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DuPage County, IL child relocation lawyerWhen parents divorce, there are many different child custody issues that can lead to conflicts and disagreements. One of the most emotional issues is that of relocation, or when one parent wants to move away with the children. If you and your spouse are having trouble agreeing on whether or not your ex should be allowed to move away with the kids, it’s important to understand what your rights are under Illinois law.

Illinois Parental Relocation Laws

In Illinois, if a parent moves a certain distance away, it may classify as a "relocation." All parental relocations must be approved by the court. If the parents agree to the relocation and the relocation is in the child's best interests, then the process of getting approved is relatively straightforward. However, the process is more complex if one parent contests, or disagrees with, the relocation.

The main question the court will consider when it comes to a proposed relocation is whether the relocation is in the child's best interests.  If the court decides that it is not in the child's best interests, the court can deny permission for the relocation. The court may consider a number of different factors when making this determination, including:

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Naperville Parenting Time LawyerWhen parents divorce, they must contend with many difficult issues. If the parents want to share custody, they just decide how to divide parenting duties. In Illinois, the time a parent spends caring for his or her child is called parenting time. A parent’s right to make decisions about his or her child’s education, medical care, and other important matters is referred to as the allocation of parental responsibilities. Divorcing parents who want to share parenting time must decide which days each parent will care for the child. They will also need to determine how to handle parenting time arrangements for birthdays, holidays, school vacations, and other special occasions.

Considerations for Shared Custody in Illinois

If you and your child’s other parent can agree on a parenting time schedule, you can design whatever schedule works best for you and your child. As you make your parenting time schedule make sure to consider:

  • How your child wil bel transported to and from each parent’s home

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wheaton child custody lawyerWhen a child’s parents are no longer together, they will need to determine how issues related to child custody will be handled going forward. Married parents who choose to divorce or unmarried parents who are separated will need to create a parenting agreement that details how they will make decisions related to their children and a schedule for the parenting time that children will spend with each parent. In some cases, a parent may be concerned about their children’s health and safety when they are in the care of the other parent, and they may believe that restrictions on parenting time may be appropriate, including supervised parenting time.

Situations Where Supervision May Be Needed During Visitation

While Illinois law presumes that parents are fit to care for their children and that they have the right to reasonable amounts of parenting time, there are some situations where a parent may believe that certain restrictions should be placed on the other parent. These restrictions must generally be based on evidence that a parent’s actions may place children at risk of suffering physical or emotional harm. Examples of cases where parenting time restrictions may be needed include:

  • A parent has a history of domestic violence or has been arrested or convicted of domestic abuse in the past.

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DuPage County divorce lawyerMany parents who are thinking about ending their marriage have the same concern. They wonder, “How often will I get to see my kids if we divorce?” If you are thinking about divorce and you live in Illinois, it is important to understand how the state handles visitation. It is also important to know the vocabulary Illinois courts now use to describe parenting duties. In Illinois, the term “visitation” is no longer used to describe the time that a child spends with each parent. Visitation has been replaced by the term “parenting time.” Read on to learn about how parenting time decisions are handled in Illinois divorce cases.

How Much Parenting Time Does Each Parent Get?

Parents have the right to design their own parenting plan and submit it to the court for approval. As long as the parenting plan serves the child’s best interests, the plan will be approved and formalized into a binding court order. The parenting plan contains important information about how parents will make major decisions such as where the child goes to school, as well as the parenting time schedule. Some parents decide to split parenting time nearly equally. Others create a plan in which the child lives with one parent on the weekend and the other parent on the weekdays.

What if We Cannot Agree on a Parenting Time Schedule?

When you are used to tucking your child into bed every night, the idea of going days or even weeks without seeing him or her can be distressing. Consequently, parents often disagree about how much parenting time each parent should be allotted in the parenting plan. If you and your spouse cannot reach an agreement, the first step is often to attend family law mediation and work with a mediator to reach a compromise. Your respective lawyers may also be able to help you negotiate an out-of-court decision on parenting time disputes. If you still cannot reach an agreement, the case may go to litigation.

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Naperville child custody attorneyAll over the U.S., individual states are changing their laws around marijuana use, making it legal at the state level even as it remains illegal under federal law. In Illinois, Governor Pritzker signed the Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act into law in 2019, changing much about how marijuana is regulated and treated under the law.

Because of this new law, marijuana can no longer be used to discriminate against parents when it comes to custody considerations–with certain limitations. However, stereotypes of marijuana users are still very much a part of society, and bias exists from spouses and judges alike. Here are a few things to consider when wondering whether your or your ex’s marijuana use could impact child custody decisions.

Keep Marijuana Away From Children

Whether it is taken recreationally or for medical purposes, marijuana is a drug. This means that parents should exercise great caution to keep marijuana out of the hands of children. Obviously, this includes marijuana flowers and paraphernalia, but edibles and other candies can be packaged and presented in a way that is especially attractive to children. Child custody battles can be tense even without accusations of allowing access to marijuana, so make it easier on yourself by keeping marijuana away from the kids. You should also plan for your visitation times and avoid marijuana use around your children.

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