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Lombard IL family law attorneyIf you are a parent, your children are probably a top priority in your divorce. You may be well aware of the profound impact divorce often has on children and want to ensure that you do whatever you can to minimize your kids’ suffering. You may hold strong opinions about the child custody arrangements that are best for your kids after a divorce. What happens if these opinions differ from the other parent’s opinions? How are child custody disputes handled in Illinois?

Child Custody Laws in Illinois

In Illinois, child custody is now referred to as “parental responsibilities” and “parenting time.” Parental responsibilities primarily include the parents’ authority to make major child-related decisions. Parents may decide that one parent is in charge of the child’s education, extracurriculars, religious training, and other important matters, or the parents may share decision-making responsibility. Parenting time, which used to be called “visitation,” is the time that a child spends in the care of each parent. Parents are asked to complete a parenting plan that describes how parental responsibilities, parenting time, and other important matters will be handled. The parenting plan is submitted to the court for approval. However, some parents cannot reach an agreement on child custody concerns on their own.

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IL family lawyerMany couples breathe a sigh of relief upon the finalization of their divorces, believing that their legal problems are now over. This, however, is not always the case, especially for couples who share custody of a child. In fact, it is more likely than not that a family will eventually need to re-address their parenting plan to account for a change in circumstances, like a new job, or even just a child’s changing needs. These changes must, however, be accompanied by compliance with specific steps, especially if one or both of a child’s parents want to relocate. For help ensuring that your own child’s best interests are protected during a potential relocation, please call our experienced Lombard, IL child custody and parental responsibility lawyers today.

Relocation by Agreement

Parents who share parenting time equally, or who have been allocated the majority of parenting time can attempt to relocate with their child, but must abide by certain rules. The parent who wishes to relocate must, for instance, give written notice at least 60 days before the move to the child’s other parent and must also submit that notice to the circuit court. These notices must contain certain information, including:

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IL family lawyerDue to changes in Illinois state family law, child custody is now referred to as parental responsibilities, still, the definition remains the same. If a parent is awarded parental responsibilities, they will essentially be granted custodial privileges. In the state of Illinois, parents can be awarded decision-making power as well as parenting time. While many couples seek to secure the overwhelming majority or all of the parental responsibilities in a divorce, the truth is that sharing parental responsibilities can be in your child’s best interest. If you are seeking a divorce, it is critically important to speak with a knowledgeable parental responsibilities attorney.

Your Child Maintains a Relationship With Both Parents: While visitation rights can still be granted in a divorce in which one parent is awarded all parental responsibilities, a child can benefit greatly from living and experiencing life with both parents. If you and your spouse both believe that you are capable parents, it may be time to work with your attorney to come to an agreement on the issues surrounding parental responsibilities, such as parenting time. Working with your spouse to develop a parenting plan can ensure that you have the flexibility to develop a schedule that will be conducive to your child’s lifestyle.

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IL divorce lawyerEvery single year, thousands of couples throughout the United States make the difficult decision to file for divorce. The divorce process can be increasingly complicated when children are involved. In the state of Illinois, child custody is now referred to as parental responsibilities. Parental responsibilities will define how time with the children and decision making is allocated between the parents. Due to the fact that the court will make their decision based on the best interest of the child, it is your responsibility to prove that you can provide your child with a safe and healthy living environment. Below we will examine some of the steps you can take to secure parental responsibilities during your divorce.

What Do Parental Responsibilities Entail?

When you are awarded parental responsibilities, you will be in charge of ensuring that all of your child’s needs are met. This means that you will be tasked with providing your child with a healthy diet, getting your child to and from scholastic and extracurricular activities, addressing all medical needs of your child, and ensuring that some level of supervision is provided when you are not available to directly care for your child. In the state of Illinois parental responsibilities are divided into two categories: decision-making-power and parenting time.

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IL family lawyerWhen a couple elects to get a divorce, the process can be incredibly emotionally challenging. This is especially true when children are involved in divorce. Not only are parents looking to ensure that the divorce will not jeopardize their financial security, but they are also looking to gain significant custodial privileges. Due to changes to child custody laws in the state of Illinois, there is no longer a sole-custody parent. That being said, one parent can be awarded the vast majority of custodial time, leaving the other parent with less time with their children and in many cases a child support payment plan. In order to ensure that you secure the parental responsibilities you are looking for, it is important to know the first steps to take.

What You Can Do to Secure Parental Responsibilities

With recent revisions to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA), state courts now allocate parental responsibilities to divorcing parents. The court will consider various criteria as they make their decision. While it may seem as though the court’s decision is out of your control, there are a number of steps you can take to display why you need to remain a figure in your child’s life.

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