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How Are Child Custody and Parenting Time Addressed in a Parenting Plan?

 Posted on June 25, 2021 in Child Custody

naperville child custody lawyerIn divorce and family law cases involving children, it is usually assumed that both parents will continue to play an active role in their children’s lives. Parents will need to work together to provide for their children’s needs, and as part of their divorce decree or child custody order, they will be required to create a parenting plan. This document will set down all of the decisions that are made about how parents will share custody of their children, and it will be a legally binding court order that they will both be required to follow. By understanding the issues addressed in their parenting plan, parents can ensure that they know their rights and responsibilities toward their children.

Allocation of Parental Responsibilities

Some of the key issues that a parenting plan will address will involve the parents’ responsibilities in making decisions about how their children will be raised. Illinois law specifies that parents may divide or share decision-making responsibilities in the areas of education, healthcare, religion, and extracurricular activities. In many cases, parents will share these responsibilities equally, but depending on the roles that each parent has played when making decisions for their children in the past and the parents’ ability to work together to make these decisions, different areas of responsibility may be allocated solely or primarily to one parent.

Parenting Time Schedules and Related Terms

What is sometimes referred to as physical custody or visitation is known in Illinois as parenting time. A parenting plan will fully detail the amount of time children will spend in each parent’s care, either by including a schedule for parenting time or a formula to be used to determine how parenting time will be allocated. A parenting time schedule should specify when children will be staying at each parent’s home on weekdays and weekends during the school year, and it should also address days that fall outside of that regular schedule, including school vacations, major holidays, and any other special days, such as children’s or parents’ birthdays.

A parenting plan should also address any other rules or issues related to parenting time. To avoid confusion or disputes about transportation or travel arrangements, the plan should detail when parents are responsible for picking up or dropping off children at the beginning or end of their parenting time. It should also address the proper times and methods of communication between parents and children. Parents may also decide to include the right of first refusal, which will require a parent who is unavailable during their scheduled parenting time to contact the other parent and see if they are available before making other childcare arrangements.

Contact Our Naperville Parenting Plan Attorneys

Your parenting plan will govern how you and your ex will work together to raise your children. You will want to be sure you fully understand your rights, the requirements you must meet, and the terms that should be included to prevent disputes or other issues. At Pesce Law Group, P.C., our attorneys can help you draft and negotiate a parenting plan that will allow you to provide for your children’s needs. We will advocate for your children’s best interests throughout the legal process. To set up a free consultation with a DuPage County child custody lawyer, contact our office at 630-352-2240.



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