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Legal Statutes: Illinois

UPDATED September 19, 2017

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Part VI. Allocation of Parental Responsibilities

back to top5/602.7. Allocation of parental responsibilities: parenting time

(a) Best interests. The court shall allocate parenting time according to the child's best interests.

(b) Allocation of parenting time. Unless the parents present a mutually agreed written parenting plan and that plan is approved by the court, the court shall allocate parenting time. It is presumed both parents are fit and the court shall not place any restrictions on parenting time as defined in Section 600 and described in Section 603.10, unless it finds by a preponderance of the evidence that a parent's exercise of parenting time would seriously endanger the child's physical, mental, moral, or emotional health.

In determining the child's best interests for purposes of allocating parenting time, the court shall consider all relevant factors, including, without limitation, the following:

(1) the wishes of each parent seeking parenting time;

(2) the wishes of the child, taking into account the child's maturity and ability to express reasoned and independent preferences as to parenting time;

(3) the amount of time each parent spent performing caretaking functions with respect to the child in the 24 months preceding the filing of any petition for allocation of parental responsibilities or, if the child is under 2 years of age, since the child's birth;

(4) any prior agreement or course of conduct between the parents relating to caretaking functions with respect to the child;

(5) the interaction and interrelationship of the child with his or her parents and siblings and with any other person who may significantly affect the child's best interests;

(6) the child's adjustment to his or her home, school, and community;

(7) the mental and physical health of all individuals involved;

(8) the child's needs;

(9) the distance between the parents' residences, the cost and difficulty of transporting the child, each parent's and the child's daily schedules, and the ability of the parents to cooperate in the arrangement;

(10) whether a restriction on parenting time is appropriate;

(11) the physical violence or threat of physical violence by the child's parent directed against the child or other member of the child's household;

(12) the willingness and ability of each parent to place the needs of the child ahead of his or her own needs;

(13) the willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child;

(14) the occurrence of abuse against the child or other member of the child's household;

(15) whether one of the parents is a convicted sex offender or lives with a convicted sex offender and, if so, the exact nature of the offense and what if any treatment the offender has successfully participated in; the parties are entitled to a hearing on the issues raised in this paragraph (15);

(16) the terms of a parent's military family-care plan that a parent must complete before deployment if a parent is a member of the United States Armed Forces who is being deployed; and

(17) any other factor that the court expressly finds to be relevant.

(c) In allocating parenting time, the court shall not consider conduct of a parent that does not affect that parent's relationship to the child.

(d) Upon motion, the court may allow a parent who is deployed or who has orders to be deployed as a member of the United States Armed Forces to designate a person known to the child to exercise reasonable substitute visitation on behalf of the deployed parent, if the court determines that substitute visitation is in the best interests of the child. In determining whether substitute visitation is in the best interests of the child, the court shall consider all of the relevant factors listed in subsection (b) of this Section and apply those factors to the person designated as a substitute for the deployed parent for visitation purposes. Visitation orders entered under this subsection are subject to subsections (e) and (f) of Section 602.9 and subsections (c) and (d) of Section 603.10.

(e) If the street address of a parent is not identified pursuant to Section 708 of this Act, the court shall require the parties to identify reasonable alternative arrangements for parenting time by the other parent including, but not limited to, parenting time of the minor child at the residence of another person or at a local public or private facility.

P.A. 80-923, § 602.7, added by P.A. 99-90, § 5-15, eff. Jan. 1, 2016.