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Why Would a Court Deny a Parent Custody in a Divorce?

 Posted on September 08, 2023 in Child Custody

b2ap3_thumbnail_child-talking-mother-serious-children_20190814-174220_1.jpgWhile in a perfect society all parents are loving and present, in reality, this is not always the case. Unfortunately, there are some parents who not only neglect or abandon their children, they also actively abuse them. 

 As a parent, you might be concerned that either you or your former spouse will not be considered fit to care for your child. However, there are professionals who can help you. Here at Pesce Law Group, we have experienced Illinois lawyers who can assist you in clarifying what your rights are under Illinois state law. It is our hope that your journey through child custody issues will be made easier with our assistance.     

 What Makes a Parent Unsuitable for Child Custody? 

Child custody in Illinois is split into two distinct areas that together are called “parental responsibilities.” The two areas are decision-making authority and parenting time (formerly known as visitation). 

There are certain requirements that a parent must commit to in order to be considered a fit parent for the purposes of parental responsibilities. Failure to provide a child with these requirements could make a parent considered unfit for parental responsibilities. 

Here are a few examples of behavior that may be viewed as problematic by a court:

  • Neglecting basic needs: A parent may be unsuitable if he does not provide adequate food, clothing, and proper housing for the child.
  • Abuse: A mother or father who is abusive towards a child - either sexually, physically, or emotionally - may be declared unfit for parental responsibilities.
  • Suffering from severe mental illness: A person whose illness causes debilitating issues with day-to-day functioning may not be a suitable parent. 
  • Addiction: An individual who suffers from addiction and is neglecting to care for her child may lose parental responsibilities.

What is Evidence for Alleged Parental Misconduct?

Even if serious neglect or abuse did occur, it must be proven in court. Here are some examples of evidence that can be brought to prove these claims:

  • Legal documents: Any written report which shows that the child was mistreated. This can include police reports, doctor's notes, or a child's school record.
  • Photographs or videos: A picture or clip that shows the abuse or neglect, such as the child's bruises or scars.
  • Written correspondence: This can include emails and social media posts that highlight parental misconduct.
  • Testimony: The testimony of family, friends, neighbors, teachers, and others who are familiar with the child’s home life may be powerful evidence.

Schedule a Free Consultation with an Experienced Naperville, IL Family Law Attorney

In some child custody cases, it is quite clear the parent has been neglecting the child's needs. But, for many others, the wrongdoing is not as evident. If you are unsure of what your status will be in the eyes of the law, it is best to speak to a lawyer. Meet with an experienced DuPage County, IL family law attorney Pesce Law Group, P.C.. With personalized advice tailored to your situation, we can make a real difference in your case. Call 630-352-2240 today.


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