In Illinois, the court is mandated to decide child custody matters in accordance with the best interest of the child. As your family is unique, we work with you to create the special solutions that may be necessary to alleviate your specific concerns. Relevant factors the court may consider include: the wishes of the child and the parents; the interaction between the parents; the child’s adjustment to home and community; the mental and physical health of the parents; the mental and physical health of the child; and the willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child, to name a few. It is presumed a child’s best interests are met when the child is in the custody of a biological parent but a stepparent seeking child custody may rebut that presumption under limited circumstances.
Child custody arrangements are addressed at the commencement of a cause. This time can be stressful to parents whom are still in an anger state with respect to the divorce. If work schedules, school schedules and the children’s sport schedules collide, the solutions may be complex. The court may enter an order requiring the parties seek the assistance of a Mediator. If mediation is unsuccessful and a decision cannot be made between the parents, the Court may order a Children’s Representative or Guardian Ad Litem to represent the child(ren), as well as order an evaluation by a competent mental health professional.
We are sensitive to parents concerns and understands that each case involves a huge life transition for our client. As parenting plans will have lifelong implications for you and your children, we seriously and compassionately respect our role as your adviser and advocate.