What Will the Court Consider When Determining My Child Guardianship Petition?
Guardianship Lawyers in DuPage County and Kane County
When considering your petition for the guardianship of a minor child, the court will take a number of factors into account, including whether the child’s parents have voluntarily relinquished physical custody of the child or if they are unable to care for the child. A qualified Illinois guardianship attorney can help with your case.
The guardianship of a minor child in Illinois is handled very carefully because the outcome will have a direct impact on the rights of the child’s parents. Before granting a guardianship, the court must first determine whether the petitioner—the person seeking the guardianship—has “standing” or the ability to ask to be named the child’s guardian. A non-parent petitioner for guardianship has standing if the child’s legal parents have:
- Agreed to the guardianship in writing or in open court;
- Voluntarily relinquished physical custody of the child and are unable or unwilling to make everyday decisions regarding the child’s care; or
- Failed to appear in court with proper notice and are unable or willing to make everyday decisions regarding the child’s care.
Proving Your Case In Illinois
Assuming that the parents have not expressly consented to the guardianship, the most common situation in Illinois is one where the parents have left the child with a friend or family member—often with grandparents—for an extended period of time. This can be considered a voluntary relinquishment of physical custody.
From there, the court must also determine whether the parents are able and willing to care for the child on a daily basis. If they are not, granting guardianship is likely to be in the child’s best interests. Finally, the court must also decide whether the person seeking guardianship will provide the care that the child needs, as well as a healthy, safe environment for the child.
To learn more about guardianships in Illinois or for help with your case, contact our office. Call 630-665-7300 to speak with a guardianship attorney at MKFM Law today. We serve clients throughout the DuPage County and Kane County areas.