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Wheaton fathers' rights lawyerFor parents, the divorce process can be incredibly stressful. Not only are you divorcing from your parenting partner and former spouse, but you are facing a great deal of uncertainty about your living situation and the time you will spend with your children. For fathers, securing a favorable parenting agreement can often be difficult. Whether you are looking to negotiate a custody agreement with your former spouse or planning to fight for your parental rights in court, an experienced attorney can help you navigate your child custody case. 

Winning Custodial Rights

Due to recent alterations to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, divorced parents are no longer defined as “custodial” or “non-custodial.” Under the current law, specific parental responsibilities are allocated between parents through either an agreement between the parties or a court order. Below are some simple steps that every father should take as they look to secure substantial parental responsibilities:

  • Prove Financial Security: If disputes over child custody and parenting time must be resolved in court, it is important to demonstrate that you have the financial stability to provide for your children. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, custodial fathers are much less likely to fall under the poverty line than custodial mothers. In 2014, only 17.4% of custodial fathers were under the poverty line. Financial security can prove to a judge that you will be able to handle the responsibilities of independent parenting. 
  • Be Available: In order to secure significant parenting time and parental responsibilities, it is important for you to be as engaged as possible when it comes to your children. Fathers are often viewed as secondary to a child’s development, due to common misconceptions related to their commitment to parenthood. By consistently displaying interest in your child’s academic performance and extracurricular activities and being closely involved in their lives, you can improve your chances of a favorable child custody decision. 
  • Hire the Right Attorney: While custodial laws have changed here in the state of Illinois, the perception of a mother as the primary parent has not. In 2014, only one in every six custodial parents were fathers. Due to the difficulties that fathers can face in securing parental responsibilities, it is crucial to hire the right lawyer. As you select the attorney that will assist you throughout your divorce, you should inquire about their years of legal experience, their prior success in cases, and their ability to aggressively litigate in court. A knowledgeable divorce lawyer can make all the difference in protecting your parental rights. 

Contact a Wheaton Child Custody Lawyer 

As you navigate the divorce process, it is common to experience a range of emotions. Parents will have to grapple with the reality of separating from someone they once loved and the possibility of losing time spent with their children. Winning custody rights as a father can be especially difficult. At the Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C., we are dedicated to assisting you in developing a parenting plan that will ensure that you can remain a part of your child’s life. If your ex-spouse is unwilling to work cooperatively to develop a parenting plan that can work for both parties, we are prepared to aggressively represent you in court. To schedule an initial meeting with a skilled DuPage County divorce attorney, call us today at 630-462-9500. 

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Lombard divorce attorney teenage child custodyFor children, witnessing the breakdown of their parents’ marriage can be an emotionally traumatizing experience. When teenage children are involved in a divorce, it is especially important to consider their feelings and discuss the separation with them. Navigating the academic rigors and social aspects of high school can be difficult enough, and the challenges of adolescence are often amplified during a divorce. Below are a few ways to assist your teenage child through the divorce process.

Steps You Can Take 

Helping your child understand the reasons behind your separation and the necessity for a divorce can be an incredibly challenging dialogue to engage in. Still, when parenting teenage children, it can be wise to have as many conversations as possible. Be sure to consider the following:

  • Discuss Custody: While decisions about child custody and parenting time are made by the parents or, in some cases, by a judge, children’s wishes may play a role in these decisions. It can be highly beneficial to have discussions with your teenage children about what they would like to happen after your divorce. Ensuring that your child will be able to spend significant time with both parents can help to lower any anxiety they may have about the divorce. 
  • Offer Emotional Encouragement: In many divorces, children will blame themselves for their parents’ divorce. These negative thoughts can lead to academic problems, anxiety or depression, and even abuse of drugs or alcohol. Speaking with your child about the reasons behind your separation can be key to helping them understand that they were not the cause of the divorce. 
  • Speak With Other Role Models: As you prepare for your divorce, it is important to inform other figures in your child’s life about the separation. As mentioned above, it is possible that your child may begin to struggle academically or display erratic behavior. Speaking with your child’s teachers, coaches, or other family members can help them understand why your child may be acting differently. 
  • Remain Engaged: While a divorce represents a time of change, your child needs you to remain a strong parental force in their life. Make sure you are giving your child ample opportunities to speak with you about the divorce and what is going on in their life. Maintaining interest in their scholastic, athletic, or extracurricular activities and their day to day interests can help your child understand that you will always be there for them. 

