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Posted on in Visitation

DuPage County visitation lawyers, grandparent visitation, Illinois divorce, visitation requestIllinois’ Grandparent Visitation Act provides grandparents with a limited right to request visitation with their grandchild. Unlike visitation granted to a parent, the law makes it clear that grandparent visitation is a privilege, not a right.

Under the law, grandparents, great-grandparents, and siblings have the right to ask a court for visitation; however, the court may refuse visitation. Most times, grandparents receive less visitation than parents. For this reason, it worth trying to discuss visitation with the custodial parent. However, it may not always be possible to come to an agreement. If you are a grandparent considering a request for visitation, then it is important that you understand how the court will analyze your request.  

Steps to Take When Pursuing Visitation 

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Posted on in Visitation

DuPage County family law attorney, visitation orderWhen a child is involved in a divorce, one of the most important aspects of the final decree is child custody and visitation rights. However, sometimes a parent will not abide by a visitation schedule, and enforcement of the visitation order becomes necessary. The law provides a way for a parent with visitation rights to enforce the order and see his or her child.

Petitioning the Court 

One option for enforcing a visitation order is to mediate the issue with a neutral third party. However, if mediation is unsuccessful or not an option in your situation then you can petition the court for enforcement of your visitation order. Illinois law, specifically 750 ILCS 5/607.1, dictates the procedure for petitioning the court to enforce your right to visitation as well as the penalties involved for a violation of a visitation order. 

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Posted on in Child Custody

DuPage County family law attorneys, removal of a childChildren of divorce cannot freely travel between states like the children of married parents. Custodial parents who wish to move their child outside of the state, or even remove them temporarily, must get permission from the court first. In addition, the parent must demonstrate to the court that the removal is in the best interests of the child or provide some type of guarantee that the child will return.

Illinois Removal Law

Under 750 ILCS 5/609 of Illinois law, the court may allow any custodial party to remove their child or children from the state of Illinois if it is in the best interests of the child or children. In order to be granted approval, the party seeking removal must show that this is, in fact, in the best interests of the child or children. 

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child custody, no court order, DuPage County family lawyersUsually, when a couple with children divorces, a custody order is issued by a judge as part of their marriage dissolution process. Yet, if you were never married to the father of your child, and you are now separated, it is very likely that there is no formal custody agreement. However, this does not necessarily mean that both parents have joint custody rights. If your ex is trying to take your child from you, you should seek immediate help from an experienced child custody lawyer.

In most cases, if your child has been living with you, you are automatically considered to have legal custody. You do not need a court order saying that you are the custodial parent. Even if your child’s father has had his paternity legally established, either by voluntarily signing an agreement, or by being proven to be the father in court proceedings, this does not mean that he has custody of your child, even jointly.

Child Abduction by a Father

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college contributionTraditional child support lasts until the child becomes 18 or is otherwise emancipated. In Illinois, however, child support technically continues in many cases in the form of college contribution. Although college contribution isn’t mandatory like traditional child support payments, it is frequently awarded in Illinois divorce cases and is something every divorcee with kids reaching the age of 18 should understand.

Applicable Law

Judges in Illinois are allowed to award support for educational expenses of non-minors, which may include the costs of college, costs of other professional or technical schools, or for children 19 or older that are still in high school. Although the decision to award this support is discretionary, judges are guided by four major factors in the decision making process. As designated in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA), those four factors are:

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parenting time, parenting, children of divorce, child custody, shared parenting, life after divorceA recently published article discussed the problem that some parents face in child custody disputes and the changes that some are calling for in order to level the playing field. Many parents who are involved in divorce cases where children are involved face the possibility of a diminished parent-child relationship. The parent who is not the custodial parent often becomes just a visitor in the eyes of the family. Because of this perceived inequity, many parents who lose out on significant time with their children are trying to make changes to the legal process.

Shared Parenting

Advocates of equal parenting time are trying to get legislation passed that would divide custodial time more fairly between both parents. Their position is that children are better served when they spend equal time with both of their parents. These parents are against laws that would award custody to one parent over another, except in cases where one of the parents is deemed by the court to be unfit. Their proposed legislation would include a clause that mandates both parents get a minimum percentage of parenting time with their children each week.

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child support payment, modification of child support, Illinois family law attorney, divorceMany people who have been through a child custody and support proceeding breathe a sigh of relief when the process is over. It is often a long, stressful, and emotional time for all parties involved. However, there are times when the issue deserves to be revisited, since a child support obligation may need to be changed for one reason or another. Illinois law provides for the modification of child support payments when a specified standard is met under certain circumstances.

Circumstances Change

The main reason that a party asks the court to change an award of child support is because something changed either for the non-custodial parent, the custodial parent, or the child. In order to consider a request for modification of a previously awarded child support payment, the law in the state of Illinois requires that the party seeking the modification demonstrates a significant change in circumstances since the time of the last child support order.

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child support, remarriage, second marriage, step family, DuPgae County family lawAfter a divorce, it is common for the former spouse to pay child support, alimony or sometimes both. What happens when one spouse remarries? Remarriage can have an affect on the duration and amount of child support payments the custodial parent (the parent who has primary custody of the child) receives. Therefore, it is worth considering all of the legal consequences before entering into a new marriage.

