You may have recently heard some new family law terms here in Illinois. This is due to the new divorce-related laws that went into force in the state this year.

These new laws made a wide range of changes to Illinois family law. Among the changes were some term changes. Specifically, the traditional family law terms of “custody” and “visitation” have now been replaced in state law. 

What have these terms been changed to? Custody has been changed to “decision making” and visitation has been changed to “parenting time.”

Why do what specific terms are used in family law matter? Well, terms can affect the way certain proceedings are viewed. Also, terms can have certain emotions and ideas connected to them. Additionally, how clear family law terms are can impact how understandable different family law proceedings are.

One would generally hope family law terms wouldn’t trigger negative views or emotions and would be clear. One of the hopes with abandoning the terms custody and visitation in state law in favor of the new terms is that the new terms will be more clear and accurate and have less baggage attached to them.

What do you think of the new terms state law has adopted to replace custody and visitation?

When in divorce proceedings, it is very important for an individual to have a clear understanding of what is being addressed in the different proceedings and what impacts different proposed agreements would have. Thus, confusion over terms could be very problematic for someone in a divorce. Divorce attorneys can provide some clarity to divorcing individuals when it comes to divorce issues can answer questions such individuals have about any divorce terms they find confusing.

Source: Chicago Tribune, “Love Essentially: New laws aim to make divorce easier,” Jackie Pilossoph, Feb. 10, 2016