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

Weiss-Kunz & Oliver, LLC312-605-4041

CHICAGO
 ⚫ PARK RIDGE
 ⚫ ELMHURST -

IL divorce lawyerDivorcing with children is an entirely different situation than if you did not have children. Having children when you get a divorce means you have to deal with a different set of concerns and make even more decisions than if you did not have children. Parents often know how a divorce will affect themselves, but what they worry about is how the divorce will affect their children.

The effects that a divorce has on children manifests differently in each child. Some children may be minimally affected, while other children will have a harder time coping with the stress of the divorce. Getting a divorce does not mean that it will have lasting effects on your children, as long as you are able to help your children through the process. To do this, you must be able to recognize signs that your child is having difficulty coping.

Changes in Sleeping Patterns or Behaviors

When a child has difficulty handling stress in their lives, this can often manifest in a range of sleeping issues. Your child’s sleeping patterns may change. They may have difficulty getting to sleep or staying asleep. Younger children might regress to behaviors such as wetting the bed or wanting a pacifier. Night terrors are also common in younger children who cannot cope with stress. Older children may exhibit an increased need for sleep or they may not sleep enough.

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois parenting time and responsibilities lawyer,Divorce can be complicated on its own, but adding children into the mix can complicate things further. When you get a divorce and you and your ex have children together, you will almost always split decision-making responsibilities and parenting time with them if it is left to the courts to decide. The courts will encourage you and your ex to work together to create parenting plans, but in the event you and your spouse cannot work together, Illinois family courts will intervene and it will be left to a judge to determine what is in the best interests of the children. Sometimes, a parent may believe that what is best for their child is for the other parent to play no part in their life. In cases like these, will the court issue an order to restrict parenting time?

Petitioning the Court for Parenting Time Restrictions

In an effort to be fair to all parents, the court begins its determinations from a place of neutrality. The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) specifically states that “It is presumed that both parents are fit and the court shall not place any restrictions on parenting time…” If you believe that your ex should have parenting time restrictions, you must be able to prove to the court that spending time with your ex would endanger the physical, mental, moral or emotional health and well being of your children. If you wish to restrict your ex’s parenting time, you must petition the court for the restriction and attend a hearing.

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Park Ridge divorce attorney for child custody evaluatorsWhen parents are divorcing or separated, they may disagree about how to share responsibility for raising their children, the amount of parenting time children will spend with each parent, and a variety of other issues. In some divorce or child custody cases, the court may require assistance from outside experts such as child custody evaluators, to help determine what would be in children’s best interests. When working with these professionals, both parents and children may be concerned about what records will be available to them and whether confidential information will be released as part of the court record. At Weiss-Kunz & Oliver, LLC, we recently represented a client in a case that clarified some of these issues.

How Does Illinois Law Address Child Custody Evaluators?

The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) specifies when and how professionals may be appointed to perform investigations and evaluations of a situation and provide recommendations about children’s best interests. According to 750 ILCS 5/604.10(b), a person who is appointed by the court may review relevant records and information related to the case, and they will present a report that explains their conclusions and recommendations about the allocation of parental responsibilities, parenting time, or child relocation.

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, IL child custody lawyerAlthough your divorce is between you and your spouse, your child will experience the before and after effects as well. Divorce brings massive changes in a child’s life through child custody and/or relocation at any age. Between witnessing an unstable marriage to adjusting to a new life at “Mom’s” and “Dad’s” house, the influence the divorce has on the child can be tough to deal with.

Under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, custody and visitation are now known as parental responsibilities. If you and/or your spouse are granted parental responsibilities, you two are in charge of making decisions regarding education, health, religion, and extra-curricular activities on behalf of your child(ren).

Here are a few pointers to keep in mind that will help contribute to successful parenting time:

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, IL child custody lawyer, IL Child Custody and Substance Abuse lawyerAccording to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), almost 20 million American adults (age 12 and older) are battling a substance use disorder. When deciding child custody matters during a divorce, your child or children's best interest comes first in the eyes of the judge. If the judge believes your former spouse would be unable to make sound of mind decisions on behalf of your child because of their drug addiction, the judge may decide against allowing parental responsibilities and parenting time.

However, if your spouse is in recovery or taking steps towards addressing their addiction, the judge may allow your spouse to see and interact with your child.

Parental Responsibilities and Parenting Time

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