Ekker Law, P.C. / Steven B. Ekker, Esq.

How to Change an Illinois Parenting Plan

 Posted on January 25, 2021 in Divorce

Kane County family law attorney parenting plan

During divorce proceedings between parents in Illinois, a parenting plan is created to determine each parent’s rights and responsibilities, including the time each parent spends with a child, also known as parenting time. The plan creates a structure that helps ease the transition of two parents who now live separately. It covers things like who is financially responsible for different aspects of the child’s life, how holidays or vacations should be approached, and daily life aspects like school and extracurricular activities. No matter how diligently you and your attorneys work to craft a suitable plan, it will not last forever as it was originally written. As time goes by, your situations will almost certainly change, and the parenting plan will probably require modifications.

Modifying Your Parenting Plan

As with creating the parenting plan in the first place, changing a parenting plan should be treated as a business transaction or contract negotiations. Amendments to an Illinois parenting plan require approval from the court. If there are any discrepancies, Illinois law falls back on the original parenting plan, but if the change has been active for six months, it may be added to the court-approved plan. Changes made without the court and official documentation are not enforceable. Illinois law states parenting plan changes should be in the best interests of the child. The state requires a significant change in circumstances in order to grant a modification. Acceptable reasons may include:

  • A change in a parent’s work schedule

  • New extracurricular activities that reduce the effectiveness of the original plan

  • Relocation of one spouse that affects the plan’s structure

  • One parent is not fulfilling financial responsibilities to the child

  • There are issues or errors in the original parenting plan

  • The death of one parent

  • Evidence of abuse or neglect

While some changes may be planned, others can happen suddenly. Regardless of the circumstances, parenting time within a parenting plan can be changed at any time. Again, the primary consideration will always be the best interests of the child.



Share this post:
kcba shugar grove
Back to Top