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St. Charles Child Custody Lawyers

Kane County Parenting Plan Lawyers

Experienced Kane County Family Law Attorneys for Child Custody Cases

Few parents want to give up any of their rights regarding their child, whether it is where the child spends major holidays or how often the parent gets to tuck the child into bed at night. Yet in cases of divorce, parents are forced to make these hard choices and develop a plan to divide parenting responsibilities.

Having helped hundreds of clients through the difficult decisions of divorce, the lawyers of Weiler & Associates, Inc. stand ready to assist you with the challenging choices that you now face in designing your post-divorce parenting plan. We devote our legal practice entirely to divorce and family law, so we can offer experience-based insight on the parenting plan options that are likely to work best for your particular circumstances. We will also help you understand the implications of your parenting plan choices, which can have a significant impact on your financial child support obligations.

What Is Included in an Illinois Parenting Plan?

When a divorce involves minor children, Illinois law encourages parents to negotiate their own parenting plan that defines:

  • Which parent will have primary physical care (custody) of a child or if the parents will have shared physical care with each parent having at least 146 overnights with a child.
  • The allocation of parenting time, that is, the schedule that defines how a child's time will be divided between the parents.
  • The allocation of major decision-making responsibilities about a child's education, healthcare, religious upbringing, and extracurricular activities. Each of these four types of decisions can be assigned to one parent or shared jointly.

The Value of Negotiating Your Parenting Plan

Once the court signs off on your parenting plan, it will become part of your divorce decree and will be legally binding and enforceable.

Because priority is given to the best interests of the child, including stability, the courts are reluctant to modify parenting orders unless there has been a change in circumstances that necessitates the modification. Therefore, it is very important to make well-considered decisions about these matters before your parenting plan is finalized.

If you cannot agree on a parenting plan, the court will make the necessary decisions. You could be stuck with those decisions for a long time, because it is relatively hard to appeal a family court decision to a higher court and win.

Court-Issued Allocation Judgment of Parental Responsibilities

When parents cannot reach agreement on parenting issues, the court will intervene by recommending resolutions in a judicial settlement conference, ordering mediation, and/or holding hearings at which both parties can present arguments and the court will decide. The court's decisions on parenting responsibilities will be documented in an allocation judgment.

Illinois divorce law 750 ILCS 5/602.5-602.7 requires the court to make decisions based on the best interests of the child and lists the factors the court must consider, including but not limited to:

  • The wishes of each parent.
  • The wishes of the child.
  • The child's adjustment to their home, school, and community.
  • The mental and physical health of both parents and the child.
  • The willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child.
  • Any prior agreement or course of conduct between the parents related to child caretaking functions or decision-making.
  • The distance between the parents' residences, the cost and difficulty of transporting the child, each parent's and the child's daily schedules, and the ability of the parents to cooperate in the arrangement.

Our Role as Your Attorneys in Parenting Plan Decisions

The attorneys of Weiler & Associates, Inc. will provide sound legal counsel and support in matters of:

Child Custody and Parenting Plan Lawyers in St. Charles, Illinois

Weiler & Associates, Inc. is a divorce and family law firm that prioritizes responsiveness to our clients and dedication to achieving our client's goals. Contact us in our St. Charles office at 630-331-9110. We serve clients in Kane County including the communities of Batavia, Elgin, Geneva, Pingree Grove, and St. Charles.

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