You and your spouse are divorcing. You both want what’s best for your children but can’t agree on how to co-parent. Can you work together with help to find a solution together? Below are some of the questions you may have:
- Where should my child live?
- What school should my child attend?
- What pediatrician should see my child?
- How can I ensure my children have enough time with both parents?
Your attorney will discuss these concerns with you as well as the options available to divorcing parents in your unique situation. In Cook County, you both will be referred to an accredited parenting class, in order to learn how to effectively co-parent even after you’ve separated. You will learn how to handle working with your former spouse to raise your children to love and respect both parents. You will learn how to handle delicate issues such as payment of child support, or how to speak to your children about your divorce. You will also learn how to protect your children from the most difficult aspects of your divorce, while still answering their questions in an open and honest manner.
Once you have completed your parenting course, you may wish to work out your parenting issues together, but you need some help from a third party to come to an agreement. The attorneys can negotiate on your behalf, but first your attorney can refer you and your spouse to court ordered mediation. You and your spouse will twice meet with a professional mediator whose job it is to help you come to an agreement as to major parenting issues. If you and your spouse work out your parenting issues in mediation, the Court will enter your agreement as a Court Order. If after mediation you and your spouse are still in conflict as to parenting issues, you have the right to litigate those issues.
When forging an agreement on parenting issues, be careful to consider whether your agreement will be in the best interests of your children. Once a parenting order is entered, the Court will not typically disturb it for several years, unless there has been a substantial change in circumstances. It is important to discuss any parenting proposals you may receive or wish to make with an experienced family law attorney who may foresee future problems that you may not have considered. The lawyers of the Law Offices of Van A. Schwab have decades of family law experience and can provide the representation you need to ensure that your parenting plan will be in the best interests of your children.