A divorce is rarely easy. When children are involved, even an amicable divorce can take a turn for the worst. When property is involved, it is important to take action to ensure that your future interests are taken care of. With the help of an experienced divorce attorney, your divorce or family law matter can be handled in such a way as to benefit your current and future interests as well as those of your family.
At The Gil Law Group, our team is comprised of award winning, skilled, dedicated and hardworking divorce and family law professionals. As such, our goal is to educate, negotiate, mediate or litigate to the best interests of our clients. Our legal team has years of collective experience in trying divorce and custody cases throughout the Chicagoland area. Our expertise and our commitment to our clients have made us one of the leading divorce and child custody law firms in the Chicagoland area today. When you work with a lawyer at our firm, you have the backing of our entire team in helping you achieve a favorable result in your family law issue
Illinois Law on Best Interests of the Child
(750 ILCS 5/602)
The court shall determine custody in accordance with the best interest of the child. The court shall consider all relevant factors including the following guidelines:
1. The wishes of the child's parent or parents as to custody of the child;
2. The wishes of the child as to custody;
3. The interaction and interrelationship of the child with his parent or parents, his siblings and any other person who may significantly 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. The physical violence or threat of physical violence by the child's potential custodian, whether directed against the child or directed against another person;
7. The occurrence of ongoing abuse as defined in Section 103 of the Illinois Domestic Violence Act of 1986, whether directed against the child or directed against another person; and
8. The willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child.
The court doesn't consider conduct of a present or proposed custodian that does not affect the relationship to the child.
Laws of Joint Custody
(750 ILCS 5/602.1)
Unless the court finds the occurrence of ongoing abuse, it shall presume that the maximum involvement and cooperation of both parents regarding the physical, mental, moral, and emotional well-being of their child is in the best interest of the child. There shall be no presumption in favor of or against joint custody but upon the application of either or both parents, or upon its own motion, the court shall consider an award of joint custody. The court may enter an order of joint custody if it determines that joint custody would be in the best interests of the child, taking into account the following:
1. The ability of the parents to cooperate effectively and consistently in matters that directly affect the joint parenting of the child. "Ability of the parents to cooperate" means the parents' capacity to substantially comply with a Joint Parenting Order. The court shall not consider the inability of the parents to cooperate effectively and consistently in matters that do not directly affect the joint parenting of the child;
2. The residential circumstances of each parent; and
3. All other factors which may be relevant to the best interest of the child.
Access to Records.
Illinois laws require that neither parent shall be denied access to records and information pertaining to a child, including but not limited to medical, dental, child care and school records unless one parent is prohibited access to those records by a protective order.
Educational Program and Divorce.
In a case involving child custody, the court may order the parents to attend an educational program about the effects of divorce on children. In Kane County it is the KIDS Program, and in DuPage County it is the Caring, Coping and Children Program.
To establish a child support order in Illinois, the amount of child support is considered for the order depends on the non-custodial parent's net income and the number of children for which he or she is responsible. The chart below represents the minimum of what may be ordered according to the Illinois Statutory Guidelines.
Statutory Guidelines of Child Support
Number of Children
Percent of Non-Custodial Parent's Net Income
6 or more
The guidelines in the chart are applied to each case unless the court makes a finding that the amount determined in the guidelines would be inappropriate after considering the best interests of the child. Relevant factors for deviations may include but are not limited to:
- The financial resources and needs of the child(ren);
- The financial resources and needs of the custodial parent;
- Standard of living the child(ren) would have enjoyed had the marriage not been dissolved, the separation not occurred, or if the parties had married;
- The physical and emotional condition of the child(ren) and their educational needs; and
- The financial resources and needs of the non-custodial parent.
Net income is the total of all income from all sources, minus the following deductions:
- Federal income tax;
- State income tax;
- Social Security (FICA);
- Mandatory retirement contributions;
- Union dues;
- Dependent and individual health/hospitalization insurance premiums;
- Prior obligations of support or maintenance actually paid pursuant to a court order or administrative order;
- Expenses to repay debts that represent reasonable and necessary expenses for the production of income;
- Medical expenses necessary to preserve life or health; and
- Reasonable expenses for the benefit of the child and the other parent, exclusive of gifts.
If net income cannot be determined, the court shall order support in an amount considered reasonable in the particular case.
Adoption is a wonderful option for expanding your family, but the laws governing the process are quite complex. Working with an expert in adoption law will help ensure that your adoption proceeds smoothly. Our attorneys will:
- Provide an unbiased explanation of adoption procedures and develop a legally secure plan tailored to your needs;
- Explain your rights and the adoption laws in Illinois;
- Assess the risks involved, including whata costs are permissable and ensuring that birth parents' rights are legally terminated before placement is finalized;
- Review and negotiate adoption agency contracts to ensure your interests are served;
- Clarify you options for post-placement arrangements, if any, with birth parents and draft or review an agreement to ensure your interests and those of the child are served.
Illinois Adoption Laws
Order of Protections
It is against Illlinois' laws for a household or family member to beat, harass or intimidate you. Most abusers become more violent over time, and beatings tend to become more frequent and severe. If you are experiencing abusive behavior, an order of protection is an important tool that can help provide safety for you and your children. You can also ask for an order of protection for an elderly person or someone who is unable because of a disability to ask for one themselves.
An order of protection is a written court order, signed by a judge, which requires an abusive household or family member to do or not do certain things. The order can:
- order an abuser to not abuse, harass or stalk you, your children, and certain other people;
- order an abuser to leave and not enter your home for a certain period of time;
- order an abuser to return certain property to you and prohibit the abuser from destroying your property;
- order an abuser into counseling; and
- order protection for your children.