How Illinois Courts Determine the Best Interests of a Child - DuPage County Divorce Attorney | Bloomingdale Family Law Lawyers
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How Illinois Courts Determine the Best Interests of a Child

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When determining which parent receives child custody, Illinois follows the tradition of determining what is in the best interest of the child.  State law sets out several “relevant factors” that determine what living condition would be in the child's best interest:

  1. The wishes of the child's parent or parents as to his custody.  Contrary to what you may have seen on TV, the court takes the parent's rights and wishes very seriously.  Unless some of the following factors have been involved, the parents' wishes are taken very seriously by the court.
  2. The wishes of the child as to his or her custodian.
  3. The interactions and interrelationships between the child and his/her parents, between the child and siblings and between the child and any other person who may affect the child's best interest.
  4. The child's adjustment to his home, school and community.
  5. The mental and physical health of all individuals involved.
  6. Physical violence or the threat of violence against the child or another person.
  7. The presence of ongoing repeated abuse against the child or another person.
  8. The willingness of each parent to facilitate a loving relationship between the child and each parent.
  9. Whether one of the parents is a sex offender.
  10. If one parent is a member of the Armed Forces, the deployment status of that parent.

If one of the spouses in the case is a stepparent to the child, then the court tends to favor the “natural” or biological parent for custody of a minor child.  If the stepparent can prove to the court why they should be given custody over the biological parent, the court may grant custody to them.

When child custody issues are a part of a divorce proceeding, it is important to meet with an experienced attorney.  Our caring and experienced divorce and family law attorneys in Lombard, Illinois are here to help you! Contact us today for a free initial consultation.

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