Family Law

DuPage County Parenting Time LawyerWhat used to be called "visitation" is now called "parenting time" in Illinois law. When an unmarried couple has a child or a married couple with children divorces, the parents describe the parenting time schedule in their parenting plan.

Reaching a parenting schedule that works for both parents and meets the child's needs is not easy. It is important to take the time to get it right. Here are five questions that parents should ask themselves when developing a parenting time schedule.

DuPage County Family LawyerIf you are going through the process of getting a divorce and your spouse is abusive, you may be wondering if you need an order of protection. An order of protection is a court order that can help keep you and your children safe from abuse or threats. Sadly, abusive relationships tend to escalate when the abuse victim tries to leave the relationship. An order of protection may require your spouse to vacate your home, leave you and your children alone, and cease contact with you.

What Is an Order of Protection?

An order of protection is a legal document issued by a judge that orders someone to stay away from another person or their family. The document includes specific instructions about what the other person must do (or not do) in order to comply with the court’s order. This could include staying away from the other person’s home or workplace, refraining from contacting them via phone or email, surrendering firearms, and more. Violating any of the protective order’s terms is a criminal offense. If the abuser violates the order of protection by contacting the victim, visiting a prohibited residence or workplace, or otherwise violating a provision in the order, he or she is subject to arrest.

DuPage County Family Law AttorneyThe phrase “the child’s best interests” is repeated multiple times throughout Illinois family law. When an Illinois court makes a decision about a child-related legal matter such as a divorce or child custody dispute, the court prioritizes the child’s best interests above all else. But what does this phrase mean? What does the court consider when assessing what is in the child’s best interests?

Best Interest Factors in Illinois Law

When the court is evaluating a family law case involving a child, there are specific factors the court will consider. These factors include:

DuPage County Family Law AttorneyDivorcing spouses have many additional issues to consider when they share children. In Illinois, divorcing parents are asked to provide a “parenting plan” to the court. This plan provides the basis for the child custody arrangement after the split is finalized. Developing a parenting plan is rarely simple, and there are seemingly countless factors to consider. If you are a parent who plans to divorce soon, make sure you understand your obligations and rights regarding the parenting plan.

Deadline for Filing a Parenting Plan

Illinois law allows parents 120 days to file a parenting plan after the divorce petition is filed. If the parents can agree on the provisions of the parenting plan, they can simply submit the plan directly to the court. If they do not agree, the court may require them to attend mediation. During mediation, the couple works with a trained mediator in hopes of reaching a compromise on the disputed provisions. If parents cannot reach an agreement during mediation or through their respective attorneys, the court may make a ruling deciding on the unresolved issues.  

Naperville Family Law AttorneyIllinois uses the term "parenting time" instead of "visitation" when referring to the time a parent spends with his or her child. Divorced spouses and unmarried co-parents must contend with several complex issues. Determining a parenting time schedule is often of the most challenging aspects of a shared custody arrangement. This is especially true if a parent has an unpredictable work schedule or if parents disagree about how to share time with their children. If you are a parent currently going through a divorce or separation, consider the following factors when designing your parenting time schedule. 

Reaching an Out-Of-Court Agreement Regarding Parenting Time 

The amount of parenting time each parent has can be decided by the parents or ordered by a judge, depending on the circumstances of each case. If parents can reach an agreement about parenting time and other matters, they can save themselves the time, expense, and stress of going to court. Parents who are able to communicate and cooperate with one another are more likely to be successful in reaching an agreement about parenting time. 

Recent Blog Posts



address1700 Park St., Suite 203F, Naperville, IL 60563
hoursEvenings and Weekends by Appointment