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Glendale Heights divorce attorney parenting time

COVID-19 global pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of most people’s lives. If you are an unmarried parent, divorced parent, or you are considering divorce, you probably have questions about how COVID-related lockdowns may influence child custody issues. In Illinois, the term “child custody” has been replaced by language that better reflects most parents’ parenting situations. “Parental responsibilities” refers to parents’ decision-making authority while “parenting time” refers to the time a parent spends directly caring for the child. Coronavirus can have a dramatic influence on both of these issues.

Parenting Time and Parental Responsibilities

Between school closures and concerns over the spread of COVID, more children than ever are attending digital classes remotely. Before the age of COVID, most parents of school-aged children did not have to worry about childcare during school hours. However, now that classes are remote, parents may need to figure out how to adapt. If your child is too young to stay home by himself or herself, you and your child’s other parent may need to work out an arrangement regarding who will watch the child and when. This parenting time arrangement may be dramatically different than the arrangement that you made before COVID-related changes.

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Villa Park family law attorney child support

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused both a health and economic crisis, impacting people in many different ways. Child support payments are an important financial resource for parents who have the majority of parenting time regardless if they are divorced or were never married. However, these payments also represent a considerable expense for paying or “obligor” parents. If you are an Illinois parent who has lost your job or experienced a decrease in income because of coronavirus, you may be worried about paying your child support. Illinois child support orders issued are mandatory. However, parents who experience an unexpected reduction in income may qualify for a reduced child support obligation.

Penalties for Failure to Pay Child Support in Illinois

If your employment situation has changed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be unsure of how you will afford to pay your monthly bills. One of the most significant of your monthly expenses might be your child support payment. Nonpayment of child support is considered a major offense in Illinois. If you do not pay court-ordered child support, you could face civil and criminal penalties. You could even be held in contempt of court. If you are having trouble meeting your child support obligation, the first step is to communicate this problem to the court as well as your child’s other parent.  

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