When you have a child with someone in Illinois and you no longer share a romantic relationship with that person, you may need the state to allocate parenting time on your behalf. When making decisions about parenting time and parental responsibilities, Illinois strives to act in a way that serves and prioritizes your child’s best interests.
Per the Illinois General Assembly, you may be able to avoid having the courts allocate parenting time on your behalf by instead submitting a parenting plan outlining the arrangement to which you and your ex agree. If you and your ex are unable to come to terms about parenting time and related issues, expect the courts to consider the following factors when doing so.
The wishes of all involved
Your own desires and those of your ex and, possibly, your child all carry weight in a parenting time case. Whether your child’s wishes come into play generally depends on his or her age and level of maturity.
Each parent’s previous contributions
The court may also consider how much time you and your ex devoted to child-rearing during the two years preceding your case. If you were the main caretaker during this time, this may boost your chances of securing parenting time and parental responsibilities.
Whether restrictions are appropriate
If either parent has any history of violence or abuse, this may, too, help courts make decisions about parenting time.
While these are some of the variables Illinois courts typically review when making decisions about your child’s future, many other considerations may also come into play in this type of case.