Question

How do I get a visitation order in Illinois?

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Answer

Obtaining a court-ordered visitation schedule in Illinois is critically important to protect your rights to see your children. Without a court order setting forth a specific visitation schedule, parenting time or custody, there may be little one parent can do to prevent the other from making unilateral decisions that impair and harm the time you spend with your own children. Thus, it is crucial for you to work with an experienced family law attorney to safeguard your parental rights.

The best way to secure your visitation rights is to have an Illinois divorce attorney petition the court for a “court-ordered visitation schedule.” It is important that the resulting visitation arrangement specify when visitation is to begin and end, and where it is to take place. This needs to be done so that the order will have teeth and be enforceable. The more ambiguous the court-ordered visitation rights, the less likely they will be enforced by a judge.  

In Illinois, once you have a court-ordered visitation schedule you will have two possible courses of action to enforce your visitation rights and protect your visitation rights. One is criminal in nature, and the other is civil. The strategic choice about which legal option makes the most sense would be made on a case-by-case basis. Interference with visitation rights can be a crime under Illinois law, which is punishable by up to one year in jail upon the third conviction. You can alternatively pursue the matter civilly by filing a petition for rule to show cause (contempt) against the custodial parent. 

For more information about Illinois visitation orders, please visit me at www.dadsrights.com

Answered 11/11/2013

Disclaimer: This answer was provided by an attorney selected to Super Lawyers, and is intended to be an educated opinion only. This answer should not be relied upon as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

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