Did you know that changes to Illinois law concerning child custody and visitation have been in effect since last year? While the changes to the law will not result in major changes to custody and visitation arrangements, it is important to understand how these revisions may affect your child custody case. An experienced Arlington Heights child custody lawyer at SAM LAW OFFICE, LLC can speak with you today about your case and can answer any questions you might have.
Why were changes made to Illinois family law? In brief, lawmakers revised the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (750 ILCS 5/) in order to reflect the changing needs of families in Arlington Heights and throughout the state of Illinois. The language of “child custody” in the statute has been changed to “parental responsibilities,” while the language of “visitation” in the statute has been changed to “parenting time.”
Lawmakers recognized that child custody and visitation are not terms that reflect a close and personal relationship between parent and child. As such, the revisions to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) are designed so that the court can allocate a wide variety of parenting responsibilities either solely or jointly. To be clear, parental responsibilities like education, religious upbringing, healthcare and extracurricular activities can now be separated, and one parent can be responsible for the educational decisions concerning the child, while the other can be responsible for the decisions about the child’s religious upbringing.
What factors will go into the court’s decision when it allocates parental responsibilities? According to the IMDMA, the court still will make a determination about what kind of arrangement is in the best interests of the child, and the court may consider a wide variety of factors including but not limited to:
As you can see, there are many factors that can be taken into account when allocating parental responsibilities. If you have questions, you should speak with an Arlington Heights child custody lawyer as soon as possible.
While the allocation of parental responsibilities is intended to develop better relationships among parents and children in the aftermath of divorce, the new law can be quite complex. It is important to speak with an experienced Arlington Heights family law attorney about your case. One of our advocates can answer your questions today. Contact SAM LAW OFFICE, LLC for more information.