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Tips for Unmarried Fathers in Illinois

Imagine finding out the mother of your child placed the child up for adoption without your knowledge. This happens to fathers all across Illinois every year. The first, and easiest, step to prevent this from happening to you is to register with the Illinois Putative Father Registry.

Registration can be completed online or by mail, and you may register prior to the child's birth. If you have registered with Putative Father Registry, you will receive notice of any adoption, and the ability to contest the adoption in court. If you fail to register, an adoption could proceed without any notice to you.

If you have the opportunity when your child is born, you should complete a Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity (VAP). These forms are available at the hospital. The benefit of completing a VAP is it establishes you as the legal father of the child. Make sure you get a copy of the VAP to present in count

Keep in mind that a VAP does not give you any other rights to the child. You will not receive any parenting time unless the other parent agrees, or you obtain a court order.

Even if you have a good relationship with the child's other parent, it is best to establish your paternity and parental responsibilities in court. You may file a paternity action at any time, even

Fathers are important in every child's life. If you want to make sure you have the best opportunity to be a part of your child's life, contact Jamie to schedule a consultation to discuss all of your options.

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