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How is Child Custody Determined in Illinois Divorce Cases?

Posted on in Child Custody

DuPage County parenting time lawyerDivorce is never easy for anyone, but it can be particularly stressful when a couple has children and they intend to divorce. With children comes a slew of extra issues and arrangements you must agree upon before you can finalize your divorce.

Illinois courts require that you and your spouse have a parenting plan filed with the court before you can finalize your divorce to your spouse. A parenting plan is a document that outlines both significant decision-making responsibilities and parenting time (which is now the term used for child custody). Coming to an agreement on child-related issues can be stressful and sometimes a judge must step in to settle disagreements.

Factors for Consideration

Before a judge steps in and begins allocating parenting time, the parents are encouraged to come up with a parenting time plan on their own. This both increases the likelihood that both parents will stick to the plan, but it also helps foster cooperation and communication between the parents. 

If the parents cannot come to an agreement on their own or through the help of mediation, then a judge will allocate parenting time. A judge will consider the following factors when making these determinations:

  • The wishes of each parent;
  • The wishes of the child, within reason;
  • The amount of time each parent spent performing caretaking functions for the child in the past two years;
  • The interaction of the child with each parent and siblings;
  • How the child is adjusting to his or her home, school and community;
  • The mental and physical health of both the parents and the child;
  • The child’s needs;
  • Whether a restriction on parenting time is warranted;
  • The distance between the parents’ residences and the ability of each parent to cooperate with the child’s arrangements;
  • The willingness of each parent to place the child’s needs before his or her own;
  • The ability and willingness of each parent to facilitate a close and continuing relationship between the child and the other parent;
  • Whether there is a threat of harm or physical violence toward the child at each parent’s residence; and
  • Any other factor that the judge deems to be relevant.

Contact a DuPage County Parenting Time Attorney Today

Child-centered issues tend to be some of the most disputed issues in Illinois divorces. If you are getting a divorce and you need help creating a parenting plan, get in touch with our skilled Wheaton, IL parenting time attorneys today. At the Goostree Law Group, we can help you and your spouse come up with a plan that you both agree with. If that is not possible, we will advocate for you and your child’s best interests in court. Call our office today at 630-364-4046 to schedule a free consultation.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs5.asp?ActID=2086&ChapterID=59

 

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