There are many children under the guardianship of the Illinois Department of Children and Families who are in need of a loving home. You may be willing and eager to adopt but worry about whether certain circumstances may disqualify you.
Some people mistakenly believe that factors like age or marital status may prevent them from adopting. This is often not the case. Organizations like DCFS that facilitate adoptions want to help children find families and vice versa. While they want to be sure the child will be safe and well cared for, they are not looking for perfection from prospective parents.
- You do not need to be rich to adopt
DCFS agents will ask questions about finances to be sure that you can provide for a child’s needs. However, they are not looking for a particular income level or annual figure.
Agency adoptions typically involve fees that can range into the tens of thousands of dollars. However, you do not always need to pay a fee to adopt a child. When you adopt through Illinois DCFS, you pay no fee to the department.
- Illness or disability does not automatically disqualify you
Adoption organizations ask medical questions and sometimes require physicals because they want to know how your health could affect your ability to parent, both now and in the future. However, if you have a physical disability or well-managed chronic condition, it should not affect your adoption eligibility.
- Being single should not prevent you from adopting
Generally, your marital status is less important than stability. Therefore, merely being single should not affect your eligibility to adopt, especially if you adopt through DCFS because there is no need for a birth mother to select you first.
- Older people can still adopt
Your age is not necessarily a liability in the adoption process. However, if you are adopting as a senior citizen, it may affect the age of the children that an organization is willing to place with you. DCFS may decide that, as an older adoptive parent, an older child may be a better fit for your family.