Understanding The Basics Of Allocation Of Parental Responsibilities In Illinois

If you’re going through a divorce or separation and children are a part of the equation, you’ll need to figure out how to allocate the different parental responsibilities for your children. In Illinois law, the commonly used term “child custody” is instead referred to as “parental responsibilities,” which is an important rhetorical distinction when considering the responsibilities of parents as determined by the court in custody decisions.

The allocation of parental responsibilities is typically determined by a judge during a divorce proceeding. However, it can also be decided by agreement between the parents outside of court. If the parents cannot agree on an allocation, the judge will decide based on what is in the best interests of the child.

The court’s custody ruling will fall into one of three types of child allocation of parental responsibilities: joint allocation, shared allocation, and sole allocation of parental responsibilities.

Joint Allocation

Joint allocation means that both parents have a say in major decisions about the child’s life, including decisions about education, healthcare, and religion.  However, joint allocation does not necessarily mean that both parents must agree on every decision. If the parents cannot agree on a particular issue, they can each submit a proposal to the court and let the judge decide.

In joint allocation, the court will designate a residential parent using majority parenting time, while the other may have to pay child support and then also be afforded parenting time. The amount of time spent with the parent not having majority parenting time will be outlined in either a parenting time agreement or court order.

Shared Allocation

In Illinois, when parents share the allocation of parental responsibilities for their children, they are each given specific rights and responsibilities. These can be shared equally between the parents, or one parent can have primary responsibility for certain aspects while the other parent has primary responsibility for others. In some cases, one parent may have sole responsibility for all aspects of the child’s life.

Sole Allocation

In some cases, one parent may be granted sole allocation of parental responsibilities for the child. This means that the other parent does not have the ability to make decisions for the child.

Illinois’s Legal Terminology Is Key In Custody Arrangements

It is important to understand Illinois’s state-specific laws and terminology as you begin the parental responsibility allocation (custody) process. A knowledgeable Illinois family law attorney can be an invaluable resource to help you better understand what to expect from the parental responsibility allocation process in Illinois. Empowered by knowledge and legal expertise, you’ll be better prepared to achieve a beneficial outcome for both parents and children alike.