If you have a child with someone and your romantic relationship ends, you must figure out who is going to be responsible for your child moving forward, and when. If you and your ex are unable to work out a suitable arrangement and parenting plan on your own, you may decide to ask the court to do it for you. In making decisions about parenting time and parental responsibilities, Illinois courts consider a similar set of variables.
When allocating parenting time and parental responsibilities, expect the court to give consideration to the following areas, among others. Keep in mind that the factors the court considers may also fluctuate based on the age of the child in question.
The wishes of both parents and the child
When possible, family courts try to accommodate the wishes of the entire family. If your child is of an age where he or she has an opinion about where to live, this may affect a court’s final decision.
How much time each parent devotes to child-rearing
The amount of time and attention you and your ex give to your son or daughter and have given historically may also help determine parental responsibilities. The court looks back on the last 24 months when assessing how much attention you and your ex devoted to your child.
The distance between parental residences
The geographic location of each parent’s home may also have a hand in decisions regarding parenting time. Whether it is realistic for both parents to transport the child from one home to the other may also help determine such arrangements.