Posted on in Child Custody

DuPage County parental relocation attorneyAs a parent, after you get divorced, it can be difficult to adjust to spending less time with your kids. You will want to do everything you can to prevent the possibility that you will be required to limit your parenting time further, including addressing situations where your ex plans to move to a new location that is farther away from your home. In cases involving parental relocation, you should be sure to understand your rights and how these matters are addressed in court.

Parental Relocation Under Illinois Law

Divorced parents who live in DuPage County and other counties in the greater Chicago area will need to meet certain requirements if they are planning to move to a new home that is at least 25 miles away from their current home. If a parent who has the majority of the parenting time with their child, or who shares equal parenting time with their former partner, will be relocating, they are required to notify the other parent at least 60 days before the date of the planned move, or at the earliest possible date if they make relocation plans within 60 days of moving.

If you have received a notification from your ex-spouse stating that they plan to relocate, you will want to determine whether their move will require a modification of your parenting plan. A greater distance between your homes may make it difficult or impossible for you to follow your regular parenting time schedule, and transportation arrangements may need to be modified. Child custody could also be affected, since you may be unable to visit your child’s school, attend or participate in their activities, or go to their doctor appointments and stay abreast of their medical needs.

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Wheaton IL family law attorneyIn an Illinois divorce that involves children, parents are expected to reach a resolution on a parenting plan that defines the terms of how they will co-parent after the divorce. In some cases, the court must play a significant role in decisions regarding the parenting plan, including when there are major disagreements between the two parents. However, parents have the option of working together to create a plan that they both agree to, allowing them to retain more control over the resolution. A qualified family law attorney can help you create a parenting plan that protects the interests of you and your children.

What is a Parenting Plan?

Two of the most important components of a parenting plan are the parenting time schedule and the allocation of parental responsibilities.  The parenting time schedule should include the days that the children will spend living with each parent, as well as important details regarding transportation between homes, and in many cases, to and from the children’s appointments and events. The allocation of parental responsibilities outlines how the parents will contribute to decisions regarding the children’s activities, education, health, and other important matters.

Create Consistency in Your Parenting Plan

As you create your parenting plan, there are some important things to keep in mind, one of which is the value of consistency. A divorce will be hard on your children, so the more stability you and your spouse can create, the easier the transition will be for them. When establishing your plan, keep as many things in your child’s life consistent as possible. If your child has an extracurricular activity during the week, work that activity and any other regular events into the parenting plan. If your spouse picks up your child every day from school, continue that routine if possible. When changes do need to be made to the child’s schedule, communicate these changes with your spouse and make sure you both can commit to them.

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Posted on in Child Custody

DuPage County child custody attorneyIf you share parental responsibilities regarding your child with a former partner who has proven time and again to be inconsistent and unreliable, terminating his or her parental rights may make the most sense to you. However, under Illinois law, unless there is another party willing to step in and adopt the child, parental rights usually will not be terminated at the request of the other parent, unless there are extreme circumstances involved.

What Does Termination of Parental Rights Mean?

When a person’s parental rights are terminated, it means that he or she is no longer legally responsible for a child. When this happens, the terminated parent no longer is required to make child support payments, but he or she also no longer has rights to parenting time or any say in how the child is being raised.

The Illinois Adoption Act (750 ILCS 50) states that the only circumstances in which a parent’s rights can be terminated are when another person is looking to adopt the child, or when a court has found that a parent is unfit. In most cases, the court will agree that a child will best benefit from the care, or at least the financial support, of two parents. However, parental rights may be terminated if a parent is shown to be unfit for one or more reasons, including:

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Posted on in Child Custody

Wheaton IL family law attorneyA divorce is the end of a marital relationship, but if you have children, your final court date is most likely not the last you will see of your ex-spouse. Though you and your spouse may not live together anymore, you still have to figure out how you will share parenting responsibilities and duties. These tips can help you increase your chances of successful co-parenting after a divorce:

Tip #1: Keep Your Emotions Under Control

If you are recently divorced, it is not unusual for you to still have lingering emotions about the end of your marriage, but it is important that you put those emotions aside for the benefit of your children. Anger, resentment, and jealousy have no place when it comes to parenting your children. Keeping a level head is one key to successful co-parenting.

Tip #2: Improve Communication With Your Ex-Spouse

Though it can seem impossible, making sure you have healthy communication with your spouse is crucial to co-parenting success. Treat your new relationship like a business partnership and meet or correspond consistently with your ex-spouse to discuss your children and make sure that you are both in the loop about what is going on in their lives.

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Wheaton IL child custody lawyerIf you have recently gone through a breakup or divorce, it is natural that you would want to move on to a new relationship. However, when you and your ex have children together and a child custody case pending, the other parent and the court may have a right to know more about the people you are spending time with, especially if that time is spent around your child.

How a Court Makes Custody Decisions

When a judge in Illinois is making a decision about parental responsibilities and parenting time, the judge must consider what is in the best interest of a child. Some of the factors a judge will consider include: 

  • What arrangement provides the child with the most stability?

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