Tag Archives: children of divorce

Resolving to Improve as a Parent for the New YearNew Year’s resolutions are about finding ways to improve yourself, with the noticeable passage of time as the impetus. If you are concerned about your deteriorating relationship with your children after your divorce or separation, you can resolve to be a better parent. You have a finite amount of time to form an emotional bond with your children while they are still at the age when they look towards you for guidance. Here are five tips that may help you improve as a parent for the new year:

  1. Increase Contact: Your children need to notice your presence in order to develop a relationship with you. You can try to increase your share of parenting time, though it may be impractical depending upon distance and schedules. There are alternatives to physical contact with your children, such as phone calls, video chats and emails. Electronic communication allows continued interaction without worrying about transportation or clearing your schedule for most of the day.
  2. Show Interest: When you are with your children, focus on activities or interaction that they want. Ask them questions about themselves and listen to what they say. Encourage them to come to you if they are worried about something and need advice or support. You will have more success trying to integrate into their lives than forcing them to do what you want.
  3. Be Persistent Yet Patient: Your children may not immediately respond to your efforts to improve your relationship, particularly if they are approaching their teenage years. They may be unfamiliar with your new attitude and unsure of how to respond. Keep trying to reach them, while figuring out which interactions are most successful. However, do not be overly aggressive. Trying too hard may drive them away.
  4. Play Nice with Your Co-Parent: If the children primarily live with the other parent, he or she will largely affect their opinion about you. Be cordial and accommodating with your former spouse, and he or she will hopefully reciprocate by encouraging your children to maintain a relationship with you. Cooperating as parents will help you both in successfully raising your children.
  5. Follow Through: The biggest problem with New Year’s resolutions is that people tend to forget about them after a couple of months. You cannot afford to do that with your children because they would feel betrayed and may never again trust you enough to have a close relationship. Once you have established a new pattern of contact and interaction, you need to continue it.

Building a Relationship

Adjusting your parenting agreement can grant you more time with your children. A Kane County family law attorney at Goostree Law Group can help you petition to modify your parenting agreement. Schedule a free consultation by calling 630-584-4800.

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St. Charles family law attorneysAny divorce proceeding can lead to serious emotional and psychological reactions by either spouse. When children are involved, however, the implications of divorce can be even more serious. Many children of divorce often struggle with their new reality and may display behavioral issues, uncontrolled anger, or symptoms of depression or anxiety. Divorced parents may be left wondering if there is anything the court can do in regard to ordering therapy or counseling and splitting the costs of such services. According to the law in Illinois, a family court can order counseling for children of divorce depending on the family’s circumstances.

Custody Evaluations

When a divorcing couple is struggling to reach an agreement regarding parenting arrangements for their child, such decisions are often left to the court. In doing so, the court has the authority to appoint an appropriate professional to conduct an evaluation of the child and each parent. These evaluations may include interviews, tests, and any other accepted methods of determining the child’s needs and his or her best interests. In addition to the court’s appointed professional, a professional retained by either parent may also conduct such an investigation at the court’s direction. The costs for such evaluations—if they are not conducted by an agency of the state—may be divided between the parties in a manner that is fair and equitable.

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Kane County family law attorneyWhen you are a divorced parent, figuring out how to divide holiday parenting time can be very difficult. It is especially challenging if you and the other parent are not able to communicate effectively. Any parent who has a healthy relationship with their child, however, will want to spend time together during important family holidays like Christmas. Doing so is possible with some advance planning and cooperation between you and your ex-spouse.

You and your former partner may already have an agreement in place regarding where your child will spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. A holiday parenting schedule is often included in a court-approved parenting plan. In many situations, parents—especially those who live relatively far from one another—will enjoy Christmas parenting time in alternating years. For example, your child may spend Christmas with you this year and, next year, he or she will spend Christmas with the other parent.

If you and the other parent live close enough, however, your child may be able to spend part of the holiday with each of you. Of course, this may be more complicated in terms of transportation and scheduling meals with extended family, but the time with your child on Christmas is worth the extra trouble.

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Kane County family law attorneyWhen a couple gets married, it is not at all uncommon for a spouse—usually a woman, but not always—to take her partner’s last name as a symbol of their union. Some partners choose to hyphenate their surnames so as to keep their own identity while adding their spouse’s name to theirs. When a marriage comes to an end, it is relatively easy—and usually part of the standard divorce paperwork—for a spouse who changed her name to change it back during the proceedings. But, what about the children of a divorcing couple? It turns out that changing the name of a minor child in Illinois may be more complicated than most people realize.

What the Law Says

While most of the legal details surrounding marriage and divorce are governed by the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (750 ILCS 5), name changes are typically made in accordance with the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure (735 ILCS 5). The statute provides that a name change for a minor child is possible if the court finds “by clear and convincing evidence that the change is necessary to serve the best interest of the child.” A separate provision in the Illinois Parentage Act of 2015 (750 ILCS 46) allows for a child’s name to be changed if both parents agree, though this law is typically utilized in cases of unmarried parents or when parentage is in question.

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Illinois child custody attorney, Illinois family law attorneyIf you have been divorced for many years, you are probably fairly comfortable navigating the world of parenting after a divorce. If you are recently divorced, you might still be trying to determine what works and what does not work in this field. Co-parenting is a collaborative effort and the decisions you and your former partner make are generally driven by your child's academic, social, and medical needs. For many Illinois families, a young adult attending college after high school is one of the events that requires careful planning and cooperation between divorced parents.

Although your son or daughter is legally an adult at this age, it is not uncommon for you and your former partner to continue to support him or her financially. In fact, there may be a clause in your divorce settlement requiring one or both of you to contribute to his or her college expenses. But even if the financial aspect of your roles as parents in your child's college education is squared away, there are other issues you need to clarify. Who will drop your child off to campus? In which home will he or she stay during school breaks? How will expenses outside tuition and fees that your child incurs be handled?

Remember, Your Child Is an Adult

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Goostree Law Group

Goostree Law Group

 555 S. Randall Road, Suite 200
St. Charles, IL 60174

 630-584-4800

 400 S. County Farm Road, Suite 300
Wheaton, IL 60187

 630-407-1777

Our Illinois divorce attorneys represent clients in Kane County, DuPage County, Kendall County and DeKalb County, including Geneva, Batavia, St.Charles, Wayne, Wasco, Elburn, Virgil, Lily Lake, Aurora, North Aurora, Elgin, South Elgin, Bartlett, Crystal Lake, Gilberts, Millcreek, Maple Park, Kaneville, LaFox, Yorkville, Oswego, Plano, Sugar Grove, Big Rock, Bristol, Newark, DeKalb, Sycamore, Naperville, Wheaton, West Chicago, Winfield, Warrenville, Downers Grove, Lombard, Oak Brook, Streamwood, Hoffman Estates, Barrington, South Barrington, Lake Barrington, Schaumburg, Big Grove, Boulder Hill, Bristol, Joliet, Kendall, Lisbon, Minooka, Montgomery, Plainfield, Sandwich, Yorkville and many other cities.

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