Many divorcing parents have concerns regarding parenting time arrangements that involve infants and young children. When courts grant overnight visits to a parent who is not the primary caregiver, the other parent may worry that a preverbal or preschool child will have difficulty adjusting.
To address these concerns, flexibility to schedule more daytime hours for the non-primary caregiver in lieu of overnight visits is supported while children are very young. However, if a parent is demanding overnight visits, many experts agree that even waiting until age three is better because a child has the ability to express their feelings and more fully understand their parents.
Unfortunately, some parents may ignore the child’s developmental needs in favor of overnight stays, often because they believe this is the only way to maintain a close relationship with their child, or perhaps there is incentive to increase overnights due to child support laws. While courts strive to act in the child’s best interests, some may focus on a parent’s right rather than the child.
When you are divorcing and have children it is important to work with an experienced divorce lawyer who can negotiate parenting time and parenting responsibility arrangements that are best suited to your child’s stage of development and unique needs. Ronald L. Bell & Associates, PC has over 30 years of experience working with families and in the Illinois family court system to achieve the most favorable result for their client’s child custody matters. Contact our office today for immediate assistance if you have questions regarding Illinois parenting time, child support, or other family law matters at 847-495-6000.