Deciding Child Custody: What’s in your Child’s Best Interest?

 Posted on February 19, 2014 in Kane County divorce attorney

child custody 176662431During a divorce, children of the marriage may be used as pawns between the warring factions. If the divorce is amicable, the parties can work together to find a just and harmonious resolution to the issue of child custody. If not, however, the the process of determining child custody can complicate divorce proceedings, and the best interest of the child may be thrown to the wayside. It takes the experienced negotiation skills of attorneys or the intervention of the courts to determine custody.

What to Consider

The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, found at 750 ILCS 5, sets forth the conditions for child custody proceedings. There are established rules for when a stepparent can file a petition for custody. There are even rules that set forth the circumstances under which a grandparent can petition for custody.

For their part, the Illinois lawmakers have even established some factors to which courts are to look in determining the best interest of the child. Those factors can be found at 750 ILCS 5/602. Absent the possibilities that one of the parents is continually incarcerated or a sex offender, the court will look to the following:

  • The wishes of the parents;
  • The wishes of the child;
  • The relationship between the child and each of the parents;
  • The child’s adjustment to the home, school, and community; and
  • The mental and physical well-being of all involved.

The above-mentioned factors are obviously not all inclusive; they represent the minimum factors to be considered. If your child is old enough to understand what is happening to his parents, then perhaps they are old enough for you to simply ask them what they would want.

Psychology Today offers a suggestion that parents engage their children and empower them to make their own decision. It is further suggested that parents avoid an emotional response when the child or children make their decision. Their decision does not reflect negatively on you as a parent, but rather the decision may be based on outside factors which you will not know unless you talk to your child.

Legal Help

If you or someone you know is contemplating divorce, or if you have already initiated divorce proceedings, do not let the child or children fall victim to the animosity that divorce often creates. Contact an experienced Illinois family and divorce law attorney who understands child custody and the issues faced by all those involved. The Professionals at Goostree Law Group, can provide the assistance you need. Call today 630-584-4800 for a free and confidential conversation with an attorney.

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