What You Need to Know Before You Remove Your Child from Illinois

When a parent seeks “Removal,” they are seeking to take the minor child from the State of Illinois on a permanent basis. This does not include time for temporary visits out of the state, such as vacations.

A parent must first ask the court’s permission, before removing the child from Illinois. The court will allow removal if the court finds that the move is in the best interest of the child.

We are commonly asked if the other parent needs to be notified about the move, and when should they be notified. The answer is of course you must tell the other parent, and the sooner the better. The court does not like to decide this issue quickly, and the process can often take many months, so the sooner you notify the other parent, the better off you will be. If there is no agreement to move out of state, then you have to go to court and ask the court’s permission. Taking the child out of state without permission can lead to a change of custody, so make sure that you consult with us before you move. When you start thinking about a permanent removal, you will want to gather information about the child’s school, where you will live, and why you are moving. Moving to keep the other parent from visiting is met with resistance by the court. You have to be able to demonstrate that this move is not designed to keep the other parent from the child, but that you are moving to enhance the child’s life in some way. You will need to think about expanding the non-custodial parent’s parenting time as well. It is not uncommon for the court to allow the other parent a large part of the child’s breaks from school, as well as require you to pay for the child’s transportation costs back to Illinois.

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