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Chicago Lawyers Answer Child Allocation Arrangement FAQs

Child allocation rights can be one of the most complex issues found in family law today. Whether a final decision is reached through mediation or through the courts, it is never a clear cut process. The law firm of Nottage and Ward, LLP has over 20 years of experience with child allocation issues throughout the greater Chicago area and has helped countless parents find the resolution they seek. While there are often no easy answers in such disputes, you can rest assured that our attorneys will work tirelessly on your behalf to secure the best possible outcome. For additional information contact us online or continue to the questions below.

What if we cannot agree on our child allocation arrangement?

What form of allocation does a court usually impose?

Does our child have a say?

If the child chooses, would the court award allocation to a stepparent?

How can we determine the best arrangement and prevent a possibly unfavorable court order if we can't agree on the terms?


Q: What if we cannot agree on our child allocation arrangement?

A: The court will decide for you. You should try to work it out. Negotiation is always better than imposition. If you leave it up to the court to decide, you are including the element of surprise. You can never tell what a judge may decide and you may discover that it is neither what you, your spouse, nor your child or children desire.

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Q: What form of allocation does a court usually impose?

A: Without a written parental allocation agreement, it is presumed that each parent is fit and that a fit parent acts in the best interest of his or her child.

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Q: Does our child have a say?

A: The judge will often appoint an attorney for the child and a psychological evaluator to make recommendations regarding allocation and visitation based, in part, on their conversations and interactions with the child.

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Q: If the child chooses, would the court award allocation to a stepparent?

A: Oftentimes, it is determined to be in the best interest of the child that the natural parent be awarded allocation. The court may, however, decide to give allocation to a stepparent under certain circumstances:

  1. The child must be at least 12 years old;
  2. The child resided with the parent and stepparent during at least 5 years of marriage;
  3. The custodial parent is deceased or is disabled and cannot perform parental duties;
  4. The stepparent provided for the care, control, and welfare of the child BEFORE beginning allocation proceedings;
  5. The child wishes to live with the stepparent; and,
  6. It is determined to be in the best interests and welfare of the child.

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Q: How can we determine the best arrangement and prevent a possibly unfavorable court order if we can't agree on the terms?

A: If you and your former spouse cannot agree, but also do not want the court to impose an allocation order, it is best to consult with an experienced Illinois family law attorney. The attorneys at Nottage and Ward, LLP have a critical understanding of Illinois allocation laws and can work with you to determine the best arrangement for your family. To stop the arguing and come to the right decision, call us at (312) 332-2915.

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Chicago Child Allocation Lawyer Disclaimer: The legal information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice, nor the formation of a lawyer or attorney client relationship. Any results set forth herein are based upon the facts of that particular case and do not represent a promise or guarantee. Please contact an attorney for a consultation on your particular divorce matter. This web site is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the state of Illinois.

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