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Wakenight & Associates, P.C.

9405 Bormet Drive, Suite 7, Mokena, IL 60448

Mokena | 815-727-6144

DuPage County | 630-852-9700   Oak Park | 708-848-3159

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Mokena Child Custody Lawyer

Lockport divorce lawyer for child custody disputes

Divorce Attorneys For the Allocation of Parental Responsibilities in New Lenox and Will County

During your divorce, concerns about how you and your ex-spouse will share responsibility for your children is likely to be one of your primary concerns. However, this is just one aspect of your divorce case. When you are struggling with worries about your finances, your living situation, and the legal issues you will need to resolve, it may seem like you are being buried in an avalanche of problems. That is why it is essential to have an experienced attorney on your side as you seek to resolve issues related to your children.

At Wakenight & Associates, P.C., our lawyers have been working in the area of family law for a combined total of more than 95 years. We understand the overwhelming nature of the divorce process, and we will answer your questions and address your concerns while working to reach a resolution that protects your children's best interests.

Illinois Divorce Laws and Parental Responsibility

While most people refer to the right to make decisions about children's upbringing as "child custody," Illinois law uses the term "allocation of parental responsibilities" to describe these matters. Instead of granting sole custody to one parent or joint custody to both parents, the law defines four areas of decision-making responsibility, each of which can be allocated to one parent or shared between parents:

  1. Healthcare - The right to choose the doctors children will see and make decisions about the medical, dental, and mental health treatment they receive.
  2. Education - The right to decide where children will attend school and whether they will receive any tutoring or additional education.
  3. Religion - The right to choose the church children will attend and make decisions about their religious training or education.
  4. Extracurricular activities - The right to make decisions about sports, clubs, or other activities that children will participate in.

When determining how parental responsibilities and parenting time will be divided during a divorce case, parents are encouraged to work together to reach a settlement and create a mutually agreeable parenting plan. They may do so by negotiating between themselves or through their attorneys or by using divorce mediation. However, this can be difficult to accomplish in some cases, particularly in high-conflict divorces involving parental alienation.

If parents are unable to reach a decision between themselves about parental responsibility, the final decision may be left up to the court. In these cases, a judge will base their decisions on what is in the children's best interests. Illinois law identifies a variety of factors that a judge should consider, including:

  • The wishes of the parents and the children (if children are mature enough to express their preferences) and the needs of the children
  • The physical and mental health of the parents, children, and any other relevant parties
  • Parents' ability to cooperate with each other when making child-related decisions
  • Each parent's previous level of participation in decision-making for children
  • Each parent's willingness and ability to encourage children to have a close, ongoing relationship with the other parent
  • Whether there will be any difficulty transporting children between the parents' homes
  • Whether any domestic violence or abuse has occurred or there are any threats to children's safety when in the care of a parent

Contact an Orland Park Child Custody Attorney

Decisions about how responsibility for your children will be handled are one of the most important aspects of your divorce case. The attorneys of Wakenight & Associates, P.C. can provide you with the confidence that your children's best interests will be protected as you work to reach a resolution to your divorce. To learn more about how we can help you address these issues, contact us to schedule a free consultation by calling 815-727-6144. From our Mokena office, we serve clients throughout the area including Orland Park, Joliet, Homer Glen, Frankfort, New Lenox and Tinley Park.

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