Five Facts About Military Deployment and Parenting Time in Illinois
Divorced American military families face unique challenges when navigating issues regarding parenting responsibilities and parenting time. Arranging for the care of a child during deployment, ensuring the child can visit with extended family during deployment, and catching up on lost time when the parent returns are all things military parents in Illinois must manage.
Fortunately, Illinois law recognizes these challenges and allows for special accommodations. Here are five facts about military deployment and parenting time in Illinois.
Facts for Deployed Military Parents in Illinois
Military parents can request that courts allow for make-up parenting time before or after deployment. This must be in the best interests of the child, and the parents’ schedules and circumstances must allow for it. The court order will specify who must fulfill certain responsibilities. For example, if divorced parents live in different states, they will have to decide who is responsible for paying to transport the child from one state to the other.
Military parents can also request parenting time be scheduled while they are home on leave. Because service members do not always know when they will get leave, Illinois allows courts to prioritize service member cases so that deployed parents who receive leave on short notice are still able to see their children.
If the military parent is unavailable to attend court sessions during their deployment, no permanent changes to existing parenting time arrangements may be made. This prevents civilian parents from moving out of state with the child or trying to slip in other arrangements that would be unacceptable to the military parent, just because he or she is deployed. If they are able, service members are permitted to join court proceedings by phone or video call.
Deployed parents may be awarded electronic visitation so they can maintain their relationship with their children. Electronic visitation may take place via phone calls, video chats, or even shared time playing games together online.
Many service members assume that, during their deployment, their child must stay with the other parent. However, military parents can actually designate their parenting time to someone else while they are gone. This is especially important for a child who has a close relationship with a stepparent, grandparents, or other family members other than their civilian parent.
Schedule a Consultation with a Kane County Child Custody Attorney
At Shaw Family Law, P.C., we understand how important your relationship with your child is. That is why we advocate passionately on behalf of parents in the military who need to arrange special accommodations for parenting time and parental responsibilities. Work with an experienced St. Charles, IL parenting time attorney you can trust. Call our office at 630-584-5550 and schedule a free appointment with us today.