Depending on the family dynamics, grandparents may find themselves at the mercy of the parents of the grandchildren in question when it comes to the issue of visitation. Under Illinois law, grandparents have a limited right to request court-ordered visitation privileges with their grandchildren. State law also recognizes a parent’s fundamental right to the final decisions regarding how and where their children are raised and who may have access to them while they are minors. From a legal standpoint, however, the rights of both parents and grandparents are always viewed in tandem with what is in the best interest of the child. Situations do arise in which the best interest of the child may need to be decided by a family court.
A quick glance at the raw numbers shows that for every two marriages in the state of Illinois in a given year, there is one divorce. While this may indicate that half of all marriages end in divorce, the numbers are a little misleading. The current likelihood of divorce for those who are get married this year is estimated to be between 30 and 40 percent.
When a couple who has children together decides to get divorced, they will need to develop a parenting plan. A parenting plan is a document which outlines each parent’s rights and responsibilities regarding the child and serves as the cornerstone on which the couple’s ongoing co-parenting relationships will be built. According to Illinois law there are more than a dozen considerations that must be addressed in a parenting plan including things like the child’s permanent address for the purposes of school enrollment and a parenting time schedule for each parent. There are other, optional elements that can be included in a parenting plan as well, including the right of first refusal. If your parenting plan provides you with the right of first refusal, it is important to understand what that means.
There are many reasons that a couple may decide to end their marriage. In some cases, the spouses may disagree on financial issues or parenting strategies. In others, one partner may be guilty of negative or destructive behavior such as mental or physical cruelty or infidelity. No matter what drives a married couple apart, however, the state of Illinois will only grant a divorce on the no-fault grounds of irreconcilable differences.