IL divorce lawyerDivorce is difficult for everyone involved, but for parents and children who are separated by long distances, adjusting to life after divorce can be exceptionally challenging. But thanks to fast internet and inexpensive devices, staying in touch with far-away family members is now easier than ever. While there is no substitute for spending time with your little one in person and getting to hold them, helping them get ready for school, or watching them change from day to day, electronic parenting time may be the next best option.

What is Virtual Visitation or Electronic Parenting Time?

Just like in-person parenting time, electronic parenting time is court-ordered time that a parent gets to spend with his or her child via phone call, video call, texting, or another form of electronic communication. And just like in-person parenting time, both parents are responsible for ensuring electronic parenting time happens. This means the parent who has in-person parenting time must keep tablets or phones charged, ensure the child has openings in their schedule, and take other steps so the parent with electronic parenting time can communicate with their child.

Can My Ex Deny My Electronic Parenting Time?

Neither parent can alter a parenting plan without permission from the court. This means one parent cannot allow a child to become “too busy” to schedule electronic communication with the other parent. Not even failing to pay child support can prevent one parent from allowing the other parent to have electronic parenting time. If your parenting plan includes electronic parenting time and your ex is preventing you from contacting your child, you can take action through the court to try to enforce your ex into compliance.

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Il family lawyerEven after parents have finalized their divorce and settled on a court-ordered custody arrangement, concerns can linger. Parents often get divorced because of significant differences of opinion regarding appropriate parenting methods, and these differences do not simply go away once parents are no longer living in the same home. Often, parenting styles simply come down to differences in character or preference; one parent may view the other as irresponsible, uncooperative, or frustrating, but as long as the children are cared for and safe, these differences are mostly harmless.

Sometimes, however, parental behavior crosses a line into abuse. Because you are not in the home with the other parent, and because children cannot always clearly communicate what is happening, it can be difficult to know whether your child is at risk of being abused. But if you have concerns about their safety or wellbeing, it is better to be safe than sorry.

Signs of Child Abuse at a Co-Parent’s Home

Children handle abuse differently and sometimes the classic symptoms of abuse may not be present. However, some signs that a child may be being abused include:

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IL custody lawyerParenting is not easy under normal circumstances, but parenting during divorce tests the limits of even the most patient parents. Raising a child with a former spouse, especially if there are years of marital conflict preceding the divorce, is a very challenging endeavor. Recognizing this, parents getting divorced in Illinois are required to submit a detailed parenting plan for approval by an Illinois court. Here are three tips for getting the most out of your parenting plan.

Work Together

While the last thing you may want to do with your ex is sit down and discuss important aspects of your co-parenting future, the time and cooperation you invest in this process now can reward you for many years to come. Spouses who work together to create a parenting plan are more likely to be satisfied than spouses who wait and rely on a judge to create one for them. Even when it seems impossible, mediation can help high-conflict couples focus on specific issues to create a parenting plan that works for everyone.

Include as Many Details as Possible

While every parenting plan is required to address certain issues, such as where the child will spend her time, how parents will move a child between houses, and which parent will make certain important decisions on the child’s behalf, parents can include additional details. While it may initially seem counterintuitive, especially for contentious exes, creating a highly detailed parenting plan can actually prevent conflict in the future by anticipating potential problems and solving them ahead of time. Parents can also include a plan for what to do when they cannot reach an agreement in the future.

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IL family lawLife after divorce presents a unique set of challenges. Sharing parenting time with an ex-spouse can be very challenging, especially if that spouse refuses to follow the terms of the court-approved parenting agreement.

Illinois always considers the best interests of children when approving or making decisions about parenting agreements, and decades of research supports the idea that children do best when both parents can be involved in their lives. Illinois law, therefore, prohibits parents who share parenting time from moving children a long distance away without obtaining the consent of the other parent. It is important to understand Illinois child relocation laws and what your options are if your ex violates them.

When Can a Divorced Parent Move a Child Out of Illinois?

A parent who wishes to relocate and take their child with them must meet a few requirements. If the parent lives in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, Will, or McHenry County, they may move within 25 miles of their current residence without obtaining permission; for any other county, the distance is 50 miles. If a parent wishes to move to a different state that shares a border with Illinois, they can do so without permission only if they remain 25 miles or less from their previous home.

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Posted on in Child Custody

IL divorce lawyerKnowing when to get divorced is one of the most difficult decisions a woman can make. Many factors influence the final decision, including whether there is any abuse or serious, unresolvable conflict within the marriage. Tolerating certain problems within a marriage may seem manageable to a woman, but once she finds out she is pregnant, she may realize her marriage has deteriorated to the point where she feels as though she can no longer bring a child into it.

This article discusses some of the issues women who are getting divorced while pregnant are likely to encounter. Keep in mind that this is not intended to be legal advice and that an Illinois divorce attorney is the best source for personalized, reliable divorce assistance.

Possible Paternity Disputes

When parents are married, any children born to them are legally presumed to be the biological product of both the father and the mother. However, individuals facing divorce may be involved with other partners. If a child’s paternity is in doubt, courts may require additional steps to verify that the alleged father is, in fact, the biological father. Courts may order genetic testing of the child, in which case they will wait until the child is born. This could delay the divorce proceedings.

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