Custody (now known as Allocation of Parental Responsibilities)


There are 2 types of custody in the State of Illinois, joint and sole.  There is no presumption favoring either one.  In sole custody, a Parenting Agreement is entered that typically states the child will reside with the parent that has sole custody and have visitation with the non-custodial parent.  In sole custody, the parents consult with eachother about major decisions that have to be made for the minor child.  If an agreement cannot be reached, the parent who has custody makes the final decision.

Conversly, in a joint custody situation, the parties must make major decisions jointly.  If they cannot agree, they must attend mediation to try to work out an agreement.  If they still cannot agree, they must return to court and the Court will make the decision.

It is often thought that joint custody means equal time with the child, however it does not.  The child(ren) often reside with one parent and have visitation with the non-residential parent.  The term joint refers to major decisons being made together, such as medical, educational and religious decisions.

Custody can be modified in the future; within 2 years if there is serious endangerment or after 2 years based on the best interests of the minor child.


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