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What to Do When Your Spouse Threatens to Seek Sole Custody

Posted on in Child Custody / Parental Responsibilities

Chicago child custody lawyerFor most parents, their greatest concern in a divorce is not who keeps the living room furniture, but rather, how much time they will get to continue spending with their children. Seeing the other parent obtain sole child custody is often a parent’s worst fear. If your spouse is threatening to pursue sole custody, or to keep the children from seeing you, you should know that this result is highly unlikely unless there is genuine evidence that you are harmful to the children. If no such evidence exists, courts in Illinois immensely favor a parenting time arrangement that allows both parents time with their children.

In most cases, you need not fear that you will never see your children again, regardless of what your spouse says. It is, however, important to promptly speak to an attorney, who can respond to the threat on your behalf and continue working to protect the precious time you share with your children. 

Are Sole Custody Arrangements Common? 

A parent’s rights to spend time with and share decision-making power over the child is not taken away lightly in Illinois. Our local courts are so opposed to sole custody arrangements that they will frequently use supervised visitation even when there is some evidence that a parent is not capable of safely caring for the children alone. 

Also gone are the days when a child’s mother is presumed to be the primary caregiver and the superior parent. Now, fathers, mothers, and non-binary parents alike generally share custody in a way that is fair, reasonable, and in the child’s best interests. 

Steps an Attorney Can Take if Sole Custody is Threatened

For a parent to lose custodial rights, it must be proven that the parent is very harmful to the child. Your attorney may want to begin gathering evidence tending to show that you are a suitable parent and enjoy a close and loving relationship with your child. 

A guardian ad litem may also be brought in. A guardian ad litem can interview your children separately and individually in order to develop a better sense of what type of arrangement would be best for them. Guardians ad litem are trained to detect “coaching,” so even if the other parent has trained (or bribed) the children to say disingenuous things about their relationship with you, the guardian ad litem will likely be able to tell. 

It is very rare for a court to find that one parent is so unsuitable that the children would not benefit at all from a continued relationship with that parent. Most parents who are threatened with a loss of time with their children have little to worry about. 

Contact a Cook County Child Custody Lawyer 

The Law Offices of Curtis Bennett Ross, L.L.C. is committed to protecting the bond a parent and child share. As an experienced Rolling Meadows child custody attorney, Mr. Ross will take all measures possible to ensure that you are able to continue spending meaningful time with your children. Call 312-984-1514 for a free consultation. 




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