivalent
  • A copy of the IR-3 visa
  • The name and address of the adoption agency that handled the adoption

The record of foreign birth will include:

  • The actual place and date of birth
  • The child’s name and parentage as ordered in the judgment of adoption
  • Any other necessary facts

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