Beginning January 1, 2016, a new law (Senate Bill 57) will significantly change family law in Illinois, with the biggest change occurring with child custody matters.

Currently, the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) allows for custody to be allocated either jointly or solely, with a distinction between legal and physical custody. Starting in 2016, the law alters custody proceedings so the focus is on the allocation of parental responsibilities, including decision-making responsibilities and parenting time. A court could decide to give all parental responsibilities to one parent or split them between parents.

The main categories of responsibility for a child include (but are not limited to):

  • * Health
  • * Education
  • * Religion
  • * Discipline
  • * Daily routine

When making this determination, the court can use such factors as:

  • * The wishes of the parents
  • * The wishes of the child
  • * The relationship between the child and each parent
  • * The mental and physical health of all individuals
  • * Any physical violence or abuse toward the child
  • * The willingness of each parent to encourage a continuing relationship between the other parent and the child
  • * Whether either parent is a sex offender
  • * Other relevant factors

There are other changes in the law that will take effect January 1, 2016 such as parental relocation, dissolution of marriages, and maintenance and property division.

If you have any questions regarding these changes, the lawyers at The Greenberg Law Firm can help you determine what these changes might mean for you. Please contact us today at (630) 416-4747 or

To read the legislation, go to: