Child Custody in Illinois With a Non-Traditional Work Schedule

Child Custody in Illinois With a Non-Traditional Work Schedule

By: Gordon & Perlut, LLC

When you are going through a divorce and have minor children from your marriage, or you are ending a relationship with a partner with whom you share minor children, we know you are likely to have many questions or concerns about how child custody in Illinois will be decided. For parents with a non-traditional work schedule, the prospect of going through a child custody case can be even more concerning or anxiety-inducing. A parent might be worried he/she will not be eligible for parenting time because of their profession. There are a wide variety of jobs that require employees to work unconventional hours, and you should know that a non-traditional work schedule will not result in a restriction of parenting time.

Our child custody lawyers in Chicago can provide you with more detailed information about how the court might allocate parenting time based on the specific type of work schedule you typically keep, but in the meantime, we want to provide you with more general information about child custody in Illinois with a non-traditional work schedule.

Courts Understand That Parents May Be Required to Work Unconventional Hours

Although the typical workday comes with a nine-to-five schedule, you should know that the court will not penalize a parent who works unconventional hours since there are so many different jobs that require non-traditional schedules. According to Business Insider, some jobs that come with unconventional work schedules are well-known, such as healthcare professions (emergency room physicians or nurses who might frequently work overnights, or emergency medical technicians or law enforcement officers with night shifts). Yet many other jobs and professions also come with unconventional hours, such as firefighters, political campaign managers, pilots or air traffic controllers, rideshare or taxi drivers, or convenience store owners. If you do not have a typical work schedule, that fact alone will not prevent you from having parenting time.

Avoid Complications By Creating a Parenting Plan

If you have been working a job that has non-traditional hours for quite some time, your spouse or former partner likely understands the intricacies and complications of your schedule. If you are able to work collaboratively with your ex for the sake of your child, you can create a court-approved parenting plan through which you allocate parental responsibilities under Illinois law—including both significant decision-making responsibilities and parenting time. By reaching an agreement about how you will share parenting time, which includes the day-to-day caretaking functions for the child, you can develop a schedule that takes into account your unconventional work schedule and still ensures that you share parenting time with your ex.

Court Can Be Flexible in Allocating Parenting Time

Even if you cannot reach an agreement with your ex in order to develop a parenting plan, the court will allocate parental time in a manner that is in the best interests of the child. Illinois courts want both parents to play an important role in their children’s lives and to have parenting time unless there is a clear reason to restrict it. Having a non-traditional work schedule, to be clear is never a reason to restrict parenting time.

With the 2018 changes to the IMDMA that replace the term of child custody with “parental responsibilities”, courts can be more flexible in allocating parenting time and developing a schedule that meets the specific needs of the family.

Contact Our Chicago Child Custody Attorneys

Do you have questions about the allocation of parenting time with a non-traditional work schedule? A child custody attorney in Chicago can help. Contact Gordon & Perlut, LLC today.