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Illinois child custody bill spurs strong interest, disagreements

Illinois courts have been routinely reaching child custody outcomes in recent years that differ materially from results in past years and decades.

The "traditional" model of yesteryear clearly favored the mother in most divorce cases as the parent deemed best suited to have sole physical custody over children. Correspondingly, the father was often given specified and limited visitation rights. That outcome was widespread and common. Many individuals from divorced families who read our family law blog can readily attest to that.

Times have changed, though, bringing notable adjustments in the divorce sphere both in Illinois and nationally. Many judges have openly stated that their custody-related views and thinking have evolved over the years. That changed mindset has yielded custody outcomes today that are frequently far different from what more typically prevailed a generation ago.

We note courts' general flexibility in their custody deliberations and pronouncements these days on our website at The Law Office of Jamie Mitchell, LLC, in Maryville and Edwardsville, respectively. That is coupled with their ample discretion to liberally consider interrelated factors allowing for truly creative parenting outcomes in divorce matters.

We prominently note on our site that "the well-being of the children involved" is the guiding standard for judges focused on child custody in Illinois. A court will closely look in a gender-free manner at the role that both parents play in an affected child's life, fashioning an outcome that seems to most reasonably promote that young person's best interests.

That might still result in arguably one-sided parental involvement and oversight in a given case, with a more liberalized outcome ensuing in other instances.

A bipartisan bill now slated for consideration in the Illinois General Assembly seeks to formally tweak existing law by creating a custody model that calls for equal co-parenting.

We will flesh out what the proponents of that would-be legislation specifically want, and what the bill's detractors say, in our next blog post.

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