When you’re a parent, whether that’s a biological parent, legal guardian, adoptive parent, step-parent, or anything in between, you can make decisions for your child. Some parental rights and decisions are simple, but others can be more complicated. Most parents don’t know how to determine parental rights in Chicago, but it’s important to make the right decisions for your children.
Anyone parent has a certain set of rights, but the courts can restrict, terminate, or return parental rights. For example, parents who are together in a home with their child set their own parenting time, but it becomes complicated during a separation or other legal issues.
Depending on the nature of a divorce, the court can award parenting time to both parents, but a spouse may have their time restricted for various reasons. Furthermore, the court could completely terminate a parent’s rights in cases of abuse or failure to pay child support. Other forms of parental rights include:
Typically, you receive these rights automatically for being the parent of your child. Similarly, if you adopt a child or become a legal guardian, you will also obtain these rights. This process establishes a legal relationship between the guardian and the child. It becomes tricky when you’re unwed or separated.
For example, if you are a single mother, the other parent may not automatically receive parenting rights. This situation happens even if the other parent is at the birth and signs the birth certificate. In such instances, you can marry, and the other parent can legally adopt the child. If you don’t have parental rights, the court could give you rights and custody if the other biological parent can’t fulfill their parenting duties.
In separation cases, depending on how you and your ex want to go about things, you can obtain different combinations of parental rights. For example, there may be one primary parent, and the other parent will have child support obligations, visitation rights, and custody rights. Other factors like location and income play a role, but the biggest decider is the court. Variables like financials, criminal history, and domestic violence can lead to the court determining that one parent will hold all parental rights while the other has none.
By knowing how to determine parental rights in Chicago, you can better understand your rights as a parent going through a divorce or separation. Lines tend to get blurry at this time, so you must consult with Chicago child custody attorneys. At Schiller DuCanto & Fleck, we know of your rights as a parent, and we can help you hold on to and use them.