The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.


1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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When Can Parental Rights Be Terminated in an Illinois Divorce?

Posted on in Parental Rights

North Aurora Parental Rights Attorney

When a child is born to parents in Illinois, the mother automatically receives her parental rights. The father, however, is a different story if the parents were not married when the child was born. Paternity must be established for a child if the father wants parental rights. This can be done in a variety of ways, though the most common way is for a couple to fill out a voluntary acknowledgment of paternity (VAP) form in the hospital. In some cases, however, a parent may wish to relinquish their parental rights to a child. In other cases, a parent may wish to terminate the other parent’s parental rights. Either way, this can be done under certain circumstances in Illinois.

Proving the Parent to Be Unfit

In order to proceed with petitioning the court to terminate a parent’s parental rights, you must first have proof that the parent is indeed unfit. During the hearing, which is bound to happen, the judge will determine whether or not there is enough evidence pointing toward the parent that would declare him unfit. According to Illinois law, a parent can be considered unfit if:

  • The parent abandons the child

  • The parent failed to demonstrate reasonable interest or concern about the child

  • The parent performed continuous and repeated acts of neglect

  • The parent performed extreme and repeated cruelty to the child

  • The parent fails to protect the child from dangerous conditions

  • The parent is convicted of certain crimes

  • The parent is financially able to provide the child with food, toys, and shelter, yet does not

  • The child is in the temporary custody of Social Services and their parent is in jail

  • The child’s bodily substances while in the hospital after birth contained a controlled substance

Our Compassionate Geneva, IL Parental Rights Attorney is Here to Help

It can be extremely scary if you are threatened with losing your parental rights. It can also be extremely frustrating if you believe that your child’s other parent should not have parental rights. Terminating parental rights is a serious process, which is why you should hire a knowledgeable Kane County parental rights lawyer. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we can help you fight to keep your parental rights, as well as help you petition to terminate parental rights from your child’s other parent. To schedule a consultation, call our office today at 630-409-8184.




The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.


1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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