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Can I Move If I Am the Custodial Parent in an Illinois Divorce?

Posted on in Divorce

Barrington divorce and parental relocation attorney

Whether for personal or professional reasons, people can move down the block or across the world. Many individuals have the freedom to do this at any time, but after a divorce when two parents share the responsibility for a child, this privilege may be restricted. Studies show that up to a quarter of custodial parents move away from the area where they lived as a married couple within two years of their divorce. When a parent considers moving after a divorce, some stipulations must be met to protect the rights of their child and the other parent. 

Parental Relocation Rights in Illinois

In Illinois, the term “child custody” is now referred to as the “allocation of parental responsibilities,” and parents will both have "parenting time" with their children. While the law no longer refers to a "custodial parent," a parent who has the majority of the parenting time or shares equal parenting time may be required to obtain approval before moving to a new home with their child. For a parent living in Cook County, he or she can move with the child up to 25 miles without needing approval from the court. This distance limit applies across state boundaries. DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties follow the 25-mile rule as well, but for all other counties in Illinois, a custodial parent may move up to 50 miles from his or her original home. 

In moves that are beyond the mileage restrictions, relocation requires pre-approval, so the court and the other parent must be notified. If the other parent agrees to the move, and a judge considers it in the best interests of the child, then the relocation will likely be allowed. The parenting plan will be adjusted in this case to address any necessary changes to parental responsibilities or parenting time, while making sure the non-custodial parent will remain in the child’s life. If the other parent does not approve of the move, the custodial parent may seek the court’s approval. 

A parent may disagree with his or her child moving because he or she will not be able to see them as much. A 50-mile drive can take close to an hour depending on traffic conditions, and if parenting time is already limited due to time restraints, this will affect a parent’s ability to be a significant part of his or her child’s life. When parents live close to each other, there is more flexibility in how parenting time is spent. In arrangements where noncustodial parents reside far away from their children, the court may grant them longer periods when the children are in their care. 

Contact a Palatine Child Relocation Attorney

Moving can bring great benefits to a parent as well as his or her child, such as a better job, educational opportunities, and family support. If your ex-spouse is refusing to approve a reasonable move, contact a diligent Schaumburg child custody lawyer to protect your rights to relocate and do what is best for your child. At Anderson and Associates, P.C., we have proven experience in handling the legal steps for parental relocation. Call our office today at 847-995-9999 to schedule your free consultation.






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