Orland Park, IL Divorce Attorneys for Custodial Parent Relocation Matters
Child Issues in Divorce Lawyers in Will County
When custodial parents wish to move out of state with their children for employment opportunities or personal reasons, they cannot simply pack up and go. In Illinois, the custodial parent must have a court order to legally relocate to another state. Obtaining such a court order can be difficult depending on the circumstances. At the Illinois family law firm of Kezy & Associates, we are experienced in handling both sides of relocation cases. Whether you would like to relocate with your child or you would like to prevent your child from being taken to another state, our Will County divorce lawyers can help advocate for your interests in court.
How Courts Make Relocation Decisions in Illinois
In Illinois, the best interests of the child are paramount in every child custody dispute. There is a specific statute for out of state removals (750 ILCS 5/609(a). According to this statute, if a custodial parent wishes to take their child away from the other parent and relocate to another state, the burden of proof is on the custodial parent to show that such a move would be in the best interests of the child. While moving to take a job, pursue a romantic interest, or be closer to family may be in the parent’s interest, that does not necessarily make the case for it being in the child’s best interest as well. Courts generally put a high priority on preserving a child’s relationship with a non-custodial parent when the non-custodial parent is involved in the child’s life.
Petitions for child removals are heard on a case by case basis, and the court considers numerous factors in making its determination, including:
- If quality of life for both the relocating parent and the child will improve;
- Motives of the custodial parent for seeking the removal;
- Motives of the non-custodial parent for opposing the move;
- Current visitation rights of non-custodial parent;
- Whether reasonable visitation can be accomplished after the move; and
- Possible harm to child from diminished involvement with the non-custodial parent.
If you are interested in relocating with your child to another state or you wish to prevent your co-parent from doing so, our Will County divorce lawyers can provide the strong advocacy you need. Contact us at 708-518-8200 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your legal options. For over 25 years, we have assisted clients in Will County and the surrounding areas with difficult child custody matters, and we have a track record of obtaining favorable results.