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How Will Parental Relocation Affect My Parenting Plan?

Posted on in Relocation

Naperville IL family law lawyerFollowing your divorce, it is likely that you or your ex-spouse will plan to move to a new home at some point. This is a normal activity, and a relocation may be planned for multiple reasons, such as to begin a new job, to be closer to family or a new partner, or to live in a larger, more comfortable home. However, parents should be aware that a move may require them to make changes to their parenting plan, and in certain cases, they will need to get approval from the court to complete a parental relocation.

When Is Approval Required for Parental Relocation?

A move to a new home is only considered parental relocation if a parent who has the majority of parenting time or shares equal amounts of parenting time plans to move to a new home a certain distance away from the child’s current home. For those who live in counties around the Chicago area (Cook, DuPage, Kane, Will, Lake, or McHenry), a move of at least 25 miles will be considered a relocation. Relocation rules will also apply to a move of 50 miles or more from another Illinois county or a move of at least 25 miles to a location outside of Illinois.

At least 60 days before moving, or at the earliest practical date within 60 days, a parent must notify the other parent and the court where their divorce case was heard. If the other parent does not object to the relocation, and a judge agrees that the move would be in the child’s best interests, the relocation will be approved. If the other parent objects, a court hearing will be held, and the judge will decide whether to grant the move based on a consideration of several factors, including the reasons for the planned move, the reasons the other parent is objecting, the ways the move is expected to affect the child, and whether changes can be made to the parenting plan that will minimize the negative effects on parent-child relationships.

Making Changes to a Parenting Plan

Parents are required to receive court approval for a relocation to ensure that any modifications made to their parenting plan are in their child’s best interests. In some cases, these modifications may be minimal, and parents may still share similar parental responsibilities and parenting time as before the move. However, long-distance moves are likely to require significant changes to these arrangements, and this could result in changes to the relationships between the child and both parents.

For example, if a parent plans to move with their child to a new state and the child will be living there during the school year, that parent may believe they should have sole responsibility over educational decisions. Parenting time schedules may also need to be adjusted, and to ensure that a child has enough time with the non-moving parent, that parent may be granted additional parenting time on weekends or during school vacations. It may also be a good idea to update the rules for when children will communicate with a parent during the other parent’s parenting time. Modifications can be made upon the agreement of both parents, perhaps with the assistance of mediation, or they can be ordered by the court when parents are unable to agree.

Contact Our DuPage County Parental Relocation Lawyers

If you are planning to move to a new home, or if you want to protect your parental rights when your ex is moving, the lawyers of Calabrese Associates, P.C. can help you address your legal concerns. We will provide you with representation in court hearings, and we will fight to make sure your children’s best interests are protected. Contact our Naperville parenting plan modification attorneys today at 630-393-3111.

 

Sources:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/075000050K609.2.htm

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=075000050K600

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