Call FW Family Law Group in Libertyville, IL for guidance with Child's Representative/Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) Law

When divorcing parents are unable to agree on child custody and visitation issues, the court will appoint an attorney to represent the interests of the children. The court may appoint a child's representative or Guardian Ad Litem (GAL). Kristie C. Fingerhut and Jessica L. Weiner, Libertyville Child Representative Lawyer, have experience as both child representatives and being a GAL.

FW Family Law Group LLC acts in the best interest of the children

FW Family Law Group LLC acts in the best interest of the children

  • The role of a child representative: The child representative is charged with being an advocate for what the representative has deemed will be in the best interest of the children. The wishes of the children may be a consideration, but the representative is not duty-bound to follow them. The representative gathers all the facts and interviews witnesses. The representative presents evidence to the court and can cross-examine witnesses. No written report is provided to the court because the representative is not a witness but an advocate for what the representative has determined is in the best interest of the child.
  • The role of a GAL: The court appoints a GAL who is charged with investigating all the facts of the case. The GAL interviews the children and the parents. Based on the evidence accumulated, the GAL presents a written or oral report to the court including the GAL's opinion as to what is in the best interest of the child. The GAL is a witness and may be called to testify in the child custody proceeding.



The Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) has guidelines for representatives and GALS to follow. Those guidelines emphasize that a representative or GAL is to be neutral and base the investigation on specific facts unique to each situation. The relationship between the representative or GAL and the parents is not adversarial and the representative or GAL is to act only in the best interest of the child. The long-term goal is for the parents to work together in achieving the best interest of the child or children.

Libertyville Attorneys Kristie C. Fingerhut and Jessica L. Weiner have experience as both child representatives and being a GAL.

Attorneys Fingerhut and Weiner have experience as child representatives as well as GALs. They know what investigation needs to be done in order to form an opinion as to what is in the best interest of the children. They may interview both parents and the children and any step-parents that may be involved. They may ask parents to sign releases so they can obtain school records and speak to school teachers or counselors.

They understands the importance of focusing on the best interest of the children. They take their role as child representative or GAL seriously and are committed to contributing to the best possible outcome.