Category Archives: Child Custody & Visitation

Back-to-school tips for divorced parents

Effective, amicable communication with your ex-spouse about your children’s needs is always the goal, but achieving it can be a tall order in times of stress—and the beginning of the school year can be one of the most stressful. Follow these tips to reduce conflict with your ex and ease your children’s transition back-to-school: Meet […]

Custody Awards to Stay at Home Fathers – Myth or Reality

Most people would like to believe that custody laws in Illinois are gender neutral. While earlier case law favored mothers of young children under “the tender years doctrine”, in an effort to be more gender neutral, the custody laws were rewritten in the 1970’s and 1980’s so that they now clearly indicate that it is […]

Special Considerations for Special Needs Children During Divorce

Each year, approximately 6,000 children born in the U.S. have Down Syndrome,[1] as many as 5 out of every 100 children in school may have Attention-Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) [2] and autism now affects 1 in 68 children.[3]  The emotional and financial toll of caring for a disabled child can be overwhelming, even for […]

The Unexpected Consequences of Filing a Petition to Modify Custody

In most legal matters, the Court can only award relief which is requested by one of the parties. However, in matters regarding modification of child custody, the Courts are not restricted by the parties’ requests. Instead, once the issue of custody is placed before the Court, the Court possesses broad discretion to alter custody or […]

A Child Does Not have the Right to Ultimately Choose His or Her Custodian

One of the pervasive urban myths that I have heard during my many years of family law practice is that children at the age of 13 have the right to choose which parent they live with.  I have heard this from clients, prospective clients and even an occasional practitioner. This statement is unequivocally false.  The […]

Citizenship Registration for Foreign Born Children

American citizens often spend time overseas for job assignments, military deployments or sabbaticals.  On occasion, these extended stays will result in the birth of a child out of wedlock.  Where a child is born abroad and out of wedlock to a father who is a United States citizen, that child is a citizen of the […]

The Right of First Refusal: A Step Toward Less Headaches

Effective January 1, 2014, the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act was amended by adding Section 602.3 titled “Care of minor children; right of first refusal.” The statute now provides guidelines and parameters for provisions in Custody Judgments dealing with a parent’s right to opt to have parenting time with children when the other […]

Olympic Skier’s Cross-Country Custody Battle Has Potential to Create Nationwide Precedent

The nine-month-old infant named Nate was brought into a New York courtroom, cradled in the arms of his father. After a hearing, the same child left the courtroom in the arms of his mother, who calls him Sam. This is only one of many twists and turns in the bi-coastal custody battle between the child’s […]

Disposition of Frozen Embryos is Governed by Contract

Although the Illinois Supreme Court accepts only 4% of the Petitions for Leave to Appeal filed by parties unhappy with their outcomes in the Illinois Appellate Court, many family law observers believed that one recent decision would likely beat the odds and be accepted by Illinois’ highest tribunal for review. That case, Szafranski v. Dunston, […]