Illinois Compiled Statutes
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755 ILCS 5/11-5.5
(755 ILCS 5/11-5.5)
Special immigrant minor findings; appointment of guardian for person aged 18 to 21 years; duties of guardian; additional services.
(a) For the purpose of making a finding under this Section:
"Abuse" has the meaning ascribed to that term in
subsection (1) of Section 103 of the Illinois Domestic Violence Act of 1986.
"Abandonment" includes, but is not limited to, the
failure of a parent to maintain a reasonable degree of interest, concern, or responsibility for the welfare of the minor or when one or both of the minor's parents are deceased or cannot be reasonably located.
"Neglect" includes the meaning ascribed to the term
in paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of Section 2-3 of the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 and the failure to perform caretaking functions as defined in subsection (c) of Section 600 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act.
(b) A court of this State that is competent to adjudicate a petition for guardianship has jurisdiction to make the findings necessary to enable a minor, who is the subject of a petition for guardianship, to petition the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services for classification as a Special Immigrant Juvenile under Section 1101(a)(27)(J) of Title 8 of the United States Code.
(c) If a motion requests findings regarding Special Immigrant Juvenile Status under Section 1101(a)(27)(J) of Title 8 of the United States Code, and the evidence, which may consist solely of, but is not limited to, a declaration by the minor, supports the findings, the court shall issue an order, that includes the following findings:
(1)(A) the minor is declared a dependent of the
court; or (B) the minor is legally committed to, or placed under the custody of, a State agency or department or an individual or entity appointed by the court; and
(2) that reunification of the minor with one or both
of the minor's parents is not viable due to abuse, neglect, abandonment, or other similar basis; and
(3) that it is not in the best interest of the minor
to be returned to the minor's or parent's previous country of nationality or last habitual residence.
(d) In any proceedings in response to a motion that the court make the findings necessary to support a petition for classification as a Special Immigrant Juvenile, information regarding the immigration status of the minor, the minor's parent, or the minor's guardian that is not otherwise protected by State confidentiality laws shall remain confidential and shall be available for inspection only by the court, the minor who is the subject of the proceeding, the parties, the attorneys for the parties, the minor's counsel, and the minor's parent or guardian.
(e)(1) For purposes of this subsection, "minor" includes an unmarried person who is less than 21 years old who consents to the appointment of a guardian or the continuation of a guardianship after the age of 18.
(2) A court making determinations under this subsection shall consider the best interest of the minor, including his or her protection, well-being, care, and custody. The court shall make decisions regarding findings, orders, or referrals to support the health, safety, and welfare of a minor or to remedy the effects on a minor of abuse, neglect, abandonment, or similar circumstances. A court making determinations under this subsection shall be acting as a juvenile court.
(3) A petition for guardianship of the person of a minor who is 18 years of age or older, but who has not yet attained 21 years of age, may be filed by a parent, relative, or nonrelative person over the age of 21.
(4) With the consent of the minor, the court shall appoint the petitioner as the guardian of the person for a minor who is 18 years of age or older, but who has not yet attained 21 years of age, in connection with a motion for special findings under this Section.
(5) At the request of, or with the consent of, the minor, the court shall extend an existing guardianship of the person for a minor over 18 years of age, for purposes of allowing the minor to request special findings under this Section.
(6) A guardian appointed pursuant to this subsection shall have responsibility for the custody, nurture, and tuition of the minor, and shall have the right to determine the minor's residence based on the minor's best interest. This subsection does not authorize the guardian to abrogate certain rights that a person who has attained 18 years of age may have under State law, including, but not limited to, decisions regarding the minor's medical treatment without the minor's express consent.
(7) A minor who is the subject of a petition for guardianship or for extension of guardianship under this subsection may be referred for psychological, educational, medical, or social services that may be deemed necessary as a result of parental abuse, abandonment, or neglect, or for protection against trafficking or domestic violence. Participation in any referred services shall be voluntary.
(Source: P.A. 101-121, eff. 11-25-19 (see P.A. 101-592 for the effective date of changes made by P.A. 101-121); 102-259, eff. 8-6-21.)