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DuPage County family law attorneysIf you are a parent, you should always want what is best for your child, even it means making certain sacrifices. The law also provides you with particular rights and responsibilities in regard to your child. In the wake of a divorce, exercising your parental rights may be especially difficult if the other parent is given the majority of the parenting time and most of the authority for decision-making. When your ex-spouse gets remarried, the challenges may become even greater, particularly if his or her new spouse expresses the desire to legally adopt your child.

A Stepparent Adoption Usually Requires Your Approval

In most situations, your ex’s new husband or wife cannot adopt your child unless you voluntarily consent to the adoption. If you agree to the adoption, you also agree have your parental rights and responsibilities regarding your child terminated. According to Illinois law, a person may have only two legal parents. As such, an adoption by a stepparent is more than a formality; it creates a legal parent-child relationship between the stepparent and your child, giving the stepparent all of the authority and responsibilities that were once yours.

It is up to you to decide whether to give your consent when a stepparent is looking to adopt your child. If you approve the proposed adoption, you relinquish your standing to ask for visitation or to make decisions about your child’s life. Depending upon the situation, your former partner and his or her new spouse may allow you to continue your relationship with your child, but once the adoption is finalized, they are under no legal obligation to do so. As far the court is concerned, you are no longer the child’s parent, regardless of what a DNA test would show.


DuPage County child support lawyersWhen a couple with children either is not married when they have the child or later gets divorced, the parent with less parental responsibility is often required to pay child support. The purpose of child support payments are to help the custodial parent, the one with a greater share of parenting time and responsibility, cover the costs associated with raising the child. The ultimate goal of support payments is to help the child enjoy the same quality of life as he or she would have enjoyed if his or her parents were together. But, what happens when a parent does not pay his or her court-order child support?

Deadbeat Parents and Child Support Nonpayment

Depending on the circumstances, nonpayment of child support can be a serious violation of a court order. Parents who simply choose not to pay their court-ordered support can be held in contempt of the court. These so-called “deadbeat” parents are regarded differently under the law than those parents who make an attempt to comply with the law but cannot afford their support payments. This is why it is imperative that parents who cannot afford their child support payments notify the court of this problem immediately.

What to Do If You Know You Cannot Make Your Child Support Payment

Section 510 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act outlines the rules for child support nonpayment. According to the law, “Support may be modified as to installments accruing subsequent to due notice by the moving party of the filing of the motion for modification.” This means that parents can petition the court to modify their child support obligation by filing a “Petition to Modify Support.” In addition to notifying the court, parents who cannot make their support payment must also notify the other parent or recipient of support.


Naperville Child Support LawyersIncarceration can change many aspects of an individual’s life and the lives of those who depend on them, especially in regard to finances. Unless a person or business agrees otherwise, monthly financial obligations remain valid, and that includes child support payments.

Once a judge orders support payments for children or spousal maintenance, it is legally enforceable and does not stop if an individual goes to jail, and the amount owed continues to accumulate. Here we will discuss the effect of incarceration on all parties and how to overcome this obstacle.

Parents Paying Child Support

Court-ordered child support payments are intended to benefit the livelihood of a child or children. Their needs do not stop if one parent is incarcerated, and therefore, the payments do not stop. They are expected to arrive in the same manner as before the detainment unless the court determines otherwise.

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