Illinois Lawyer Referrals and Legal Guidance
Knowing Your Family Law Judge
Findgreatlawyers.com helps people who need Illinois lawyer referrals or legal guidance. We are not a place to find a free lawyer, but our staff of experienced attorneys will talk to you for free and will recommend an independent lawyer that best fits your needs. If you would like our help please contact us at (312) 346-5320. We are based in Chicago, but help throughout Illinois.
Part of us recommending the best lawyer for your needs is making sure that the attorney we suggest, in most cases, regularly appears before the judges in the county where the case will be heard.
In most family law cases, your attorney will work closely with the judge assigned to your case. Contested divorces, child support and custody battles require family law attorneys to spend a considerable amount of time in the courtroom. How the judge rules on the motions your attorney or opposing counsel brings will have a significant impact on the final outcome of your case. Wouldn’t it be nice to know how the judge will likely rule before you spend a ton of money on a lawyer?
Although all family law judges are required to follow Illinois statute in their rulings, each judge will have tendencies and preferences with respect to certain issues. Family law issues tend to be very personal and it is inevitable that personal beliefs will enter into a judge’s decision. It is important, therefore, that your attorney be knowledgeable about the judge that has been assigned to your case. Anticipation of his or her tendency to rule a particular way may allow for the attorney to compensate and produce a more favorable result for you. Occasionally, an attorney will decide that the assigned judge is so incompatible with the case that the attorney will immediately file for a substitution of judge. This substitution will almost always be granted.
While some judicial tendencies may be negative, there are positive tendencies as well. Certain judges are known for being particularly fair and impartial.
Understanding a judge often requires being knowledgeable about the judge’s background, especially if his background bears on your case. For example, if your judge was previously a public guardian, it’s more likely that a child’s representative or guardian ad litem will be assigned to a child custody case.
It’s also good to know if the judge tends to favor women over men or vice-versa. Although a judge would never be able to openly state a preference for husbands or wives, a judge may have a general reputation for being harder on wives, or harder on husbands.
In addition, a judge may have a reputation for awarding higher or lower maintenance (or alimony) amounts.
Although rare, a judge and a lawyer may have a particularly adversarial relationship. While this problem should never be allowed to have an effect on your case, it may be inevitable. The awareness of this problem on the part of your lawyer may prove invaluable. It necessary for that attorney to take steps to ensure you are not effected by this relationship. It may be necessary for a substitution of judges.
Usually, an attorney will simply attempt to work around the tendencies and preferences of a judge to ensure that you get a fair case. He can provide additional evidence and supporting information to assist your cause. However, if there is a combination of factors that may prevent you from receiving a fair hearing, your attorney may want to consider filing a motion for a substitution of judges.
If you have any questions or would like our help in finding a family law attorney in Chicago, Wheaton, McHenry, Decatur or anywhere else in Illinois please contact us at anytime.