If you are facing a divorce, your children’s ongoing health, happiness, and well-being are probably one of your top priorities. Further, obtaining child custody arrangements that support your children’s unique needs and that work for you as a family is paramount. Because your child custody arrangements are so critical to you and your children’s future, working with an experienced child custody attorney in Chicago is in the best interest of you and your children.
Custody in the State of Illinois is divided into two distinct categories – one of which is legal custody. Legal custody refers to a parent’s rights and responsibilities as they relate to making important decisions on behalf of their children. These decisions can include all of the following:
Except under extreme circumstances, courts generally find that it is most appropriate for both parents to share legal custody.
The other category of custody is physical custody, and this refers to with whom the children live. Generally, both parents share physical custody. Typically, however, one parent will become the primary custodial parent (with whom the children primarily live), and the other parent will have a visitation schedule. The courts believe that it is in the best interest of nearly all children to spend ample time with both parents (except under extreme circumstances), so parents generally share physical custody.
Your custody arrangement will be delineated in your Illinois parenting plan. This will outline exactly when you will have the children and when they will be with their other parent. It will spell out where and when who picks up whom and will provide you with a snapshot of whom the children will be with at any given time. Additionally, your parenting plan will advise you regarding who the children will be with on their own birthdays, on you and your spouse’s birthdays, and on the various holidays throughout the year.
The fact is that the custody arrangements that you agree to at the time of your divorce may work perfectly at that time, but your children’s custody needs are not static – and you may need to address modifications as time goes by. As your children require less supervision and more transportation services, for example, a custody modification may be in order. Further, as your children reach the age of 14, Illinois allows them to voice their opinion on the matter of whom they live with. The court has discretion, however, and need not adhere to a child’s wishes if it deems them to be detrimental to the child’s best interests.
Your child custody arrangements are naturally a primary concern of yours. The dedicated child custody attorneys atThe Law Offices of George M. Sanders – proudly serving Chicago – have extensive experience helping clients like you obtain arrangements that work for them and their children. Your rights are important, so please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information today.