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Child Custody/Visitation

How Your Live-In Companion May Impact Your Custody Case

Courts award child custody based on the best interests of the children. While having a live-in companion does not disqualify parents from winning custody of their children, the companion is another factor the court must consider. Live-in relationships should be factored into the divorce settlement … [...]

Misbehaving? It Could Impact Your Custody Case

An allegation of misbehavior or non-traditional conduct is not enough to show that a parent is unfit. To establish parental misconduct, the behavior must result in a lack of proper care for the children or negatively impact the parent-child relationship. Parental Misconduct and Loss of … [...]

Do You Have a Parenting Plan for the Holidays?

Parenting and custody disputes during holiday seasons disrupt families and are emotionally upsetting to children. A detailed parenting plan that includes provisions for the holidays can ease the stress on children and eliminate parental disputes. Holiday Disputes Increase Anxiety While spouses … [...]

Illinois Orders of Protection: What About the Kids?

Orders of protection may name children and other family members to safeguard them from physical harm or other abuse by a family member. When necessary to protect a child, courts may also grant temporary emergency custody to a petitioner to care for the minor until the full court hearing can … [...]

Guide to Child Custody for Unwed Parents in Illinois

Unwed parents do not always share equal rights of custody and parenting. Parentage must be established to support custody rights or claims of responsibility for support. Questions of Custody and Responsibility The rise in the number of unwed parents has raised questions about parental custody rights … [...]

Parenting Plans: When the Other Parent Is Unfit

Proving that a parent is unfit to retain custody of their children is often difficult and requires more than disagreement with a marital partner about parenting. Understanding of the criteria courts use is essential in establishing that a parent is unfit. The Best Interests of Children Courts … [...]

Is Playing Hardball Really in Your Child’s Best Interest?

Hardball negotiation tactics and attempts to undermine the other parent’s credibility when resolving child custody disputes can affect the well-being of children. An open mind and willingness to seek solutions that are in the best interests of the children are the keys to successful and healthy … [...]

Getting Divorced? Your Kids Have Rights Too

The American Association of Matrimonial Lawyers established the Children's Bill of Rights in 1998 to remind parents that they have an obligation to consider their kids' needs as they work through the divorce process with their child custody attorney. An equitable divorce agreement respects the … [...]

When the Custody Order Is No Longer in Your Child’s Best Interest

Situations change and what was in the best interest of a child years ago may not be feasible today, which is why child custody orders can be amended as life moves forward. When a substantial change in circumstances occurs, the courts will consider modifying child custody orders to protect the … [...]

Getting it Right with a Guardian Ad Litem

Courts often appoint a Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) to represent the best interests of children in a child custody case and providing timely and accurate information without offering more than necessary is the best way to protect parental rights. Guardian Ad Litem Represents the Children Under … [...]