If you are divorcing and have children, child custody and parenting plans are probably at the top of your mind. Nothing is more vital during divorce than ensuring that your children are cared for and provided for. Note that the term custody is no longer used in Illinois but it is used herein as a generic term generally understood by the public.


Even if you have a relatively amicable divorce, Illinois laws regarding child custody and parenting time can be convoluted and confusing. But the Chicago child custody lawyer Michael C. Craven is an experienced, knowledgeable attorney who can address any questions about this critical matter. Mr. Craven is also ready to take aggressive legal action to safeguard your child custody rights.

Who Is Favored In Child Custody Disputes In Illinois?

There was a time years ago when family courts tended to favor the mother in child custody matters. However, times have changed significantly. Today’s Illinois family courts look at several factors when deciding which parent will receive custody, which we describe below.


Illinois’ laws are gender-neutral, it is not assumed that the mother has any advantage over the father in this critical matter. This can be welcome news for a concerned father who wants primary custody of his children. Whether you are the father or mother, Mr. Craven will make the best legal argument on your behalf for you to have the most time with your children.

What Illinois Courts Consider When Deciding Parental Responsibilities?

The court will review many things when deciding which parent will have parental rights to make significant decisions concerning a couple’s children. But the driving interest of the judge on the case will always be which parenting arrangement is in the child’s best interests. Some of the factors the court will consider in determining the best interests of the child regarding child custody and parental responsibilities are:

Which Adults Is Better Positioned For Living With The Child

If the father has been a stay-at-home parent for years while the mother worked, the judge might view the parent who was home more as the better primary caregiver. Or, if one parent needs to travel every week for their job, the court could view the other parent as in a better position to provide more care for the child.

The Child’s Living Situation Today

The court will consider the child’s current home, school, family, and friends situation and which parent’s household would be the most beneficial or least disruptive to how the child lives.

Domestic Violence

Has either parent engaged in domestic violence against the other spouse or the child? If yes, a court may consider it.

Other Factors

Other factors the court may consider when determining the best interests of the child are:


  • The relationship between the parties and whether they can make joint decisions regarding the child’s welfare
  • The quality of the relationship the child has with each party
  • The mental and physical health of the parents and child
  • The wishes of the parents and, if the child is old enough, his/her wishes

Generally, family courts would rather grant shared parental responsibilities to both parties. This is because there is a perception that having a relationship with both parents is in the child’s best interests.

Our Child Custody Lawyer Can Help Now

If you have a child custody problem and are trying to figure out what to do, you can rely on the experience and skill of our Chicago child custody lawyer Michael C. Craven to assist you. Mr. Craven represents clients in all aspects of family law, and he is highly experienced with child custody issues, property division, child support, finding hidden assets, domestic violence, paternity, and more. For a consultation, call (312) 621-5234 now.

The post Are There Differences In Custody Rights Of A Father Vs A Mother In Illinois? first appeared on Divorce Attorney in Chicago.