110 E. Schiller Street, Suite 320, Elmhurst, IL 60126

Weiss-Kunz & Oliver, LLC312-605-4041

CHICAGO
 ⚫ PARK RIDGE
 ⚫ ELMHURST -

DuPage County Child Custody LawyerLegal matters related to child custody can become very complex from both an emotional and a legal standpoint. When parents choose to get a divorce, or when unmarried parents decide to end their relationship, they will need to make many decisions about how they will work together to raise their children, where children will live most of the time, when children will spend time with each parent, how various expenses will be handled, and multiple other issues. When a case involves mental health issues, these decisions can become even more complicated. 

If a parent has a mental illness, a substance abuse problem, or another serious issue that might affect their ability to care for their child, the court may consider these factors when making a custody determination. When mental health issues are involved in a case, parents must consider what is in the best interests of their children while also ensuring they are prepared to address their own needs and concerns. 

If you are going through a divorce, and mental health issues are a concern, it is important to understand how these issues may affect your case. At Weiss-Kunz & Oliver, LLC, our divorce and child custody attorneys can help guide you through the legal process, advocating for your children's best interests and ensuring that you take the proper steps to protect your parental rights. We can help you determine whether mental health or child custody evaluations will be appropriate, and we will advise you on the best approach to take to resolve any disputes that may arise. 

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elmhurst parenting time lawyerGetting a divorce with children can be difficult. The choice to end a couple’s marriage is likely to upend the lives of the entire family. As a couple determines how to separate various aspects of their lives, one key issue they will need to address will involve where children will primarily live and when they will spend time with each parent. Workable parenting time schedules will need to be created, and parents will also need to consider a variety of issues to ensure that they will be able to provide for their children’s best interests going forward.

While parents may be able to work together to determine how they will be able to meet their children’s needs, it is important to make sure all legal issues related to children are addressed correctly during the divorce process. To do so, a parent will want to secure representation from an attorney who has experience in these matters. The law firm of Weiss-Kunz & Oliver, LLC works to help parents resolve disputes related to their children and put agreements in place that will protect their rights. We work to ensure that our clients will be able to maintain strong relationships with their children and that they will have the resources they need as they move forward following a divorce.

Understanding Physical Custody/Parenting Time

In divorce and family law cases involving children, issues related to child custody are generally divided into two categories: legal custody and physical custody. In Illinois, legal custody is known as the allocation of parental responsibilities, and physical custody is known as parenting time. The allocation of parental responsibilities involves the right to make decisions about important aspects of children’s lives, including their education, their health and welfare, the religion they will be raised in, and the activities they will participate in. Parents may agree that they will equally share in some or all of these areas of responsibility, although depending on the family’s situation, one parent may have primary or sole responsibility in certain areas. 

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elmhurst-fathers-rights-attorney.jpgIn many family law cases, fathers feel that they need to fight against negative perceptions and stereotypes as they take steps to ensure that they can be part of their children’s lives. These stereotypes are not always unwarranted, since there are many “deadbeat dads” who fail to stay involved in their children’s lives, do not take the time and effort to spend time with their children, or refuse to meet their child support obligations. However, there are also many fathers who are closely involved in their children’s lives, playing just as important a role as mothers in caring for their kids, providing them with instruction and discipline, and ensuring that their needs are met. These fathers will want to make sure they will be able to resolve matters related to child custody in a way that will allow them to play a continuing role as a parent, make decisions about important issues, and spend quality time with their kids on a regular basis.

The attorneys of Weiss-Kunz & Oliver, LLC are dedicated to protecting the best interests of children in family law cases. For dads who are looking to make sure they will be able to share custody of their kids, we can fight to protect their fathers’ rights and help them resolve disputes successfully. We can help fathers demonstrate that they are looking out for what is best for their children, that they have played an important role in children’s lives and deserve to continue to do so in the future, and that they have the capability to meet their children’s ongoing needs. Our goal is to make sure our clients will be able to preserve important family relationships and give their kids the lives they deserve.

Understanding Child Custody in Illinois

The first thing that fathers will need to understand when addressing legal issues related to their children is what exactly is meant by “child custody.” In cases where a married couple with children chooses to get a divorce, one or both parents may believe that one of them will have primary custody, while the other will only be granted limited periods of visitation. However, while these types of arrangements may have been used in the past, the majority of parents are now able to share custody, ensuring that both mothers and fathers will play a continuing role in raising their children. 

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Elmhurst, IL Child Custody Issues AttorneyWhen divorcing spouses share children, the divorce process is much more complex – legally, financially, and personally. If you are a parent getting a divorce in Illinois, it is essential to know what to expect. By educating yourself on child custody concerns, you can prepare for these concerns in advance. The better prepared you are, the better position you will be in to make the decisions that are right for you and your family.

For help, contact a skilled divorce lawyer who understands the unique challenges parents face during divorce and how to meet these challenges head-on. Getting divorced as a parent can seem overwhelming and intimidating, but you do not have to face this situation alone. An experienced attorney can protect your rights, explore your options with you, and help you take the legal steps necessary to accomplish your child custody goals. 

Determining Child Custody 

Illinois no longer uses the term “child custody” to refer to where a child lives and how parents divide parenting authority after a divorce. In 2016, the laws regulating child custody in Illinois changed substantially. Child custody is now broken down into two main components: parental responsibilities and parenting time. However, the terms child custody and visitation are still used informally to refer to parenting obligations and will be used throughout this blog for brevity.

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IL divorce lawyerWhen you have children with another person, you will forever be connected to that person, whether you like it or not. Divorcing couples who have minor children must figure out some sort of agreement for how they will divide their parenting time and how they will allocate their parental responsibilities. Most parents will opt to agree to co-parenting, meaning you work together with your child’s other parent to raise them. However, co-parenting requires a specific degree of communication and cooperation, which not all couples have. For some high-conflict couples, a parallel parenting agreement is a much better option.

What Is Parallel Parenting?

In a normal co-parenting relationship, both parents are able to communicate and are willing to cooperate with one another as they raise their children. In some situations, however, that is not possible. Couples who have exhibited an inability to get along with one another may do better in a parallel parenting situation. Parallel parenting is similar to co-parenting, but with parallel parenting, the parents are disengaged from one another and have limited communication with one another. This style of parenting is meant to reduce the conflict between the parents and the tension that the children may feel.

Benefits of Parallel Parenting

Though it is not necessary for all couples, there can be many benefits to parallel parenting for couples who need it. The basis of parallel parenting is to reduce the amount of interaction between the parents, which in turn reduces the likelihood that you and your spouse will fight or argue in front of the children. Studies have shown that children do not respond to conflict well and can actually suffer long-term consequences if they are constantly exposed to it. In cases where parents cannot seem to get along, parallel parenting is in the best interests of the children.

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