When an unmarried or divorced parent discovers he or she is going to have to move because of a job or some other important event in their lives, what happens next with respect to the allocation of parenting time and decision-making authority could be just as critical as when child custody and parenting time were first decided.
Like other states, Illinois has laws in place that govern under what terms a single parent who is the primary caregiver of his or her children can move his or her family. These rules are in place to make sure the other parent gets treated fairly, as a move could affect that other's parent's parenting time with the children, as well as his or her overall relationship with them.
A previous post here talked about under what circumstances it might be appropriate for a Chicago resident to mediate a child custody issue. As that post said, while in most cases mediation is a good way to head off an emotionally draining custody conflict, it is not always the best option for every circumstance.
There are a lot of people in the Chicago area and around the country who promote domestic mediation of some sort as the best possible way to resolve a child custody or parenting time issue. Among other things, promoters argue that children adjust to the fact that their parents do not live together best when the couple is at least willing to stay out of court and get along as to matters that affect their children.
One of the most contentious issues during the process of a divorce is child custody. While all parents want what is best for their child, it is not uncommon for there to be major disagreements between parents as to what is actually in a child's best interest.
It is important for divorcing parents in Waukegan to understand that the divorce process can be difficult on a child, even if the divorce is an amicable one. Following a divorce, a child needs to have a good sense of security. A well thought out child custody and visitation plan can provide the child with the stability he or she needs going forward. Therefore, parenting plans should be both in the best interests of the child and of the parents.
It is only natural that both a child's parents will want to play an active role in the upbringing of their child, even after a divorce. This means that oftentimes both parents in Illinois are awarded parenting time. However, what if, during one parent's parenting time, that parent must leave the child in the care of another for an extended period of time? The other parent may not feel it is fair to have a third-party care for his or her child, even if that time is not his or her normal parenting time. This is when the "right of first refusal" comes into play.
Child custody disputes in Illinois are often contentious and difficult with emotions and other factors coming into the process. This is particularly true when the case involves grandparents' rights and one of the child's parents has died. Making certain to protect fathers' and mothers' rights as well as the rights of other relatives can be one of the most important parts of a child custody case. For that, having legal help is a key factor.
When parents in Illinois are in dispute over child custody or other factors involved with the child's care, there are many underlying issues that must be taken into account. It is not simply about which parent will have the child when and how this will be navigated and settled. Certain portions of the agreement are inherent as to how the child will be cared for and if the best interests of the child are met. Included in that are the caretaking functions of the parent. Knowing what is entailed in these caretaking functions and, particularly, if they are not being met, is a key factor in the case.
One of the most important aspects of child custody in Illinois is that the child is properly cared for by both parents. It is in the best interests of the child that this be adhered to, and the law is clear on what entails "caretaking functions" when the child is in the home of one parent or the other. The term means that there are tasks that require the parent and child to interact, or that there be arrangements, supervision or direction with the child and for care others can provide. Thus, it is important to know what is included in caretaking functions.