protecting you and your family as you journey through resolving your legal concerns

Our Empathetic Team Helps With All Legal Matters Involving a Child

Whether you are starting a difficult allocation of parental responsibilities (formerly known as custody) case, or in the middle of a contentious dispute, our legal team can help you resolve matters with as little conflict as possible. We are Shyama S. Parikh, P.C., a law firm serving clients throughout the Waukegan area with family law concerns. In addition to more than 40 years of combined experience, we offer the empathy you need and deserve during a challenging time.

What Is Allocation Of Parental Responsibilities?

As of January 1, 2016, Illinois family law statutes were changed and the word “custody” is no longer used. Parents are now allocated parental responsibilities, either primary or shared, regarding medical, education, religion, and activities of minor children. Either parent has the right to seek child support  as well as a contribution towards other expenses of the minor children such as medical, education, daycare, and activities. One of the factors the court considers is the parenting time allotted to each parent.

The parties are required to attend mediation if there is no agreement regarding the allocation of parental responsibilities. If mediation is unsuccessful, the court will likely appoint a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) or Child Representative (CR) to work with the family. If the parties cannot reach an agreement with the assistance of the GAL or CR, there will be a hearing/trial and the judge will make a decision.

Understanding Allocation Of Parental Responsibilities (Custody)

There are two forms of decision making in the state of Illinois when it comes to decisions in the area of medical, education, religion, and extra-curricular activities for minor children, either it will be shared or primary. There is no presumption favoring either one. In shared decision making, the parties must consult with each other and reach a decision together. If they cannot reach an agreement, they must attend mediation before appearing in court. In primary decision making, the parties must consult with each other and try to reach a decision together. If they cannot, that the parent who has the primary decision making authority in that specific topic area (medical, education, religion, extra-curricular activities) make the decision.

Allocation of Parenting Responsibilities can be modified within two year if there is serious endangerment, or after the passage of two years if it is in the best interests of the child.

Explaining Parenting Time (Formerly Known As Visitation)

Both parties are entitled to have time with the minor child(ren). Unless a parent poses a substantial danger to the child, they will likely get reasonable and liberal parenting time, which includes overnights. A schedule can be developed that works for both parents and the minor child(ren). Parents who have the minor child(ren) usually are responsible for taking them to their regularly scheduled activities as well as ensuring homework is completed in a timely fashion.

Parenting time can be modified if it is in the best interests of the minor children. The court order can also contain provisions regarding transportation responsibilities of the minor child(ren.)

What If I Need To Relocate?

Relocation, formerly known as Removal, is moving a minor child more than 25 miles from the residence where they spend a majority of their time. Relocation is very difficult to obtain. However, it is happening more often due to employment and/or remarriage. Whether a parent has primary or shared allocation of parental responsibilities, they do not automatically have the right to move the child more than 25 miles without following the very detailed guidelines and notice provisions in the statute.

We have successfully litigated cases where clients have been able to move their child(ren) and have also prevented the relocation of their child(ren) from Illinois. The process takes a substantial amount of time and a considerable financial investment.

Speak With An Empathetic Lawyer About Your Children

There is nothing more important to you than your children. We understand, and agree. That is why we always treat you with compassion, respect, and empathy. When you are ready, schedule your free initial consultation. Call 847-557-1517 or send us an email.