Illinois residents involved with raising a child may benefit from learning more about how the state determines if an individual is unfit to be a parent. There are several conditions that may compel family courts to consider an individual unfit for parenting. It may be worth noting that individuals who relinquished a child within the parameters established under the Abandoned Newborn Protection Act may not be considered unfit.

However, people who have abandoned a newborn at the hospital, or in any setting where the individual seemingly relinquishes their parenting rights, may be considered unfit. According to family courts in Illinois, abandoning a child in almost any circumstance indicates that an individual is unfit to parent. State laws also describe individuals who have failed to maintain responsibilities, concern or interest regarding the child as being unfit as well.

Deserting a child for more than three months may also cause the court’s to consider an individual to be unfit for parenting. Any type of substantial neglect that is continuous or repeated, which results in a child’s death, may also constitute grounds for classifying someone as being unfit to parent. Failing to protect a child from the risk of injury or dangers within their own environment might also prove someone unfit to parent. Evidence of physical abuse on at least two occasions can also designate an individual as unfit for parenting.

Court proceedings pertaining to divorce, adoption or other family law issues typically center on choosing a course of action that is in the best interest of the child. Parents and guardians who want to understand more about the rights and expectations concerning the legal parent-child relationship, child custody, child support or other aspect of the parenting plan may benefit from contacting a family law attorney.

Source: FAMILIES, ‘(750 ILCS 50/) Adoption Act”, Illinois General Assembly

Source: Illinois General Assembly, “FAMILIES“, November 17, 2014