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What Happens if Parenting Time Rights Are Violated in Illinois?

 Posted on August 30, 2019 in Family Law

Oak Park parenting plan enforcement attorneyManaging a divorce can be a stressful and difficult situation for all parties involved, but it is critical to remember that the child’s needs are what is most important. Adolescents who have the opportunity to spend time and receive love and affection from both parents have been shown to have more mental and emotional stability. Visitation, which is now referred to as parenting time in the state of Illinois, is the regular time that a parent is granted with his or her child in the divorce decree. However, in some cases, one parent might not follow the legally binding court orders that were set in place. When this occurs, it is crucial to work with a family law attorney to determine what legal steps should be taken. 

How Is Parenting Time Established?

According to 750 ILCS 5/602.7, parenting time rights can first be decided upon by the child's parents if they present a written parenting plan that the court can approve. When an arrangement cannot be agreed upon by both parties, however, a judge will make the decision based on multiple relevant factors. Parents are presumed to be fit, and both parents have a right to reasonable parenting time. Unless it is demonstrated through compelling evidence that the child's physical, mental, or emotional health is put at risk by being with one parent, there typically will not be any restrictions put in place on either parent’s parenting time.

Consequences of Violating Parenting Time

When a divorce decree is issued, it functions as a court order that parents are required to follow. If it is determined by a judge that one of the parents has disregarded a court-ordered parenting agreement, that parent may be penalized in a variety of ways, including:

  • The addition of further terms and conditions to the original parenting plan.

  • An obligation to attend a parental educational program.

  • A requirement to attend family or individual counseling, especially if the situation involves domestic violence.

  • A requirement to post cash bond or security deposit to ensure future compliance.

  • Make-up parenting time granted to the parent not at fault.

  • The finding that the non-compliant parent is in contempt of court. This could result in the suspension of their driver’s license, a fine for a petty criminal offense, jail time of up to six months, or being placed on probation.

  • Enforcement of an appropriate civil fine.

  • Any other orders that the court believes will promote the child’s best interest.

A parent who violates a parenting time order may also be required to pay the attorney’s fees, court costs, and any related expenses for the other parent. However, if it is determined that the parent did not violate the agreement, the petitioner may be ordered to pay for the respondent’s attorney fees, court costs, and any other related expenses. 

Contact an Oak Park Parenting Time Lawyer


Parenting time agreements are essential not only for the parent who wants to spend time with his or her child, but they are also very important for the child, who deserves to have a close relationship with both parents. Disputes over parenting time can become incredibly emotional and stressful, and if your ex-spouse is not cooperating and meeting their requirements, it is best to seek assistance from legal professionals to ensure that your child’s best interests are protected. The experienced Cook County divorce enforcement attorneys at Wakenight and Associates, P.C. can work with you to enforce the court’s orders and ensure that your children’s needs are being met. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 630-852-9700.   




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