Parenting after a divorce, separation, or break-up is challenging, to say the lease. If you have been allocated significantly less parenting time than your former partner, maintaining a meaningful relationship with your child can be even more difficult. What happens, though if the other parent convinces the court to restrict or limit your parenting time even further? A skilled parenting time lawyer can help you understand what recourse you may have, and work with you in taking the steps to restore your parental rights.
How Parenting Time Can Be Restricted
The driving principle of Illinois family law statutes that address children and parenting responsibilities is to serve the child’s best interests. In virtually every case, the court begins with the presumption that active participation by both parents is in the child’s best interest, and, therefore, will allocate parenting time to each parent based on the family’s circumstances. Your parenting time cannot be restricted unless the other parent can show that your lifestyle or behavior seriously endangers your child. These dangers can be to the child’s mental, moral, or physical health, as well as to his or her emotional development.
Examples of Restrictions
In an extreme situation, your right to parenting time may be suspended completely, but the court will usually try to avoid cutting you off altogether. Instead, your time with your child may be reduced or limited to certain physical locations. The court could also determine that you may only have your parenting time under the supervision of the other parent or a neutral third party. Additional restrictions could include keeping certain people away from your child, requiring you to abstain from drugs or alcohol immediately before and during your parenting time, and any other considerations the court finds to be necessary.