When parents get divorced, they are encouraged to work together to build a parenting plan that describes child custody arrangements. Parents who negotiate an agreement about the allocation of parental responsibilities and parenting time can avoid the stress and expense of child custody litigation. If you are getting divorced and you and your spouse are struggling with custody decisions, consider working with a mediator or family law attorney who can help you negotiate an agreement.
Parenting Agreements in Illinois
There is no one-size-fits-all parenting plan, but there are certain elements that are typically included in Illinois parenting plans. These elements can help ensure that the plan is comprehensive and meets the needs of both parents and children.
A comprehensive parenting plan should address:
- Allocation of parental responsibilities - Parental responsibilities refer to the parents' authority to make decisions about the child's education, extracurricular activities, healthcare, and religious upbringing. In some cases, one parent has full authority to make any and all significant decisions about the child, such as where the child goes to school or the types of medical treatments the child receives. In other cases, parents divide or share parental responsibilities. For example, one parent may make decisions about the child's education while the other parent makes decisions about the child's healthcare.
- Parenting time schedule - The parenting time schedule outlines when the child will be with each parent. Parents should be sure to include information about parenting time on holidays, school vacations, birthdays, and in other special circumstances.
- The right of first refusal - The right of first refusal is a provision that allows one parent to have the first opportunity to care for the child if the other parent is unavailable. This can be helpful in situations where one parent works long hours or frequently travels for work.
- Transportation arrangements - Parents should include detailed transportation arrangements in their parenting plan. This can help avoid conflict and confusion about who is responsible for picking up and dropping off the child.
- Communication plan - Parents should develop a communication plan to ensure that they can easily communicate with each other about their child. This may include using a parenting app, scheduling regular phone calls, or sending emails or text messages.
- Resolution of conflict - Parents should include a plan for how they will resolve disagreements or proposed modifications to the parenting agreement. This may involve working with a mediator or family law attorney.
The above are just some of the elements that can be included in an Illinois parenting plan. It is important to tailor the parenting plan to the specific needs of the parents and children involved.
Contact a St. Charles Child Custody Lawyer
Our Kane County family law attorneys understand that creating a comprehensive parenting plan can be complicated and frustrating. We are here to help. Call 630-584-5550 to reach Shaw Sanders, P.C. and schedule a free consultation....