Although the process of divorce can quickly become contentious, with high stakes in assets and property divvyed between the separating partners, those splits involving children must, by necessity, take on a marked degree of cooperation as well. In fact, the state of Illinois itself takes specific action in divorces between parents, working to ensure that young children are properly cared for during and after separation.
Across Illinois, judges presiding over divorce cases typically require that parents, if their children are still minors, must complete a course in specific parenting education. The program, which is required in addition to child support and custody provisions, is designed to alert parents of the effects a divorce might have on their children and better prepare them to maintain a caring, stable environment throughout the entire process.
Now, some Chicago-area residents will be able to attend their parenting education classes online. In the past, residents of Cook County were forced to take classes in person through a familiar classroom setting. That changed earlier this month, with the introduction of online courses that fulfill the same court-ordered program.
A predominant motivation for the introduction of online classes was convenience. The move will, for some, eliminate the need for parents to miss work or find a sitter for children in order to make it to a classroom. Still, this move does not mean the classes and the information they convey are any less important. One Cook County chief judge reasserted their goal, which is to "help families going through child custody proceedings to achieve positive outcomes.
Illinois's parenting education course is one of the many reminders that a divorce process is about more than simply the division of money and determination of which spouse keeps what. Doing what's best for children necessitates careful planning and negotiation of child custody and possible support payments. A family law attorney can help make this key process as clear and comprehensive as possible.
Source: Chicago Tribune, "Those in divorce proceedings in Cook County can take court-ordered parenting classes online," Nov. 14, 2012
Our firm works with couples through all aspects of the divorce and child custody process. For more information, contact our Libertyville, Illinois, practice by visiting the child custody page of our website.