The unfortunate reality across the country is that couples continue to end their marriages. Divorce is a major decision that requires careful thought and consideration. There are several layers to address, including financial and property assets. But one of the biggest issues couples face are the arrangements to be put in place for any children of the relationship. In 2010, an estimated 13.7 million parents had custody of 22 million children under the age of 21, while the other parent lived somewhere else.
Obtaining the correct legal advice is of utmost importance to ensure the interests of your children are a priority. A child custody lawyer with experience in divorce and custody matters will be able to advise you accordingly. Serving the needs of your children is an area which if navigated successfully, can avoid lengthy, stressful or even stalled negotiations.
Types Custody Arrangements
Legal custody means the right of a parent or guardian to make major life decisions as it relates to their children. This can include matters of education, healthcare, and religious upbringing. Physical custody refers to the decision of which parent or guardian the child lives with. In Illinois, either one or both parents may have legal and/or physical custody.
Sole or joint custody may also be an option depending on a particular family’s situation. Under Illinois law (750 ILCS 5/602.1b) the state gives either or both parents the right to apply for joint custody in a divorce or separation. An approved joint parenting agreement will outline each parents’ rights and responsibilities. In the event a parent individually seeks sole custody, the court can order that the sole custodian has the say pertaining to major life decisions and upbringing. This is not to say the other parent does not have access to their child, rather, visitation rights may be set in place.
When seeking custody, a level of conciliatory mediation between parents is needed to serve the best interests of the children involved. Coming to an agreement of how the children will be cared for and the manner in which they will be raised are areas a skilled custody attorney will know to address. With the new year comes the enactment of new laws which could impact your case. An experienced attorney will be aware of these and alert you to any that could further your case.
Dedicated Legal Assistance
Retaining an experienced DuPage County child custody attorney gives you the best chance for a thorough custody agreement that serves everyone fairly. An attorney with a proven track record in this area will be able to advise you on current legal considerations and any new legislation that might aid your case. The best interests of you children must prevail and Mulyk Laho Law, LLC have committed and compassionate lawyers who can guide you through this process, which many times, can be a stressful and emotional process. With offices throughout DuPage County, our firm is the child custody lawyers of choice.