Divorces bring about challenges to parenthood that many fathers in Peoria do not anticipate. Even though their families are no longer living under one roof, fathers can still play a major and positive role in their children’s lives. Co-parenting is not always easy, but there are things that fathers can do to strengthen the bond between them and their kids.
If you are getting a divorce in Illinois and you have children, you are going to spend time figuring out custody. While it is now referred to as parental responsibilities, custody is still determining who has what rights involving your children. At Butler, Giraudo & Meister, we are aware that this can be one of the most stressful parts of a divorce case. It can help if you become more familiar with how custody is handled in the state.
When it comes to reproductive rights, the father's rights are largely ignored. Reproductive rights are seen almost only as a female's right, especially in the matters of abortion, adoption and procreation. Male rights are patently ignored in these regards, and no laws exist to date in protecting a father's right to reproduction.
If you're locked in a child custody battle, one of the requirements the judge may ask for is a DNA test to determine the child's biological parentage. In case such a demand is made, you will need to supply a DNA sample for testing. You will be provided with a paternity test kit which contains three sets of swabs for collecting DNA. One set will be used by the child, another by your ex-spouse and the third one by you. Remember that home administered DNA testing is not admissible in court.
For a father, maintaining a relationship with his child after the divorce can be difficult. The younger the child, the more weight is given to the mother's role in the child's development. Things are even more difficult for unmarried fathers, who have few parental rights. In the past, it used to be quite easy for the birthmother to prevent the biological father from establishing a legal relationship with his child. Today, however, even unmarried fathers have several means of establishing their rights to the child in front of the law. Declaring paternity refers to legal establishment of the male parentage of a child. Paternity can be established by filing an acknowledgment with the state vital records department.
One of the biggest post-divorce questions is which spouse gets custody of the children. Here are some of the factors that are considered by the court while making the decision:
It is never a pleasant experience for a child to have to witness his or her parents getting divorced. As the father, handling your child's questions and emotions poorly at such a time can result in long-lasting damage to their psyche, while also causing great harm to your relationship. Here are some steps you can use to help save your relationship with your child throughout the divorce:
The rights of the mother concerning an unborn child usually out-weigh those of the father if there is disagreement between them. In these cases, the mother retains most of the decision-making power in terms of adoption, medical, health care and other decisions.
Whether you are an adoptive parent or a biological parent, once you have established paternity, you have certain rights over how your child should be raised. With the divorce rate spiking each year, and the high number of unwed parents, father's rights have been getting a lot of attention.
Shared child custody is the subject of many discussions nationwide, including in Illinois. Some believe that the frequent back-and-forth traveling between parents in joint parenting arrangements cause disruption, anxiety and insecurities in children. Others are of the opinion that children of divorces benefit in various ways from having equal access to both their parents -- even if in two different residences. Although this is not the ideal solution for all post-divorce families, it is worth considering for those who can maintain amicable relationships with their exes.