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DuPage County Attorneys

LOMBARD

900 E. Roosevelt Road, Lombard, IL 60148

Phone: 630-932-9100

BLOOMINGDALE

134 N. Bloomingdale Road, Bloomingdale, IL 60108

Phone: 630-529-4761

CHICAGO

105 W. Madison Street, Suite 2200, Chicago, IL 60602

Phone: 630-932-9100

NAPERVILLE

1730 Park Street, Suite 202, Naperville, IL 60563

Phone: 630-420-1000
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DuPage County family law attorneysAfter your divorce is finalized, you may be looking for a fresh start, perhaps in the form of a change of scenery. However, if you share children with your ex, relocating after your divorce is not as simple as picking a spot on the map. You should think carefully about whether the move is in your children’s best interests, and even if you decide that relocation is the right decision, there are important procedures you must follow to ensure your relocation is legal.

Possible Reasons for Relocation

Moving with your children after a divorce is a major decision that affects your entire family. However, there are situations in which it may make sense. For example, relocation can be a good decision if:

  • The move allows you to better provide for your children. You may have a good case for relocation if you are moving to accept a job offer that advances your career and increases your income, or to pursue higher education that increases your job opportunities.
  • The move allows you or your children to pursue an important opportunity. If the reason for your move is directly related to your children, perhaps to allow them to attend a better school or participate in a cherished extracurricular activity, you may have a good case that the move is in your children’s best interests.
  • The move brings you closer to extended family. Relocating closer to your family not only gives your children the opportunity to build stronger relationships with them, but may also give you access to a better support system that can assist in the raising of your children.
  • Your children are able to maintain their relationship with the other parent. Presuming that your ex is a fit parent, it is important that your relocation does not damage your children’s relationship with him or her. If you choose to move, you should work with your ex to update your parenting plan and arrange for regular travel so that your kids can still spend time with both of you.

Obtaining Approval for Relocation in Illinois

If you plan to move with your child out of state or at least 25 from your current home (50 miles, if you already live outside of the immediate Chicago area), you will likely need to obtain legal approval to do so. First, you must provide reasonable written notice to the other parent, usually at least 60 days before the move. From there, the best-case scenario is that your ex consents to the relocation and is willing to work with you on an updated parenting plan. However, if your ex does not consent, you will need to file a petition for relocation and demonstrate to the court that the move is in your children’s best interests.

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DuPage County divorce attorney parental alienation

Even under the very best of circumstances, the divorce experience can take a significant psychological toll on everyone involved. The emotional effects of the end of a marriage can become even more complicated when the divorcing couple shares children, as children can be especially sensitive to the overwhelming changes to their household and lifestyle.

Sadly, in cases of a contentious divorce, the conditions can sometimes turn toxic as parents succumb to parental alienation syndrome. This occurs when one parent turns the children against the other parent. This syndrome morphs into a pattern of habitual parent-child relationship sabotage, often resulting in short and long-term psychological damage to the kids.

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Naperville divorce lawyerAmong the many concerns divorcing parents have throughout the process of ending their marriage, establishing a solid parenting plan that equips them to effectively care for their children after the separation is often the most worrisome. This is particularly true for those experiencing a contentious divorce, as relationships with more tension tend to lead to major disagreements, especially when it comes to sensitive subjects like custody and parenting arrangements. However, creating a fair, realistic parenting plan that supports your children’s health and well-being is possible as long as you are able to keep things in perspective in the midst of your divorce.

