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9 Factors That Affect Child Custody in an Illinois Divorce

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled---2023-09-07T141850.796.jpgFor parents, many of the most important issues to resolve during the divorce process will be related to child custody. In Illinois, the court's top concern when making decisions about child custody is the best interests of the child. That is, the court’s rulings about how parents will make decisions for their children and the schedules for when children will spend parenting time with each parent will be based on what the court believes are the best ways to promote the children’s well-being and development. There are a number of factors that will be considered in these cases. Parents who are working to resolve child custody issues can get legal help from an attorney who can advise them on the best ways to show that they can provide for their children’s best interests.

Factors That May Affect Children’s Best Interests

Illinois law lists a large number of factors that may be evaluated by family court judges in child custody cases. These include:

  1. The wishes of both parents: The court will consider each parent's desires about how child custody issues should be handled. However, if the wishes of parents are not related to what is in the best interest of their child, these wishes may be disregarded.

  2. The wishes of the child: Depending on how old children are and how well they are able to express themselves, a judge may consider their desires about where they want to live and how other child custody issues should be handled.

  3. The relationship between each parent and their children: Parent/child relationships are important, and when judges make decisions about child custody, they will usually try to preserve strong family bonds and ensure that positive relationships can be maintained.

  4. The parents’ history of making decisions and providing care for children: A judge will look at how involved each parent has been in their children's lives, and they will often try to find solutions that will allow parents to maintain a similar level of involvement going forward.

  5. The mental and physical health of all parties involved: Any health concerns that could affect a parent's ability to care for their children may be considered.

  6. The adjustments children may need to make to their home, school, community, and daily routines: Stability can help children make the transitions children experience during a divorce easier. A judge may look at how changes in child custody may impact a child’s life on multiple levels.

  7. The ability of the parents to cooperate: A judge will look at how well the parents can communicate, cooperate, and co-parent effectively.

  8. The child's relationship with siblings or other family members: Maintaining strong family relationships can be crucial for children’s emotional well-being. A judge may look at how willing each parent is to encourage these relationships.

  9. Domestic violence: If there have been any claims of child abuse or other forms of violence in a household, a judge may decide to place restrictions on a parent’s child custody rights. The safety and well-being of children is a crucial issue.

It is important to note that no single factor carries more weight than any other in Illinois family courts. Each case is unique, and judges will weigh these and other factors as they make decisions about parental responsibilities and parenting time.

Contact an Experienced Kane County Child Custody Lawyer

If you are facing a child custody dispute in Kane County, the experienced St. Charles family law attorneys at Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC are here to help. We can provide guidance on how best to proceed during your case, and we can help you demonstrate that you can provide for your children’s best interests. Contact us today at 630-665-7300 to schedule your consultation.

Source:  https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=8300000&SeqEnd=10000000

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