When parents are embroiled in child custody battles in Illinois, failing to be involved in the child’s daily activities, not addressing drug, alcohol, or other parental fitness issues, or disparaging the other parent can cause them to lose a custody case. Both parents have equal rights to pursue custody of their children and avoiding these types of conduct can help ensure that parents win custody of their children.
Lack of Involvement
Parents who do not help their children with homework, prepare their meals, make certain that they go to bed on time, read to them or get them ready for school are at a disadvantage in child custody cases. Similarly, parents who do not attend their children’s extracurricular activities, attend parent-teacher conferences or take kids to their doctors are also less likely to win custody.
Parental Fitness Problems
Parents who continue to use alcohol or drugs have a difficult time being granted custody. They should avoid using substances on an even casual basis. When substance abuse allegations are raised in child custody cases, courts tend to take them seriously. Parents who want to win custody should get help if they have substance abuse problems.
If there is domestic violence involved in the relationship, the perpetrators are unlikely to win custody. Parents who are unable to keep their emotions in check and who frequently lose control are less likely to win custody. Engaging in outbursts in court out of anger is a good way to lose the case.
Disparaging the Other Parent
Courts tend to disfavor parents who disparage the other parents and who are unlikely to encourage good relationships between them and their children. Allegations of parental alienation and interference with parenting time are taken seriously by the courts, and parents who fail to encourage a positive relationship between the child and the other parent are more likely to lose custody.
Text Messages, Emails, and Social Media
Some parents lose their cases because they impulsively send text messages or emails and make angry social media posts. Parents should understand that family law attorneys often use this type of evidence in custody cases. They should avoid sending angry messages or making questionable posts on social media.