Acting on Behalf of Your Children’s Best Interests

Checking in with yourself is key as you begin to work on constructing a parenting plan during your divorce. Here are three ways to help you determine whether or not your parenting plan arrangements truly have your children’s best interests at heart:

  1. Are you tuning into your emotions? - Even if your split is mostly amicable and you are able to communicate with the other parent civilly and respectfully, it is important to be aware that emotions can be deceiving, even under the very best of circumstances. Whether you harbor hostile feelings toward your ex-partner or not, feelings of grief and loss are common and inevitable parts of the divorce experience. It is not unusual for parents to make requests, demands, or modifications to a parenting plan when they are feeling vulnerable, resentful, or out of control. Ask yourself if the decisions you are making during the parenting plan agreement process are based on how you are currently feeling about your spouse and the end of the marriage, or if they reflect a genuine concern for how the arrangements will affect your children.
  2. Have you asked your children what they need? - Divorce psychology experts tell us that protection and autonomy are two primary needs that children have during a divorce. While both younger children and teens may have a difficult time articulating what they need from you during and after the separation, it is helpful to encourage them to communicate with you and ask them outright what you can do to help them get through this tough time. Psychologists emphasize that this does not mean parents should necessarily allow children to choose their new living arrangements or make other major decisions. This can be detrimental to their growth and mental health, and many are not mature enough to make such decisions. However, it is important to find out what they need, from their own point of view. This in turn can help you make the decisions for them, based on what you believe is best for them in the long run.
  3. Are you providing structure? - Kids also need a sense of structure throughout the divorce. Children rely on some sense of order to feel safe and free of anxiety. Review your parenting plan and ask yourself if the arrangements you are proposing offer your kids predictable, reliable routines they can count on. Children of all ages thrive on stability, and they need to know they will live in an environment that is nurturing and supportive, regardless of how their parents feel about one another.

Contact a DuPage County Divorce Lawyer

Drafting a perfect parenting plan is easier said than done. You may find that last-minute changes are necessary, and you may need to make further modifications if you discover over time that your original guidelines are problematic for the whole family. Wherever you are on the divorce journey, a competent Lombard, IL parenting plan attorney can help you finalize a plan that meets you and your children's needs. Speak with our knowledgeable team at Mevorah Law Offices LLC by calling us today at 630-755-6426. 

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Lombard child relocation attorney

The moment a couple decides to end their marriage, both spouses may face what feels like an endless list of challenges, especially if children are involved. Divorcing parents must address an entirely new set of concerns as they begin to navigate through different family structures and dynamics after the separation. Moving through the divorce process with children in the picture can be especially daunting, even for parents who are able to interact on a positive and productive level. The range of emotions experienced can be amplified in the wake of additional changes, such as relocation after the divorce.

Relieving Children’s Stress

No matter how amicable the decision to separate may be, it is inevitable for everyone involved to feel saddened by the dissolution of their family unit to some degree. For children who are used to living in the same home with both parents, it can be difficult for them to suddenly move. Deciding to relocate as a newly divorced parent is far from easy, but under certain circumstances, it may be necessary. Psychology experts report that the negative effects of divorce on children can be limited, depending on the other factors that are involved. Research shows that parents have the power to limit the extent of psychological harm to their kids after the divorce by choosing words and actions that support their children’s best interests. 

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Lombard family law attorneysThe U.S. Census Bureau reported that, as of 2011, 11.4 million married-couple households, or 21 percent of all married-couple households in America had at least one spouse born in another country. About 13 percent (7.3 million) of households had two foreign-born spouses, and 7 percent (4.1 million) had one native-born and one foreign-born spouse. With those numbers likely going up, along with it comes serious implications involving children, especially those involved in legal separation or divorce.

Taking Children Out of the Country

Generally, taking a minor child outside the country is not an issue if you have proper documentation to show the child is yours. In these ordinary cases, either parent may temporarily remove a minor child or children from the state and even travel with them outside the country for a vacation, family visit or other reasons. All that is necessary is for the parent to provide the other parent information as to where he or she is taking the child or children, how long they will be gone, and contact information.

Where things get complicated is when you are legally separated, going through divorce, or you are already divorced. In these situations, a parent attempting take a minor child outside the country must make sure they are doing so in compliance with Illinois family law statutes, as well as any other laws that may come into play, especially kidnapping laws. These regulations are in place to prevent international child abduction, as well as to ensure full protection and enforcement of a child custody order.

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