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What Issues Must Be Addressed in an Illinois Parenting Plan?

 Posted on October 20, 2020 in Child Custody

DuPage County parenting plan lawyerIf you are a parent who is getting divorced in Illinois, you will need to create a parenting plan or parenting agreement. According to Illinois law, parents must file a parenting plan within 120 days of filing for divorce. If they cannot agree on a parenting plan, they may each file their proposed plan separately from the other spouse. Parents who disagree may be able to negotiate a settlement through mediation or with help from their attorneys. If parents cannot reach an agreement, the court may need to intervene.

Parental Responsibilities and Parenting Time

You and your spouse will need to make determinations about child custody, which is now referred to as the allocation of parental responsibilities, and parenting time. Parental responsibilities refers to decision-making authority about children’s medical care, education, extracurricular activities, and religion. Parenting time refers to the days and times that a parent directly cares for the child. 

Creating a parenting time schedule is not as simple as it may initially seem. For example, you and your spouse may decide that one parent will have your child Monday through Thursday, and the other parent will have the child Friday through Monday. However, you will also need to account for issues such as holidays, family vacations, and who should watch the child when a parent cannot fulfill his or her parenting time obligations.  

Other Provisions That Must Be Included in Your Parenting Plan

You may include as much information as you want in your parenting plan. However, there are over a dozen concerns that must be specifically addressed. In addition to information about how you will divide parental responsibilities and parenting time, you will also need to address:

  • How you will handle any updates or modifications to the parenting plan

  • An identification of the parent who has the majority of parenting time (previously called the “custodial parent”)

  • How your child will be transported between your homes

  • How changes in residence or “parental relocations” will be handled

  • They type and frequency of communication a child should have with a parent during the other parent’s assigned parenting time

  • “The right of first refusal,” which refers to a parent’s right to care for a child if the parent who is assigned parenting time cannot fulfill his or her obligations

  • Each parent’s right to access the child’s medical, school, or extracurricular records

  • Each parent’s right to be notified about child-related emergencies

Contact a Wheaton Child Custody Lawyer

Reaching an agreement about the issues contained in your parenting plan can be difficult. For help negotiating parenting plan issues and addressing other child custody-related needs, contact the Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C. Call 630-462-9500 today and schedule a personalized consultation with our experienced DuPage County divorce attorneys.



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