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High conflict custody in Illinois gets the help it needs

There is a label applied across the board when it comes to separation and the litigation from a divorce that has a conflict regarding child custody issues. That label is "high-conflict" custody.

When the dynamics of a relationship change, such as in divorce, those involved often pit themselves against each other. The children are more than likely to suffer in this transaction.

Is there an answer when the parents of children involved in a custody issue cannot come to a harmonious arrangement? Some states offer assistance when parents cannot come to a meeting of the minds or find it difficult to honor a court's custody order.

Sometimes hiring or having a state appoint a parenting coordinator or attorney qualified to assist can bring about an accord between the parents. The role of a coordinator is often outlined in a court order. They do not represent either parent but are a guide for both people involved and will often make recommendations for action.

If an impasse occurs, the coordinator will often have the final word in an issue that cannot be resolved. The children and their well-being are paramount in a case such as this.

Communication breakdown often happens in a child custody battle and a parenting coordinator will assist in getting clear responses and better communication in general. The court often decides how specific the role of the coordinator is to be.

While having this type of help may seem like an easy route to take, the truth is that the parenting coordinator often makes decisions based on what is best for the children and that means one of the parents will be unhappy.

The coordinator will submit reports to the court and this may put one of the parents in a bad light, however his or her focus is on the children, not the parents.

In a child custody case, it is best to remember that the needs of the child must come first. It is easy to lose that perspective when you are involved in an emotionally taxing situation.

Source: Huffington Post, "Parenting coordinators: helping parents through high-conflict custody cases" Nicole H. Sodoma and Robin Goulet, May. 08, 2014

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