Anderson & Boback Logo
birthdays in a parenting agreement chicago divorce

Celebrating Birthdays in a Parenting Agreement

Published
Categorized as Child Custody & Visitation

Birthdays are a big deal to kids – they usually get a party with their friends with cake, balloons, presents, and if they are lucky, a ball pit to jump into at Chucky Cheese! The day is all about them. Going through a divorce during this special time for a child can sometimes result in a dampening of the mood and a less than enthusiastic celebration.  birthdays in a parenting agreement While a child might be able to understand that holidays are celebrated with just one parent and that one side of their family, they probably can’t understand why both parents and the whole family cannot be together on that one day of the year that is all about them.

If the divorcing parents are ultimately not able to agree on how a birthday is going to be celebrated for their child or children, the Court must then make the final decision on birthdays in a parenting agreement.

Ways the Court Handle Disagreements on Birthdays in a Parenting Agreement

There are usually 2 ways to deal with a child’s birthday in court if the parents cannot agree on their own what to do. 

Alternating the Child’s Birthday Each Year

The first way is for the Court to alternate the child’s birthday each year, meaning one parent gets to celebrate that specific date with the child in even-numbered years and in the odd-numbered years it is to be celebrated with the other parent. Of course, this might not be ideal to the child as they likely prefer that their parents be present together at their party, but this is sometimes the best – or only – option in high conflict cases. This celebration allocation usually results in the parent who does not get to celebrate with the child on their actual birth date that year planning something on the weekend before or after the child’s birth date. Although not on their actual birthday, the parent who must plan on a different day should remember that their child will still enjoy the celebration. It’s more about the friends, the family, the fun, and the food for the child rather than if they get to celebrate on the actual day. 

Splitting The Birthday Between the Parents

The other way to resolve the issue is for the Court to require the parents to split the actual date of the birthday between the parents, where one parent gets some time in the morning and afternoon and the other gets birthday parenting time in the evening. This celebration plan lets both parties celebrate the actual birth date every year, but means that neither of them get a full day with the child and it’s almost impossible to plan a party when you only get half of the day. 

If the parents are more amicable during the case and after the divorce, it might be possible to try out a joint celebration so both parents can be at the party for the child at the same time. However, this should be done with consideration given to both parents as to the location of the party will be, who will be responsible for what costs, what guests will be invited, and the plan as to timing and cooperation between the parties. Everything should be planned in advance so no issues come up at or after the party. Both parents should also remember that this party is about the child, and the divorce case or parenting matters should not be discussed at the event.  

However a child’s birthday is celebrated, and whether that decision is made by the court or by the agreement of the parents, both parents, and their families need to set aside their differences for the child’s special day, so their child remembers his or her birthday celebration each year as being a happy, fun event with friends and without unnecessary family drama.

Was this information helpful?

You May Also Like

What Is Child Support? Child support is the terminology used to describe the periodic or ongoing payments one parent makes to the other following a divorce to assist in raising their shared children. Child support is thus a combination of…

Wonder if your spousal maintenance is modifiable? This question was addressed in Scarp v. Rahman when the father in the case of sought to modify his maintenance obligation.  The trial court would not allow the modification so he sought an…

Birthdays are a big deal to kids - they usually get a party with their friends with cake, balloons, presents, and if they are lucky, a ball pit to jump into at Chucky Cheese! The day is all about them.…

Our firm represents a lot of military families and for the most part, handling a military divorce is just like any other divorce.  There are specific rules that need to be followed, however, and those parents in the military facing…

Changes to Spousal Maintenance Law in Illinois In 2019, a significant change in the tax code was made regarding maintenance, which resulted in spousal maintenance (formerly known as “alimony”, also known as “spousal support”) being tax-free to the recipient and…

Illinois has modified its statutes wherein parents are now allocated “parental responsibilities” and “parenting time” instead of “custody”.  The purpose of these changes was to try and give the parents less to fight over.  You can win “custody” but winning…

RECENT POST
Categories
Archives
Anderson & Boback small logo

Download our Divorce Planning Guide today!

Get the information you need to prepare for divorce with our free resource Guide to Planning for Your Divorce.

What our clients are saying

Schedule a Discreet Consultation Today!

    Firm Overview
    ANDERSON & BOBACK

    Anderson & Boback is a highly-respected, experienced Chicago family law firm, skilled in negotiation and litigation. When divorce and other family law issues make your life chaotic and uncertain, you want your case resolved as quickly and fairly as possible. Call Now 312-715-0870