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What are the legal considerations of child relocation?

Many Illinois residents find themselves in a position of having to relocate to a different city or state, or even to a different country, for reasons related to work, remarriage or another family situation. However, such situations can cause an ongoing conflict if the who person wishes to permanently relocate also has the custody of minor children. Such a relocation can often be accompanied by complicated legal procedures.

In most cases, the Illinois family court awards child custody based on the best interest of the child. Any modification to the existing child custody order will need to be approved by the court. The non-custodial parent must be notified by the custodial parent and that parent's lawyer regarding the proposed relocation.

In many cases, the non-custodial parent might not wish to allow the child to leave the state in which that person resides, because it would take away from the time that the parent is able to spend with the child. State laws allow the non-custodial parent to oppose such relocations with their children.

Once the notice is sent to the non-custodial parent regarding the proposed relocation, the non-custodial parent's attorney can also oppose the child's relocation. The court would then look into the relocation with the best interest of the child in mind.

In a case in which the court determines that the relocation is, in fact, in the best interest of the child, the custodial parent can move with the child with no legal obstacles in the way. However, the court may grant the non-custodial parent the custody of the minor child if it is determined that relocation would not benefit the child.

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