Lombard Office
Wheaton Office
Text Us Now

What Are the Legal Responsibilities of a Custodial Parent in Illinois?

Posted on in Child Custody

IL family lawyerAlthough parents are typically understood as wanting the best for their children, individual interpretation of what is “best” varies, and parents often disagree. Unfortunately, sometimes parents are accused of being delinquent or neglectful in the care of their children. Illinois law provides a comprehensive listing of parental obligations in caring for children, setting the legal standard for what a child is able to expect of his or her custodial parents.

These include, but are not limited to:

  • A child’s immediate physical needs - This includes providing good nutrition, ensuring the child gets enough sleep, teaching and attending to the child’s hygiene, and caring for the child when he or she is ill or injured.
  • A child’s developmental needs - A child has many developmental milestones, and parents must be involved in helping their child achieve them. This includes things like learning to walk and other basic motor skill development, toilet training and table manners, and teaching the child to play well with others.
  • A child’s disciplinary needs - It is the responsibility of parents to help their children develop into functioning adults, and sometimes this requires discipline – within reason. This can include assigning and supervising chores, and ensuring children have the skills needed to behave with self-control and personal restraint.
  • A child’s social needs - Parents are also required to facilitate positive relationships with a child’s siblings, peers, extended family, and, unless there are extenuating circumstances, the other parent. Although Illinois law regarding parental alienation is complex, there can be serious consequences (beyond the negative impacts to the well-being of the child) when a parent attempts to alienate a child from his or her other parent.
  • A child’s educational needs - Parents must ensure a child attends school, including any remedial or extenuating special services that a child may need. Parents must also communicate with teachers and counselors, and supervise the child’s homework.
  • A child’s needs when the parent is not present - If a parent cannot be present with the child for any reason, it is their responsibility to secure an appropriate caregiver such as a babysitter or other family member.

Contact an Illinois Parenting Time Lawyer

It is normal for parents to have reasonable differences in their understanding and expectation of how each of these responsibilities should be carried out, and some compromise will be necessary. However, parents are always responsible under the law for ensuring the needs of a child are met.

If you have questions about your responsibilities or concerns about whether your ex-partner is meeting their legal obligations to your child(ren), contact the office of A. Traub & Associates today at 847-749-4182 to schedule a confidential consultation with one of our knowledgeable Arlington Heights, IL family law attorneys.




Illinois State Bar Association Northwest Suburban Bar Association DuPage County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association DuPage County Bar Association Illinois Association Criminal Defense Lawyers American Inns of Court DuPage Association of Woman Lawyers National Association of Woman Business Owners
Back to Top