The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

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1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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How Are Parenting Time Disputes and Interference Handled in Illinois?

Posted on in Parenting Time

North Aurora parenting time attorney

Some of the most common issues that arise after a divorce is settled are those related to the child(ren) the couple had together. Specifically, disputes over parenting time (visitation) can occur, and they can lead to a great deal of conflict between the parents. Because the decisions made during divorce are legally binding, a non-compliant parent can face a variety of legal consequences. 

Court-Ordered Parenting Time

When you get a divorce, the state of Illinois requires you to come up with a parenting plan that outlines all relevant issues regarding your child, including how you and your ex-spouse will share parental responsibilities and how parenting time will be split between the two of you. If you cannot come to an arrangement on your own, an Illinois judge will make the decision for you based on a variety of factors in the child’s best interests. Because the parenting time schedule specified in your parenting plan is required, approved, and sometimes even created by the court, this makes it a legally-binding court order. This means both you and your spouse must follow the terms of the order, or you could face being held in contempt of the court.

Visitation Interference Is Against the Law

There are many ways in which one parent can interfere with the other's parenting time, such as refusing to allow the other parent to spend time with the child at all. Here are a few other ways that parenting time interference can occur:

  • One parent is habitually late dropping off a child at an agreed time

  • One parent insists on picking up the child before the agreed-upon pickup time

  • One parent constantly changes the parenting time schedule, with little to no reason to do so

  • One parent insists on staying with the child during the other parent’s parenting time, even though it is against the other parent’s wishes

  • One parent does not let the child contact the other parent via phone or other means during his or her parenting time, even though the parenting plan has allowed such contact

In most cases, interference with parenting time is against the law. However, a parent is allowed to deny the other parent's parenting time if they have a reasonable, good-faith belief that the child would be in danger of physical or emotional harm while in the care of the other parent. In these cases, a parent will need to provide evidence of these claims.

If a parent unreasonably interferes with the other parent's parenting time, they could face restrictions to their own parenting time or parental responsibilities, and they could also face criminal charges. Visitation interference is a petty offense for a first instance, although a parent who habitually interferes with the other parent’s parenting time can face misdemeanor charges if he or she is convicted of interference more than twice.

Contact a Batavia Divorce Attorney 

Dealing with an ex-spouse who refuses to cooperate regarding parenting issues can be extremely frustrating. This frustration can be compounded when it involves consistent interference with your parenting time. If your ex-spouse is not following your parenting plan, you should speak with a DuPage County parenting time lawyer as soon as possible. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we have been helping clients settle parenting time disputes and other family law issues for nearly two decades. To schedule a consultation, call our office today at 630-409-8184.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K10-5.5

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=075000050HPt%2E+VI&ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=8350000&SeqEnd=10200000

The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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