What’s the best way to handlea divorce if my husband insists on getting primary custody and just giving me visitation?

UPDATED: Mar 20, 2011

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What’s the best way to handlea divorce if my husband insists on getting primary custody and just giving me visitation?

My husband wants to separate/divorce; we have 2 young children 2 and 4. I work full-time and he watches them during the day. He got hurt at work and was laid off, however he never qualified for disability. He wants me to move out or find an apartment for them that I can afford, along with child support. He said that I can get them on the weekends. He wants me to sign out a form that he is creating stating this and I said it has to be legalized. He said if I do that he is going to fight for full custody saying I’m a unfit mom. Kids fall and accidents happen but I’m not unfit. What can I do? Should I speak with a divorce attorney? In Cook County, IL.

Asked on March 20, 2011 under Family Law, Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Definitely speak with a divorce attorney if you don't want to do this; you don't have to simply accept your husband's terms. That said, you do need to be prepared that a court might well award your husband primary custody, since at present he *is* the primary caregiver--thus, it would in many ways be continuing the arrangement that exists presently--and also since yvou are the breadwinner--how could you have primary custody if you have to work full time? Very often, if the husband works and the wife is the caregiver, the wife gets custody; this is simply the inverse  of that more-common situation. A divorce attorney can advise  you as to your rights, the odds of getting custody, the best way to try to get custody, as well as issues like a fair distribution of assets, spousal support, how much visitation you should get if you don't get custody, etc. However, as stated, be prepared that from what your write, there are good arguments for your husband having custody.

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