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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. 

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Arlington Heights allocation of parental responsibilities attorneyWhen people get divorced, they are forced to make decisions about splitting the life they built together. In most situations, this will include assets and finances. When a couple has children, this affects the above variables, but also creates new challenges during the proceedings. In most cases, an Illinois judge will keep both divorcing parents in a child’s life, but the care of that child is referred to as the allocation of parental responsibilities and will be organized through a parenting plan.

A parenting plan is an organizational system used by divorced adults with children. The plan allocates parental responsibility and parenting time, which have replaced the terms custody and visitation in Illinois law. These terms mean different things, but they do have overlap. Parenting time is quality time spent with a child. It may be playing their favorite game, providing basic necessities, and disciplining them. Having parental responsibility has more to do with decisions that affect a child's future or well-being. A parent who has parental responsibility will have parenting time. However, there may be cases in which a parent is allocated parenting time but does not have any decision-making responsibility for children. 

Parental responsibility involves making decisions about the following areas, and each of these areas may be shared by parents or allocated solely to one parent:

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Palatine parenting plan attorney

Before a divorce, most parents care for their children together under one roof. Once a divorce is finalized, parents will need to continue providing the same level of care for children while living in separate households. This can be a difficult adjustment for parents, especially if there is bad blood between them. The goal for successful co-parenting is for a child to be minimally affected by a divorce, and a parenting plan can help achieve that. 

What Is a Parenting Plan?

In Illinois, when adults with children get divorced, how the child is taken care of after the split is determined by a parenting plan. This plan is a court order signed by a judge, to which both parents agree. The parenting plan dictates who has parental responsibilities for the child (custody), as well as parenting time with the child (visitation). For example, a parenting plan may state that the child will spend the weekdays with one parent, and the weekends with the other. No matter how it is organized, a judge will only sign off on the plan if it is believed to be in the best interests of the child. 

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Barrington divorce attorney

Planning a wedding requires a lot of work, but getting a divorce has just as many challenges. After being served with divorce papers, it may be difficult to know what to do next. If you and your spouse were married for a long time, going through a divorce means figuring out how to split the life you two created together. Although it is possible to go through a divorce without legal representation, it is recommended to speak with a lawyer to leave the marriage confidently. There are many variables to a divorce, and if your spouse has an attorney, you will be at a significant disadvantage if you do not. An experienced divorce lawyer will know which questions to ask and the necessary actions to take to ensure you get the most out of your divorce settlement. 

Marital Issues That Need to Be Addressed

When sitting down with a lawyer, be sure to discuss the following topics regarding your divorce:

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Palatine parenting plan lawyer

Divorce brings changes to all members of an immediate family. Instead of giving custody to one parent over the other, Illinois allocates parental responsibility and parenting time through a parenting plan, which is a court order that maps out how a child will be taken care of after divorce. This schedule includes details such as when a child stays with each parent. The parenting plan will also specify how decisions are made for education, religion, and medical care are covered, as well as who has the authority to make these decisions. Things like school and extracurricular activities will be taken into consideration when creating this plan, and it is best if co-parents can communicate with each other about expectations during the school year. 

School Issues to Consider  

When creating a parenting plan, it is best to avoid disrupting the child’s life as much as possible. There are a couple of things to keep in mind regarding education:

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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. 

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Arlington Heights divorce lawyer

While divorce is difficult on the adults involved, it can be especially traumatic for the children a divorcing couple shares. How you handle the divorce can have a lasting impact on your children’s lives.  

One of the biggest concerns parents have when getting a divorce is when they will see their children. In Illinois, there is no longer “custody.” Parental responsibilities are determined and parenting time is decided and maintained through a parenting plan. A parenting plan determines which parent the child spends time with and when. Other details such as school pickups, holidays, and extracurricular activities will also be covered in your parenting plan. 

