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How Are Parental Responsibilities Allocated in an Illinois Divorce?

Posted on in Child Custody

Barrington parental responsibility lawyer

When parents decide to get divorced, the future of their child will be one of their primary concerns. No parent wants to give up time with his or her child, but when a couple splits up, changes to parent-child relationships are inevitable. During their divorce, parents should be sure to understand how Illinois law will affect decisions about the allocation of parental responsibilities.

What Is Parental Responsibility?

In 2016, the word “custody” was removed from Illinois family law and replaced with "allocation of parental responsibility." Another common term, “visitation,” was replaced with "parenting time." Parental responsibility includes the right to make decisions for a child, and it is usually shared by both parents in some capacity, unless one parent is seen as unfit. These decisions involve religion, education, medical care, and other important choices a parent makes for a child. 

Decisions about the allocation of parental responsibility will be set down in a parenting plan. This parenting plan will be part of the couple's divorce decree, and it will be a court order signed by a judge that both parents will be required by law to follow. A basic parenting plan must include the following:

  • Who can make important decisions regarding the child

  • A schedule of the time the child will spend with each parent

  • A plan for any future changes in regard to parental responsibilities

  • Who has the right to obtain medical and educational records

  • How transportation of the child between parents' homes will be handled

The purpose of a parenting plan is to make decisions based on the best interests of the child, but two divorcing spouses can often disagree on what is “best.” Parents may be able to work together to create a parenting plan through negotiations or by participating in mediation, but in some cases, they may ask a judge the make the final decisions about the allocation of parental responsibilities. In these cases, each parent may file their own proposed parenting plan, and a court hearing will be held in which a judge will decide how to allocate parental responsibilities in a way that protects the child's best interests.  


Contact a Palatine Family Law Attorney

Creating a parenting plan after a divorce can be a frustrating process. If you and your ex-spouse are unable to agree on a plan, the decisions regarding your child’s future may be placed in the hands of a judge. You know what is best for your child. Contact an experienced Barrington allocation of parental responsibilities lawyer to learn how we can help you protect the best interests and well-being of your child. Call Anderson & Associates, P.C. today at 847-995-9999 to set up a free consultation.



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