By now many Illinoisans are aware that, come January 1, 2016, family law in Illinois is getting a substantial makeover. “Legal custody” is one familiar legal principle that is being overhauled as part of the legislature’s expansive effort to have Illinois’s family and domestic relations law reflect twenty-first century realities. It remains to be seen, however, if the changes to how a court determines legal custody will benefit Illinois families or whether it will further complicate already-challenging custody determinations.
Divorce affects children in different ways. Research published by Northern Illinois University shows that adolescents with divorced parents are 15 percent more disengaged from their families than adolescents from two parent homes. Healthy co-parenting is important for a child’s development even after the dissolution of a marriage. This is why it is important to have visitation guidelines to follow.
If you have children and are going through a divorce, separation, or are not married to your children’s mother/father, you know that custody and visitation issues can be difficult. Understanding your rights and the reasons behind the laws is an important step to making an ultimate decision.