Contact a Wheaton Family Law Attorney 

The divorce process is likely to evoke a wide variety of emotions. When children are involved in your divorce, these emotional struggles can be increasingly tumultuous. Hiring a family law team that you can trust can help alleviate your stress regarding the legal side of a divorce, allowing you to focus on your family’s mental and emotional health. At the Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C., our team is confident in our ability to assist you in navigating all aspects of your divorce. To schedule a meeting with an experienced DuPage County divorce lawyer, call our office today at 630-462-9500. 

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Wheaton divorce attorneysFor most parents navigating the divorce process, every decision is centered around the well-being of their children. A divorce can be an incredibly difficult emotional process for all members of the family, but watching parents separate can be especially challenging for children to process.

Some parents elect to fight for sole custody in their divorce. This decision can be based on a number of factors, primarily relating to one spouse’s doubts regarding the other spouse’s ability to navigate parenting responsibilities. Yet, if both parties still believe in the other spouse’s parenting ability, it may be best to begin discussing the possibility of a shared custody parenting plan.

How Shared Custody Can Impact Your Child 

According to statistics compiled by the United States Census Bureau, there are approximately 13.4 sole-custody parents living in the United States. In some cases, sole-custody is the right decision to make for your child’s well-being, but there are numerous benefits to exploring the possibility of shared custody.

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Wheaton divorce lawyersWhen navigating a standard divorce process, both parties must understand that their actions will be under extreme scrutiny. Your life habits, occupation, and living situation will all play a part in how a judge makes decisions on various issues regarding the separation. In any family law case, a criminal charge can have a monumental impact on the manner in which the judge will rule. If you have been accused of a crime during your divorce, it is crucial to notify your attorney as soon as possible.

Crimes During Divorce

The divorce process can be an incredibly stressful time for all parties involved. With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that many people commit a criminal offense during their divorce. Listed below are the most commonly committed crimes that can severely impact a family law case:

Driving Under the Influence (DUI): Although turning to drugs or alcohol during stressful times usually tends to be a bad idea, many people increase their alcohol intake during their divorce. Here in the state of Illinois, a DUI charge can lead to extensive fines, loss of driving privileges, and even potential jail time.

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Posted on in Child Custody

Wheaton child custody lawyersThe vast majority of parents yearn to remain a part of their child’s life, even after their divorce has been finalized. While a divorce signifies a monumental change in a person’s life, it should not rob a supportive and responsible parent of a relationship with their child. For fathers, winning custodial rights can be an incredibly difficult proposition. According to the United States Department of Commerce, only 17.5% of sole-custody parents are fathers. If you are attempting to gain custody of your child, find a legal team that you can believe in, and begin taking the necessary steps to convince a judge that you are prepared for independent fatherhood.

Steps Towards Earning Sole-Custody

Fighting for a role in your child’s life after a divorce can be incredibly difficult as a father. Research conducted by the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG), found that a staggering 27% of all American fathers have no regular contact with their children. If you want to gain custodial rights as a father, it is important to know what steps you can take throughout the divorce process to convince a judge that you are ready for the parenting responsibilities.

Prepare for Your Child: If you truly believe that you are prepared to take on a permanent custody role, your living situation should reflect that. Make sure that you have prepared a bedroom and comfortable living situation for your child, maintain a level of cleanliness that is suitable for a child, and avoid having an abundance of alcohol or any drug paraphernalia at your house. A judge will want to know that your living situation will be a stable and safe place for your children; doing the little things can make a big difference.

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