When an Illinois divorce involves children, determining where they will live and how often they get to see each parent can lead to major disputes. However, there are several ways that these issues can be resolved.
Litigation is one way to resolve child custody disputes. Courts makes their decision based on what they believe is in the best interests of the child. However, they generally will not make decisions on how the children will spend their day-to-day lives. If parents can work together, mediation is another way that parents may potentially resolve their differences. A mediator may work with both parents to come to an understanding. If parents are having trouble working together, they may each hire a collaborative attorney to help with solutions.
If the major parenting decisions have already been made but the parents are still having difficulties with their co-parenting responsibilities, co-parent counselors can work with parents on their communication skills and with improving their relationship with the other parent and the child involved. A co-parenting coordinator can also act like a mini-judge when parents cannot agree on after-school activities or even exchange times.
If both parents are seeking joint custody, family law attorneys may assist with any negotiations the parents may be working through. If one parent refuses to negotiate on certain school or after-school activities that the kids may want to be involved in, the attorney may help the other parent negotiate a solution. If a parent has reason to believe that the other parent cannot properly care for the child on their own, the attorney may also make the case for sole custody especially if there is evidence of mental illness or drug abuse.