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Ways to Divide Parenting Time in Your Divorce

Posted on in Child Custody

Ways to Divide Parenting Time in Your DivorceDivorced parents share parenting time with each other in most cases because their children benefit from having a strong relationship with both parents after a divorce. For a court to give all of the parenting time to one parent, the other parent would have to be a danger to the children or show complete disinterest in seeing the children. There are many different ways that parents can divide parenting time – from one parent receiving a vast majority of the time to an even split of parenting time. Each division has its own implications for creating a parenting schedule and financial factors, such as child support and taxes.

80-20 and 70-30 Divisions

Illinois law presumes that children benefit the most when one parent has a majority of the parenting time because:

  • The children have a primary residence and neighborhood that they call home.
  • Frequent transportation between parents’ homes is more disruptive.

Giving one parent a majority of the parenting time may be sensible in your situation if one of you is more available to be with the children or more capable in a caretaking role. A 70-30 division of parenting time would work if you want to split your parenting schedule between weekdays and weekends. An 80-20 division would likely have the children spending every other weekend with their nonresidential parent, which may make sense if a parent has a busy work schedule or lives far enough away that seeing the children every week is impractical.

50-50 and 60-40 Divisions

Illinois considers any division of parenting time from 60-40 to 50-50 to be a shared parenting agreement. Because an unequal division of parenting time is the default in Illinois, parents must prove why equal parenting time is in the best interest of their children. Creating a reasonable parenting schedule is an important part of convincing the court to approve the shared parenting agreement. You want to avoid constant switches between parents and give each parent at least a couple of days at a time with the children. There are also financial implications for a shared parenting agreement:

  • When parenting time is divided at least 60-40, Illinois has a different child support formula.
  • If parenting time is exactly 50-50, both parents have an equal right to claim a child tax credit on their federal tax return.

Contact a Barrington, Illinois, Divorce Attorney

One of your jobs as parents during your divorce is to honestly assess which division of parenting time will be best for your children. A Barrington, Illinois, divorce lawyer at John M. Lucas & Associates, LLC, can help you make that determination and advocate on your behalf in your divorce negotiations. Schedule a consultation by calling 847-381-8700.


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