Joint custody is not always easy for Illinois parents to make work. They may still be dealing with hard feelings from the divorce and can struggle due to conflict. However, there are ways to set aside the tension and develop a productive co-parenting relationship. This can only serve to benefit the children.
Any type of joint custody arrangement needs to revolve around the children. After all, their best interests are the test by which every action is judged. This means that the schedule should factor in their particular needs. Parents should listen to their children’s input when it comes to setting the custody schedule as well as when there is a need to change. Giving children a voice and listening to it is vital to their well-being.
As difficult as it may be, parents must also learn to deal with each other. One should give the other parent the benefit of the doubt even if they did not get along as spouses. They should also communicate openly and professionally without any recriminations. Many fights start because of issues with delivery when it comes to communicating. If the parents simply cannot speak to each other, there are apps and programs like virtual calendars to consider that help with better communication. Finally, parents need to be open-minded and flexible because what is the right custody agreement today may need to be changed tomorrow.
A family law attorney may help their client by negotiating a custody arrangement that allows for the joint custody. The lawyer might draft provisions regarding parenting time and how decisions about the children are made. It is better to hire a lawyer because people may struggle to negotiate their own divorce without letting their emotions get the better of them. This will set back their efforts to successfully start a productive co-parenting relationship.