Parents who have long hoped for a change in the way child support is calculated in Illinois may find renewed hope in a recommendation by the Illinois Child Support Advisory Committee. Experts say the state's child support models haven't been updated since the 1980s. With 38 states having changed their outdated models since then, many believe Illinois lawmakers should get with the times.
The traditional concept of the American family may have once been defined as a heterosexual married couple linked by biological offspring, but the contemporary definition of "family" is changing with the times. As treatments like in vitro fertilization gain footing as reliable forms of reproduction and unmarried and same-sex couples start families of their own, the genetic link between parent and child can be missing. And while family bonds may be just as strong as they ever were in this modern landscape, many state and federal laws fail to recognize the parental rights of men and women in these types of domestic arrangements. In fact, one recent child custody case highlights just how fragile the situation can be for parents in Illinois and all across the country.
Paternity can be an important and pressing question for parents, both for emotional and legal reasons. For many years, parents seeking answers either needed to wait until the baby was born, or use invasive and potentially dangerous procedures. Now, however, a new technique has been developed that allows a paternity test to be completed before the birth of the child, using only a blood sample from the mother.