How is Child Support Calculated in Illinois?

Child support laws are governed by the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. The Act describes specific child support guidelines that the courts must follow to determine how much child support must be paid to the custodial parent. Typically, the amount of child support is calculated by the non-custodial parent’s (the parent who does not have legal custody of the child) net income and the number of children he/she is responsible for. The court is also allowed to consider other factors such as:

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Posted on in Divorce

child custody, relocation, children of divorce, child of divorce, Illinois divorce lawThe dissolution of a marriage can bring with it a number of significant life changes. After divorce, one of the spouses may wish to relocate in order to get a fresh start. Normally, this would not pose a problem, but for an ex-spouse with children, it may not be as easy. Depending on what their child custody plan provides for, a parent may have to follow certain requirements set by law in Illinois in order to permanently or temporarily remove their children from a certain jurisdiction. Parent’s Rights In general, custody plans designate one parent as custodial and the other as non-custodial, even if both parents share time with the children. In fact, the custody plan itself may speak to the issue of removing or relocating the children out of state. Otherwise, Illinois law states that a custodial parent is able to relocate, either permanently or temporarily, with their children as long as they provide the non-custodial parent with advance and sufficient notice of their plans. The non-custodial parent may agree with the move; in that case, the parents may be able to reach an agreement outside of court. If the non-custodial parent is against the move, the custodial parent must ask the court’s permission to relocate. It is important to note that according to Illinois law, a custodial parent does not need a court order to relocate with their children within the state. As long as the move will not affect the non-custodial parent’s visitation schedule, a relocation should be allowed without court involvement or a change to the terms of the custody plan. Illinois Law on Out of State Removal In situations where the parents do not agree about relocation, the law provides protection of a non-custodial parent’s right to have regular visits with their children. In order to procure an order from the court allowing a parent to remove their minor children outside the state of Illinois, certain standards must be met. A custodial parent seeking the court’s permission to relocate must prove that removal is in the child’s best interests, and also must demonstrate an important reason for the move. Important reasons may include a new job prospect or access to certain necessary services that are only available outside the state, such as specific medical treatment. In considering whether the move is in the child’s best interests, the court will consider the following factors, among others:

  • Whether the move will enhance the quality of life for the parent and child;
  • The motives of the parent seeking to relocate;
  • The motives of the non-custodial parent in opposing the move;
  • The custody schedule currently in place;
  • If a realistic visitation schedule can be followed if the move is allowed;
  • The effect the move will have on the non-custodial parent’s visitation;
  • Any potential harm to the child if the move affects the child’s relationship with the non-custodial parent;
  • If it is impossible to reach a reasonable visitation schedule; and
  • The overall effect of the non-custodial parent not participating in the child’s life on a daily basis.

Child Custody Attorney If you are considering relocating with your children, or have been served with a relocation request as a non-custodial parent, it is important to seek help from an experienced professional. Contact the family law attorneys at Davi Law Group, LLC today for a consultation. We serve clients in DuPage, Cook, Will, Kane and Kendall Counties.

child support IMAGEFollowing a divorce or separation by parents, a court in Illinois may grant sole physical custody to one party. This parent is usually referred to as the “custodial”parent, and the non-custodial parent will usually still have visitation rights. In most cases children will spend far more time with a custodial parent, and that parent will have more obligations to provide proper care.

 In most situations, the court will also order the non-custodial parent to pay child support to their former partner to help cover childcare expenses. This is logical, as the custodial parent will likely be paying out much more in expenses for child-rearing, and the child support payments will help balance the costs between both parents. But is it possible for the court to order the custodial parent to pay child support to the non-custodial parent? Yes, at least according to an important Illinois appellate family law case last year.  Child Support Decision

Late last year, an Illinois Appellate Court issued an opinion in the case of In re Marriage of Turk. The case originally involved a court order that required a custodial father to pay the non-custodial mother $600 per month in child support. The court was influenced by the fact that the father earned roughly $150,000 per year while the mother earned $10,000 or less.

 The father appealed the decision, arguing, in part, that the relevant Illinois child custody law (Section 505 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (the Act) (750 ILCS5/505) did not allow the court to order the custodial parent to pay support to the non-custodial parent.

There were many ancillary issues discussed by the court in it opinion. However, with regard to the possibility of an award of child support to the non-custodial parent, the appellate court found that it was within state law for the father to be ordered to pay child support. The court noted that this step might be appropriate when both parents have significant parenting time (though not necessarily equal), both incur significant childcare expenses, and there is sizeable income disparity between the two parties.

 Ultimately, the court ordered the matter back to the trial court for procedural problems with the calculation of the exact child support award. However, the precedent was set in this appellate district for non-custodial parents to receive child support in certain cases.  Complex Child Support Issues As this case demonstrates, child support matters in Illinois can become quite complex, with determinations hinging on many different factors. In addition, Illinois courts are not exactly clear on the different facets of these issues, such as child support obligations of custodial parents. As always, it is critical to have the tailored advice of a family law attorney to understand your options. For help in DuPage County or surrounding suburbs contact Davi Law Group today.
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