Summer is a great season for families to vacation together. However, summer plans can get complicated after a divorce. This is particularly true for children who split their time between two households.
In 2016, Illinois replaced “child custody arrangements” with “parenting plans.” These are legal documents that list the rights and obligations each parent has regarding their children. One important aspect of a parenting plan is establishing a “parenting time schedule.” In Illinois, these schedules can be flexible so long as both parents are in agreement. A family lawyer can help you develop or legally modify your parenting plan to benefit your relationship with your child.
A parenting time schedule should include the following:
- A residential schedule
- A summer break schedule
- A holiday break schedule
During summer, parents can cooperate and modify their parenting schedules to account for vacations. This is particularly helpful for parents who live outside of Illinois and don’t get much time with their children during the school year.
Examples of summer break schedules include:
- Developing a new schedule that incorporates both parents’ vacation plans
- Splitting the summer vacation time in half between both parents
- Swapping the residential schedule so the “weekend parent” has more time
- Allowing a child to spend the entire summer with a non-residential parent
- Keeping the residential schedule, but agreeing on vacation exceptions
Seek Legal Counsel
As you can see, Illinois laws are very flexible when it comes to parents arranging summer break schedules. Even so, it’s important to retain legal representation before agreeing to any schedule modifications. A parenting plan is meant to reflect the best interests of a child while being fair to both parents. If parents can’t be fair to each other, then legal action must be pursued.
At Wakenight & Associates, P.C., our experienced family lawyers can offer you counsel and legal representation when it comes to creating or modifying a summer break schedule. Some former spouses weaponize parenting plans and refuse to make allowances or exceptions that may benefit their ex. We can represent you in court if you feel your parenting plan is unfair and no longer represents the best interests of your child.
Our firm offers bilingual representation and free consultations. Contact our family law attorneys today to learn more about parenting plans and your legal rights!