The parties have joint custody of their seven-year-old child.  Child lives with Mother. She is the residential parent.  Both parents live in Illinois.

Mother filed a petition to remove the child permanently to South Carolina. She has a new job there.

The trial court denied Mother’s request. The court said that the proposed move would not be in the child’s best interest.  Father’s visitation would be affected. Mother appealed.

Mother had a persuasive reason for wanting to move to South Carolina.  Her current job at a college in Illinois was precarious. It was highly stressful.  The work hours were long.

Her new job at a university in South Carolina was a much better work environment.  That job had reasonable work hours.  Mother’s extended family members lived nearby in South Carolina.

The case was sent back to the Trial Court.  The visitation schedule was to be modified.  Visitation for Father would not be as frequent. But, it would be for longer periods of time.

Parties should not be tied to certain locations after a divorce.  For example, the parties should not be tied to a particular state.  A Petition for Removal is a serious change to a parties’ time with the child.  The court needs to consider that there may not be a direct benefit to the child. But, a direct benefit for the parent may just be an important indirect benefit to the child.

In re: Marriage of Tedrick, 2015 IL App (4th) 140773.

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