The “best interests” standard

In child custody cases, there are evaluation criteria that must be considered by the Court in accordance with the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA).  Section 602 of the IMDMA directs Courts to the “Best Interest Test” to determine child custody.  Factors include: (i) the wishes of the child’s parent or parents as to her custody; (ii) the wishes of the child as to her custodian; (iii) the interaction and interrelationship of the child with his parent or parents, her siblings and any other person who may significantly affect the child’s best interest; (iv) the child’s adjustment to her home, school and community; (v) the mental and physical health of all individuals involved; (vi) the physical violence or threat of physical violence by the child’s potential custodian, whether directed against the child or directed against another person; (vii) the occurrence of ongoing abuse whether directed against the child or directed against another person; (viii) the willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child; (ix) whether one of the parents is a sex offender; and (x) the terms of a parent’s military family-care plan that a parent must complete before deployment if a parent is a member of the United States Armed Forces who is being deployed.  750 ILCS 5/602.

If your divorce involves a minor child, KLG can meet with you to explain how the “Best Interest Test” is used, and how we fight aggressively on your behalf in seeking achievement of your child custody goals.