some cases where there is a substantial dispute regarding children’s
issues, such as custody, visitation, or permission to remove the
child from the state, the judge may appoint an attorney as “child’s
role of the child’s representative is set out in §5/506
of the Illinois Marriage and dissolution of Marriage Act. The duty
of the child’s representative is to advocate what the representative
finds to be in the best interest of the child after reviewing the
facts and circumstances of the case. The child’s representation
is to consider the wishes of the child to the extent the child makes
them known, but is not bound by the child’s wishes.
child’s representative has the same power to take part in
the litigation as the attorneys for the parties. For example, he
or she can investigate, can seek information through discovery procedures,
can present and question witnesses at trial, and can make arguments
to the judge.
the child’s representative enters the case as neutral party
rather than as an advocate for either parent, the judge often gives
substantial weight to his or her recommendation.
child’s representative can often help resolve a case before
trial by giving a well-reasoned recommendation regarding the child’s
child’s representative is different than a court appointed
evaluator. The judge also has the authority to appoint a court approved
mental health professional to investigate and advise the court regarding
the best interest and wishes of a child who is in the subject of
custody proceedings. In some cases the judge may appoint both a
child’s representative and an evaluator.
parents will be required to pay the child’s representative
fee in an amount approved by the court. The judge can also decide
how the fee is to be allocated between the parties.
statue attorneys are required to have special training and be approved
by the court before they can be appointed as child’s representative.
Both Deborah Goldberg and Kevin Kane are on the approved list and
accept court appointments.