Adoption laws can get weird and specific but there's one in Illinois that might surprise you.

Adoption is a great route to go for many couples who are older, struggle to have their own kids, or maybe they've decided that's just the route of parenthood they want to follow. Adopting a kid is a hard process that could take you anywhere from 3-6 months to do, according to Adopt US Kids.

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Defining Adulthood, Legally

Most of us know that 18 is considered the age where a person becomes an "adult" (although there's still a lot of mental maturing that comes after that age). Most countries agree that 18 is the cutoff age for adulthood. It's when kids can move out of mom and dad's house, since their parents are no longer responsible for providing care for them.

So anything under 18 is considered a kid and of course we know they can be adopted.

Illinois's Adoption Law

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In the case of Illinois, people 18 and older, who are considered legal adults, can be adopted.

But. Like with most things adoption-related, it's complicated.

Illinois law says that a person 18 or older can only be adopted by someone who meets one of two criteria. They have to be adopted by a relative, like a step-parent, grandparent, cousin, aunt, uncle, or their sibling. Or, a person 18 or older can be adopted by someone that they have lived with for two consecutive years, according to an Illinois law firm.

The process for adopting an adult is significantly less involved than adopting a kid. You have to file a petition with the county court for an adult adoption and have the adoptee's approval. That's it. Unlike with adopting a kid, there's no home inspection and parental consent.

You can peruse the lengthy specifics of Illinois's adoption laws on the state's website.

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