Modifying a Parenting Plan in Illinois
Over time, circumstances change between parents that require a parenting plan to be modified. These circumstances can include a job change, an increase in workload, or even moving to a different state or city. A parenting plan can only be modified by a court order. In Illinois, parenting plans may be modified by the court whenever there has been a change in circumstances that require a modification, and it would be in the child's best interest.
When determining whether a modification is in the child's best interest, a court will consider several factors, including:
- Wishes of the child;
- Child's adjustment to his or her home;
- The mental and physical health of all individuals involved;
- Wishes of the parents;
- The child's needs;
- The distance between the parents' residences, the cost and difficulty of transporting the child, each parent's and child's daily schedules, and the ability of the parents to cooperate in the arrangement;
- The willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and child;
- The physical violence or threat of physical violence in the home;
- The occurrence of abuse against the child or other household members;
- Whether one parent is a sex offender and if so, what treatment that parent has successfully participated in;
- Any other factor the court finds relevant.
Additionally, parents need to show a change in circumstances from the last parenting plan that seeks to show modification is necessary, although this requirement may not be necessary in certain cases. A court may grant a modification in the following cases where there is no change in circumstances:
- The modification reflects the actual arrangement under which the child has been receiving care for the last 6 months, without parental objection;
- The modification constitutes a minor modification in the parenting plan or allocation judgment;
- The modification is necessary to modify an agreed parenting plan or allocation judgement that the court would not have ordered or approved; or
- The parties agree to the modification
- If parents agree to a modified parenting plan, a court will approve the order unless it is not in the child's best interest. However, if parents cannot reach an agreement on their own, a court will determine whether or not a modification to the parenting agreement is in the child's best interest.
Modifying a parenting plan varies on a case-by-case basis and courts will consider the facts and circumstances of each scenario. If you wish to modify your parenting plan, please speak with attorney at Lafata Law. For a free consultation, please call 630-481-6633.