Category: Child Visitation Law in Illinois

Child Visitation Law in Illinois – Resources & Answers to Common Questions

We’re a law firm specializing in divorce and family law. In this section of our site you’ll find articles, resources and answers to common questions about child custody & visitation law in Illinois.

If you need legal help or representation please click here to request a free 30 minute confidential consultation with one of our team.

Why Do I Need a Guardian Ad Litem?

If you’re in the process of divorcing or planning for divorce, you may need a guardian ad litem. This is just a fancy way of saying that your children will have an independent professional who represents your children’s best interests.

It’s important to know what a guardian ad litem is, what he or she will do in your case, and how to manage your relationship with him or her. After all, it’s in your best interest to work with this attorney rather than make his or her job more difficult.

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Grandparents reading a book with their two grandchildren

Non-Parent Visitation in Divorce

Only parents have visitation rights with their children after divorce. This means that the Illinois statute that governs divorce procedure, the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA), only grants parents the right to see their children, provided there isn’t a compelling reason to keep a child from a parent.

Other relatives, like grandparents and siblings, can file a petition for visitation with children of a divorced couple. The burden a non-parent must show to get a petition for visitation granted can be high, making it difficult for non-parents to get as much time with their grandchildren or sisters/brothers as they want. If met, however, a non-parent can get a set visitation schedule with children, just like a parent can.

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Summer Schedule Concerns After Divorce

Creating a parenting schedule can be difficult enough when your kids are in school. However, once summer vacation hits, it can be even more complicated, especially for parents who have recently divorced. Many parents are concerned over summer vacation for good reason: With the kids no longer in school, it’s difficult for parents to manage time, run errands, and otherwise meet the needs of shuffling the kids around from sport to sport or event to event.

But, does it have to be?

In this article, we address some of the most common summer scheduling concerns and what you can do to lessen their ill effects on your already hectic lifestyle.

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How to Work Out a Parenting Schedule

Children’s issues are front and center in any divorce. In fact, you’ll have a parenting schedule and child support in place well before your final court date. But, how does a couple decide how to share time with the children?

In most cases, it’s a collaborative effort. While there is no longer custody in Illinois, the children are likely to live with one parent – often referred to as the residential parent – and enjoy visitation with the other parent. As such, it’s important to coordinate a schedule with your soon-to-be former spouse to ensure your children have a schedule and stability.

But, how is it done?

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A mother helping her daughter with her homework

5 Simple Tips for Effective Co-Parenting

Many parents (wrongfully) believe that divorce is the most difficult part of a separation for children. However, the co-parenting that follows can often be even more of a challenge. This is especially true if parents are unwilling or unable to work together in the best interests of the children.

Whether in DuPage, Kane, Kendall, or Will County, your divorce must focus on negotiating effective co-parenting arrangements with your former spouse. By doing so, you will make life after the divorce better for both yourself and your children.

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What Does a Parenting Plan Actually Look Like?

You and your spouse will still need to parent and raise your children when you’re divorced.

If you’re anything like most people, you know that this will be addressed as part of your divorce proceedings. However, most are unaware what a parenting plan looks like, what it contains, and how you actually reach an agreement when it seems unlikely, if not impossible, that you and your spouse can agree.

In this article, we’ll address all three issues so when you meet with your Naperville divorce lawyer, you’ll know which questions to ask and have a better idea of what’s to come.

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Visitation in Illinois: Parental and Grandparent Visitation Rights

Visitation is a concern for parents and grandparents when a couple chooses to get divorced. Although visitation is now referred to as “parenting time” since the January 1, 2016 change in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, the concept remains the same.

Of course, the residential custodial parent (i.e. the parent the children will live with) isn’t concerned about visitation. But, what about the other spouse? For that matter, what about grandparents as well?

Parenting time is a tricky issue in any divorce. In this article, we hope to clarify your rights as the non-custodial parent or as a grandparent.

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The Benefits of Parenting Time Exchanges in Public Places

Parenting time is important to any parent. As a divorced parent, this time becomes even more valuable because you won’t be able to see your children every day. And, while this can make it tempting to keep them at home, it’s important to consider alternatives when you take your parenting time.

Most parents experience issues in parenting time when it comes to scheduling. Though your Allocation of Parental Responsibility Judgment will provide for pick-up and drop-off times, you may waste a lot of your parenting time driving to and from your former spouse’s home or other pick-up and drop-off area. This is why many parents consider arranging for parenting time exchanges in public places.

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3 Complex, Child-Related Issues in Illinois Divorce and How to Handle Each

Children are the primary concern in any divorce case. Not only are their needs put before the spouses, but the court will also put them before any other considerations in a case.

As you can imagine, parents disagree about many child-related issues. From parenting time to removal (i.e. moving) and more, your Naperville divorce lawyer will spend a lot of time in your case negotiating child-related issues on your behalf.

Read on to learn more about how the courts handle issues such as:

  • Parenting time;
  • Visitation restrictions; and
  • Removal

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3 Benefits for Children Under New Illinois Domestic Relations Laws

If you’ve been reading our blog for awhile, you already know that there were major changes to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) beginning January 1, 2016. Not only have major terms, such as child custody, changed in both name and meaning, but there are distinct benefits that have resulted from this seemingly minor changes as well.

Most importantly, many of the benefits gained from these new laws focus on children. And, with children’s’ interests as the focal point of many divorces, this seems to suggest the new law has accomplished what it was meant to accomplish.

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Divorce Q&A: What’s a Parenting Plan?

Before January 1, 2016, children-related matters in divorce were referred to as custody and visitation. This meant that one parent would be considered the residential custodial parent (i.e. the parent the child or children lived with) and there would be a visitation schedule to ensure both parents spent an equitable amount of time with the children.

Now, the idea of custody and visitation are no longer. The revised Illinois Marriage and Dissolution Of Marriage Act provides for parenting time, which was formerly custody, and parental responsibility, which was formerly referred to as visitation.

As part of your divorce, you’ll file an Allocation of Parental Responsibility with the Court. In it, you’ll have all of the guidelines you need to parent with your former spouse and ensure your children are raised properly.

But, what is in the document? Below, we discuss this and more.

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Bird Nesting: 3 Tips To Make Co-Parenting Work After Divorce

Dividing up parental responsibility and parenting time with children in any separation is a challenge. Both spouses expectedly want to maximize time spent with their children and as such, find it difficult to work together. However, successful co-parenting, known these days as “Bird Nesting”, is essential for the well-being of your children, meaning you must find a way to make it work.

It may seem impossible to maintain a “good” relationship with your former spouse depending on your past relationship and the nature of your divorce in DuPage, Will, Kendall, or Kane County. Below, we share three tips to help you so that when it comes to following your Allocation Of Parental Responsibility Judgment and working through the minor issues that will arise, you aren’t left fighting with your ex-spouse at every turn.

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Child Visitation vs. Parenting Time: What to Expect from the New Laws

Before January 1, 2016, it was common for parents to seek “visitation” with their child(ren) as part of a divorce. But now, with the updated version of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution Of Marriage Act covers parenting time (IMDMA) in effect since January 1, 2016, there is no such thing as visitation any longer.

Instead, parents are granted “parenting time” with their child(ren).

As you can imagine, there is a difference between the two and it isn’t just the change of the term. In this article, we’ll discuss what the old law was, how the new law works, and relevant information you should know as to how parenting time is determined by the court in your divorce proceeding.

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