Tag Archives: child relocation

IL divorce lawyerOne of the hardest parts of divorce is not being able to spend as much time with your child. The situation becomes even more difficult when your former spouse tells you they plan to move out of state and they want to take your child with them. After you receive this notice, you may think there is nothing you can do. Fortunately, that is not true. There are steps you can take that can help keep your children with you.

Notice From Your Former Spouse

If your former spouse makes the decision that they want to move out of state with your child, they must first notify you of the move. The notice they give you must state the date they intend to move, the address of their new home, and how long they intend to remain in the new location. They must deliver the notice to you at least 60 days before they move unless they have a court order that specifies different instructions.

You can sign the notice if you approve of the move and your former spouse will then file the notice with the court. Of course, you do not have to consent to the move. If your spouse moves out of state with the child without your consent, or without sending you notice, it is considered parental kidnapping or child abduction.

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IL divorce lawyerEven after a divorce is finalized, the only constant that seems to remain is change. That is often the case when one spouse wants to relocate and they have child custody. Often, this is met with resistance from the other parent that is worried about how often they will see their child, and if they will be able to continue enjoying the relationship they have with that child. The law recognizes that even though one parent has been awarded custody, the other parent still has rights in this scenario. As such, there are things to know if you want to relocate with your child, or if your spouse wants to.

What Is Relocation?

When considering relocating with a child of divorce, it is important to understand what the legal term relocating means. This is not simply you or your spouse moving across town with the child. Under the law, relocating means:

  • For residents that live in Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake McHenry County, or Will County, relocating means moving to another residence within the state that is over 25 miles from the current residence of the child. The miles are designated according to an Internet mapping service.
  • For residents that live outside of the above counties, relocating means moving out of the child’s current county and over 50 miles from the child’s current residence, although the child will remain within the state of Illinois.
  • Moving to any residence outside the state of Illinois that is over 25 miles from the child’s current residence.

When this is the case and the parent that has been awarded custody wants to relocate, there are considerations both parents should be aware of.

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IL divorce lawyerAfter a divorce, one or both spouses may wish to relocate. Whether they do so because they landed a new job, would like to be closer to their side of the family, or simply want a fresh start, it is important to take their child’s best interests in consideration. Let’s take a closer look at what to do if you are planning on relocating with your child after divorce.

A Written Notice

If you are interested in relocating with your child, you must provide the other parent with a written notice. If possible, the notice should be given to them at least 60 days before you plan to move. In the event 60 days is not an option, as soon as possible will do.

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DuPage county, family law, Martoccio & MartoccioBeginning January 1, 2016, Illinois has dramatically changed on whether parents can relocate their children both beyond the borders of Illinois as well as within the State of Illinois.
Changing the child's residence to another State was previously known as "removal" which has now become known as "relocation".
The laws of removal or relocation of the child outside the State of Illinois, have had a roller coaster history in the last 35 years. Sometimes the Courts permitted relocation by the custodial parent by merely asking for it, whereas other times it was almost impossible for the custodial parent to move a child's residence outside of Illinois. Under the prior rules, the likelihood of being granted permission to move your child outside even varied between counties. DuPage County was well known as being a county of "golden handcuffs" The custody mother was granted excellent child support but rarely could remove the residence of the child outside the State of Illinois. Cook County on the other hand, for a time, was much more flexible frequently granting permission to relocate outside of Illinois, where the same side effects in DuPage county would result in a denial of relocation.
Up until now there was no restriction whatsoever preventing a custodial parent from moving a Child’s residence within the State of Illinois. It was not necessary to seek the consent of the other parent or the approval of an Illinois Court for an In-State change of a child's residence, regardless of how distant the child would be from the father [or noncustodial parent]. This is significant because Illinois is a large state. Illinois is, at its most extreme points is about 390 miles long from north to south and about 210 miles wide from east to west and covers an area encompassing nearly of 58,000 square miles. As such, a custodial parent had the legal freedom to move, perhaps several hours and hundreds of miles away from the Father. Leaving the noncustodial parent with little option to object to the removal of his child while on the other hand, the custodial parent could be blocked from moving 10 minutes further if the move was across the border of Illinois into Indiana, Wisconsin, or Missouri.
New Laws for Relocation
The New Illinois laws regarding relocating a child's residence focus mainly on the distance between the parents and how far the relocation is from the previous residence. Under the new guidelines a parent with physical custody of a child may move with the child without consent or approval:
  • Within Illinois, up to 25 miles, if the previous residence is in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry or Will Counties;
  • Within Illinois, up to 50 miles, if the previous residence is in any other county; and
  • Outside of Illinois, up to 25 miles from the previous residence, regardless of county.
Relocation of Child’s Residence 25 miles from the Borders of Illinois
Illinois family courts will retain jurisdiction over the case when a parent chooses to move out of State, but within 25 miles. This is an interesting change in the law. Prior to the new law, once a parent was granted removal of the child's residence to another state, the new state became the "home state" of the child and any further court proceedings regarding the child's custody or visitation had to be brought in the new " home state" of the child. So if the mother was allowed permission to move to Indiana, under the old rules the father had to file any future petitions for changes in custody, in visitation, or enforcement of visitation in the state of Indiana. Now he can file for custody, visitation or to enforce his visitation in the County in Illinois where the parties were divorced despite the fact that the mother is living in another state.
Another interesting point brought about by the 25 mile rule, is that the Mother who after moving to Indiana later wants to move to yet another third state she has to ask permission of the Illinois court to do so and meet all the requirements. Under the prior law, if she was granted permission to relocate the child to Indiana she was then free to leave Indiana and go to any other state without seeking further permissions.
All other relocations with a child require the consent of the other parent or the approval of the court.
A word to the wise: Generally you have the right to object to your child's residence being moved to another State but you must do so right away since once again waiting until after it's a done deal will probably mean you have agreed to the relocation of your child. Our attorneys at Martoccio & Martoccio have had years of experience in visitation and custody cases involving custody parents relocating to other States.
We have litigated cases involving relocation by a custody parent of the party's child through the Illinois Supreme Court. Attorney John Martoccio of Martoccio & Martoccio wrote the Illinois Supreme Court briefs on behalf of a successful custody mother and assisted in the argument before the Illinois Supreme Court in the first Illinois Supreme Court case that dealt with the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act. In Re Marriage of Siegel, 84 Ill.2d 212: 417 N.E. 2d 1312: 1981 Ill. Lexis 246; 49 Ill. Dec. 289 (Ill. SC. 1981
John Martoccio has won a removal case for the father, compelled the custody mother to return the child Illinois and ultimately obtain custody for the father of his child. . In re Marriage of Gibbs, 268 Ill. App. 3d 962, 972-73, 645 N.E.2d 507 (1994).
If you are looking to move and have questions regarding the relocation laws of Illinois, The Law Offices of Martoccio & Martoccio can help you better understand. They have 35 years serving Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall & Will Counties in many areas of family law. Call 630-920-8855 for your free initial consultation.

move-with-my-children-Illinois.jpgFollowing your divorce, you may need to relocate—move your children to another state or town. Frequently, remarriage to someone living in another location or the offer of employment for yourself or your new spouse triggers your need to move. But can you?

Before you think about moving your children to another home, or even before you divorce, consider the following advice.

Best Advice: You Need to Plan for the Move.

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