Issue: Under Illinois law, should a petition for adoption be dismissed for flagrant failure to comply with the requirements of the Adoption Act and the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act?
|Area of Law:||Family Law|
|Keywords:||Petition for adoption; Requirements of the Adoption Act; Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act|
|Cited Statutes:||750 ILCS 50/0.01 et seq.; 750 ILCS 35/1 et seq.; 750 ILCS 50/5(B)(b); 750 ILCS 50/5(B)(d); 750 ILCS 50/5(B)(k); 750 ILCS 35/3.03; 750 ILCS 35/3.02; 750 ILCS 35/10|
On its face a Petition must comply with the very clear requirements for such documents set forth in the Illinois Adoption Act, 750 ILCS 50/0.01 et seq. Likewise, it must also conform to the requirements of the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act (UCCJA), 750 ILCS 35/1 et seq.
Section 5 of the Adoption Act unambiguously and concisely sets forth the required contents of a petition for adoption. In a proceeding to adopt a related child, the petition must contain, among other information, “the place of residence of the petitioners and length of residence of each in the State of Illinois immediately preceding the filing of the petition.” 750 ILCS 50/5(B)(b) (emphasis added). The statute also mandates that the place of birth of the subject minors be stated in the petition, 750 ILCS 50/5(B)(d).
Most significant, is the need to supply information concerning “[w]hatever orders, judgments or decrees have heretofore been entered by any court affecting (1) adoption or custody of the child, or (2) the adoptive, custodial or parental rights of either petitioner.” 750 ILCS 50/5(B)(k) (emphasis added).
Adoption is the ultimate custody determination. A “custody proceeding” as defined under the UCCJA encompasses an adoption proceeding. The Act defines “custody proceeding” as one “in which a custody determination is one of several issues.” 750 ILCS 35/3.03. A “custody determination” is “a court decision and court orders and instructions providing for the custody of a child, including visitation rights, but . . . not . . . a decision relating to […]