Divorce can be difficult for many couples, but what makes it even harder is sharing
children. Both parents want what’s best for their children, but
they also want to spend as much time with their kids as possible. With
split custody, this isn’t always possible. Deciding child custody
can often be what lengthens the divorce process. In order to make this
easier, we have assembled the top 5
child custody mistakes we’ve seen many parents make during and after the divorce
process, so you can avoid making the same errors.
Mistake #1: Making It About You
You may be infuriated with your spouse, but
your relationship with your wife or husband and
your child’s relationship with your wife or husband are two incredibly different animals.
While he or she may have failed as a spouse, your ex could still be an
excellent parent. Divorce is not a battle to be won, and many parents
make the mistake of using their children as ammunition. This can not only
lead to your child’s resentment later, but it could also cost you
in court. If the court sees you are more concerned with your own affairs
than with your child’s wellbeing, a judge may decide to award your
spouse physical custody.
Mistake #2: Showing Disrespect for the Court
If the court mandates a temporary child custody order, you should do your
best to abide by it. By violating any temporary restraining order (TRO),
you are showing you view the court with contempt. The court will take
this violation into consideration when making a decision regarding your
capability of being a responsible adult.
Mistake #3: Forgetting to Pay Child Support
If the court orders you to pay child support, you have to pay it each month
and on time. While your spouse can’t prevent you from visiting your
kids if you don’t pay, your children may need that money for school
supplies, after-school activities, medical care, and so on. There is no
excuse for not paying child support. However, if you have lost your job,
you can make an appeal to the court to lower the payments or halt them
temporarily until you find a new work situation.
Mistake #4: Taking the Kids on Vacation Without Consent
Every child custody order will include stipulations on what to do if you
want to take the kids away on vacation. If you violate these orders, which
typically include getting permission from the other parent, your ex can
call the police and accuse you of kidnapping. The court might decide to
limit your custody or remove it completely after this occurs.
Mistake #5: Blowing Off Visitation or Custody
If you’re supposed to pick your kids up at a particular time each
week, don’t neglect this duty. Visitation and shared custody are
set by the court with the child’s best interests in mind. Children
do best when both parents participate in raising them. If you neglect
your parenting duties, this could harm your children emotionally or psychologically
in addition to damaging your relationship with them. Also, deciding to
blow off a court-ordered time demonstrates you don’t care about
your relationship with your kids. The court may choose to restrict your
time as a result.
If you would like to discuss your divorce case with a skilled
Illinois family law attorney, don’t hesitate to call us.
Wakenight & Associates, P.C. has been helping people deal with family law matters for years. We understand
this may be a difficult time for you and your family, so we will try and
make your legal experience as stress-free as possible. Talk to us about
your situation in a free case consultation.
Call us or
fill out our online form to schedule your consultation today!