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Illinois state employees have support for adoption

According to the Illinois Department of Central Management Services, the state employee benefit package provides support for those employees who want to expand their families through adoption. This program encourages employees to adopt and benefits children who have been waiting to join a family for a long time.

Who are the employees eligible for this adoption benefit program? All employees who are covered by the state employee group insurance program are eligible for adoption benefit. Even employees who have opted out of dental, health and vision coverage are eligible for expense reimbursement through the adoption benefit program. The only requirement is that the adoption process must be completed before any reimbursements are made. If both prospective parents are state employees, then only one reimbursement is provided.

Currently, many children living in foster homes in Illinois are awaiting adoption. Illinois is supporting the adoption process by providing this benefit program. Children, who are waiting to be adopted, fall into four categories: children who are 3 years or older, children who have emotional or physical disability, children who must be adopted along with siblings or foreign children who are 3 years or older.

The adoption program provides a payment of $1,500 for a child already in foster care or $1,000 for any other child. These benefits are subject to Social Security taxes. Reimbursements can be taken for court fees, legal fees, medical examination fees of the child and initial immunization, among other things. Cost of transportation for bringing a foreign child to the United States is also covered. The benefit program does not cover expenses for adoption of stepchildren.

Source: Illinois Department of Central Management Services, "Adoption Benefit Program," accessed on Aug. 5, 2014

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