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Posted on in Child Custody

Arlington Heights Divorce Attorney

Child custody, known as the allocation of parental responsibilities in Illinois, is one of the more complicated aspects of a divorce. Despite your opinion and feelings about your ex-spouse, you both still have the common ground of loving your children together. No one wants to feel like their children are taken away, or that they are being purposely kept from them. With the right parenting plan, you can create a schedule that benefits everyone. 

In recent years, Illinois has implemented changes to family law procedures regarding divorce and children. Along with the change from child custody to the allocation of parental responsibilities, the terms “sole” and “joint” custody are no longer used. Visitation is also an outdated term, and parenting time is now used in its place. 

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Schaumburg Divorce Attorneys

Enlisting children in extracurricular activities builds confidence and opens doors to different interests. Participating in music, sports, or clubs as a child can create lifelong skills and passions. 

A break in the family, such as a divorce, can make life feel uncertain for your children, and create conflicts between parents. Perhaps one parent thinks the violin lessons are going nowhere, or horseback riding lessons are too expensive, while the other disagrees.

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Arlington Heights family law attorney sole child custodyWhen parents break up, decisions about who children will live with can often lead to highly contentious disputes. While a court is more likely to recommend joint, or shared, child custody, it is not impossible for a parent to get sole custody in the right circumstances. 

Shared vs. Sole Custody

In Illinois, custody is referred to as allocation of parental responsibility. When a parent has sole custody, the child is his or her total responsibility, and the parent will have the right to make decisions about the child’s education, medical care, religious training, and extracurricular activities. The other parent may be granted visitation rights (known as parenting time under Illinois law). 

Shared custody means that both parents will share in making decisions about how the child is raised, and the child will typically divide his or her time between parents. This split is rarely 50/50, but even if one parent has the majority of the parenting time, the parents will share responsibility for the child’s upbringing.

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Creating a Parenting Plan in an Illinois Divorce

Barrington divorce lawyer parenting planDivorcing with children can be difficult. Their living arrangements will change drastically, and this change can be hard on them. Children thrive off of predictability and routine, which is why it is important that you establish a parenting plan prior to finalizing your divorce. Even if things are friendly now, and you and your spouse agree on the parenting situation, having a plan in writing can save you unwanted costs and headaches later.

How Will Parental Responsibility and Parenting Time Be Allocated?

One of the first things you need to determine in your parenting plan is how parental responsibility will be shared and parenting time will be divided between you and your ex-spouse. There are a few different types of parenting arrangements that are common:

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Determining a Parenting Time Schedule in Shared Parenting Situations

Schaumburg divorce attorney equal parenting timeIn today’s families, parents often function as equal partners when raising their children, and both mothers and fathers are highly involved in decision-making and day-to-day care. Close relationships with their parents are beneficial for children, and these relationships should continue even if parents decide to end their marriage through divorce. 

In recent years, the divorce laws in Illinois have been updated to reflect the nature of modern parenting. The presumption that one parent will have custody of children has been replaced with the allocation of parental responsibility between parents, and rather than granting temporary visitation for a non-custodial parent, each parent will have parenting time with their children. 

Some advocates are pushing for additional changes to the law that they believe would protect parents’ rights. Currently, the Illinois House of Representatives is considering a bill which would change divorce laws to presume that it is in children’s best interests to have equal amounts of parenting time with both parents.

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Schaumburg divorce attorney, parenting time, shared parenting law, allocation of parental responsibilities, child custodyWhen parents decide to divorce, the ensuing changes to their lives can be highly disruptive and stressful for the entire family. As children adjust to living in two separate households, it is important for both parents to be involved in their lives and provide them with the emotional support they need. Unfortunately, this can be difficult when one parent retains sole or primary custody of children.

Studies Show the Benefits of Equal Parenting Time

For many years, it was assumed that it was in children’s best interests to live primarily with one parent, and that dividing time between two households would cause them stress. However, a number of recent studies have found the opposite to be true. Researchers in Sweden found that children in shared parenting arrangements had less stress, fewer psychological problems, and better physical health than children who lived primarily with one parent.

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