The Role of a Parenting Coordinator in Illinois Divorce

The Role of a Parenting Coordinator in Illinois Divorce

Parenting coordinators, or PCs, are professionals who assist divorced or separated parents with the settlement of various disputes pertaining to the children. Couples may seek the help of a PC if they wish to alleviate some of the stress resulting from child-related issues during the divorce process.

How a Parenting Coordinator Helps Parents

Many parents may disagree on certain child-related concerns throughout a divorce, which may lead a judge to order both spouses to work together with a PC.

PCs know how to communicate with parents who may otherwise be unable to cooperate with each other. In the process, PCs can help parents make certain decisions while eliminating the need for multiple court appearances.

Some other tasks that PCs perform may include:

  • Mediation of disputes among parents
  • Communicate with each parent on behalf of the other
  • Recommend approaches to reduce conflicts between parents to the court
  • Provide parents with the resources needed to maintain consistent and healthy communication
  • Make recommendations regarding parenting classes, drug counseling or testing, psychotherapy, or other resources to help parents

PCs can be extremely helpful during the divorce process, but a judge will only appoint one if it’s considered necessary by the court.

When the Courts Appoint a Parenting Coordinator

Typically, a judge will appoint a PC to a couple in disagreement that is unable to cooperate. However, parents can hire a PC independently if they are able to agree on a professional. 

PCs are normally avoided unless necessary. A judge may be more likely to appoint a PC depending on certain circumstances. For example, parents may be unwilling or unable to communicate with each other regarding parenting time or plans. Courts may also appoint a PC if unsuccessful attempts at mediation have taken place, or if mediation is deemed inappropriate. In some cases, a judge may decide that hiring a PC is in the best interests of the children involved in the divorce.

Regardless of the situation, PCs are rarely appointed, but can significantly help facilitate communications between parents. A PC can also work to secure the best possible outcome for children over whom the parents may be in disagreement.

Through the involvement of a PC, the handling of disputes and communication during the divorce process can be much easier and more efficient.

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