For expecting parents, waiting nine months for the birth of a child can feel like a lifetime. However, adoptive parents often have to deal with especially long wait times and, unlike a pregnancy with a clearly defined due date, the finalization of an adoption is not always so clear. Illinois adoptive parents might soon find some reprieve from long wait times as the state implements a system that would speed up the process. 

Historically, adopting children outside of the state where the soon-to-be parents reside took significantly longer than in-state adoptions. However, parental love knows no bounds, and a state line might mean little to parents hoping to adopt a child. The National Electronic Interstate Compact Enterprise project hopes to speed up the process of interstate adoptions, and the project chose Illinois as one of the first several states to participate. The NEICE project hopes that this effort will not only match children with potential families in other states but that it will also reduce the time children spend in foster care.

The long wait times are mostly blamed on antiquated technology being used for transferring children’s records and data to a different state. While useful in the past when there were fewer options available, the system has apparently failed to catch up with current technology that would allow the instant transfer of records through an electronic system. According to NEICE, making the transfer as seamless as possible will knock down roadblocks between an adoptive family and a child.

Childhood is no doubt a precious time in life, and spending as much of that time as possible with a loving and caring family is important to a child’s future. However, even with new and changing technology, there is little guarantee that an adoption will go according to plan. Many adoptive parents in Illinois have found that consulting with experienced counsel along the way can help reveal potential bumps in the road and ensure the easiest process possible.

Source:, “Illinois DCFS joins program to expedite adoptions for children moving across state lines“, Greg Webb, June 8, 2015