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Palatine Child Relocation Lawyer

Inverness post-divorce relocation attorney

Family Law Attorneys for Relocation of Custodial Parents in Northwest Cook County

A divorce requires a family to go through many changes, and both parents and children may struggle to adjust to their new reality. If one parent decides to move to a new home during or after their divorce, this can inflame a situation that is already difficult, leading to highly contentious disputes between parents. For people on either side of these types of conflicts, it is essential to work with an experienced lawyer. 

At A. Traub & Associates, our family law attorneys can provide you with strong representation, whether you are planning to move to a new home or wish to stop your children from being moved away from you. We will make sure you understand your rights and guide you through the legal process, working to protect your children's best interests and your relationship with them.

Parental Relocation Under Illinois Law

After a couple separates, their children will usually split their time between the parents' homes. Due to the limited time each parent will have with their children, they may be resistant to any changes to the parenting time schedule that would not be in their favor. Regardless of the reason for a parent's plans to move, the other parent may dispute this move if they believe it would negatively affect their relationship with their children.

While a parent's choice to move with their children can lead to disagreements between ex-spouses, a move can only be disputed if it falls under the definition of "relocation" in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. The law specifies three situations that may be considered relocation:

  1. A move to a new residence that is over 25 miles away from a residence in Cook, DuPage, Lake, Mchenry, Kane, Lake, or Will County.
  2. A move to a new residence that is over 50 miles away from a residence in another county in Illinois.
  3. A move to a new residence outside the state of Illinois that is over 25 miles away from a residence in Illinois.

If a parent's planned move does not fall under these criteria, they will be allowed to move without the need to obtain the permission of the other parent or the court. However, if the parent who has the majority of the parenting time (often referred to as the custodial parent) is planning a move that meets one of these criteria, they must obtain the permission of the court, even if the other parent agrees to the move.

A parent who intends to relocate must notify the other parent at least 60 days prior to the planned move date, and their notification must state the date the move will take place and the address of the new residence. If the move will only be temporary, the notification should also state the dates when the parent will be residing at the new home. This notification must also be filed in the applicable circuit court.

If the other parent does not dispute the relocation, they may sign the relocation notice before it is filed with the court. The move will be allowed, and the parent's parenting plan will be modified accordingly, as long as the court determines that these changes are in the children's best interests.

If the parents are not in agreement about the move or the proposed modifications to the parenting plan, the parent who plans to move must file a petition for permission to relocate. In these cases, a judge will decide whether to grant permission for the relocation and determine how to modify the parenting plan. 

As with other child-related disputes during or after divorce, a judge's decisions will be based on what is in the children's best interests. They will consider a number of factors when making these decisions, including:

  • The reasons the parent plans to move, the reasons the other parent objects to the move, and the child's wishes.
  • Each parent's current and past relationship with their child, looking specifically at whether a parent has not exercised their parental responsibilities as described in the parenting plan.
  • The educational opportunities that are available to the child and the presence of any extended family members at the current residence and the proposed new residence.
  • How to create reasonable arrangements for the allocation of parental responsibilities and parenting time that will minimize the negative impact of the move on parent-child relationships.

Contact an Arlington Heights Family Law Attorney

A parent's decision to move with their child is usually not made lightly, and along with the practical concerns that come with changing one's residence, it is also important to ensure that the correct legal steps are followed. If you are planning to move, or if you want to ensure that your ex-spouse's relocation will not affect your relationship with your children, contact A. Traub & Associates today at 847-749-4182. We represent clients in Rolling Meadows, Palatine, Schaumburg, Mt. Prospect, Hoffman Estates, Inverness, Arlington Heights, Wheeling, Long Grove, Des Plaines, Buffalo Grove, Elk Grove Village, and throughout Northwest Cook County.

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