As a general rule, all parents in Illinois are given the chance to be part of their children’s lives after a divorce. This is based on the idea that a child does better by having access to both parents. Furthermore, allowing both parents to be in a child’s life can reduce conflict between them. This could be beneficial for everyone in the family.
However, there is a chance that parents will engage in disputes over child custody or visitation matters. Ideally, the parents will be able to decide those issues on their own. However, if they cannot, a judge will issue an order to resolve the problem on their behalf.
Generally speaking, courts will side with the parent who has taken a leading role in some area of a child’s life. For example, a parent who has been engaged in a child’s education or medical care will usually be allowed to make decisions in those areas. Parents who are seeking the right to make decisions on a child’s behalf should document their efforts to do so in the past. Doing so can provide evidence that seeking sole or joint custody of a child is in the minor’s best interest.
A divorce can be a stressful regardless of whether a couple has children or not. Therefore, it may be a good idea to turn to an attorney for guidance throughout the process. Legal counsel could take an objective approach to a custody hearing, which may maximize a parent’s chances of obtaining a favorable outcome. However, even if an outcome is favorable to a parent, the other ex may still have rights to the child that must be respected.