Lake Forest, IL asked in Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Illinois

Q: Can I move in with my dad?

I am 16 years old and want to move in with my dad. My mom has been abusive mentally and physically. My dad is a registered sex offender because he was 18 and he dated a 17 year old girl. This was 40 years ago. Can I go live with him without my moms consent? I am sick of living with a mother that doesnt seem to love me.

1 Lawyer Answer
Devin C. DiDominicus
Devin C. DiDominicus
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Edwardsville, IL
  • Licensed in Illinois

A: If there is a parenting time order, your father needs to consult with an attorney regarding a motion to modify parenting time and responsibility. You're old enough that your opinion matters regarding placement, but keep in mind that your father's registration may have additional terms and conditions preventing him from cohabitating with you.

If your parents were married when you were born, or there has been a formal finding of paternity:

If there's no existing order, and your dad's registration doesn't prevent him from living with you, then yes, you very probably could simply go live with your father, as the police won't remove you back to your mother's house without an order saying they should. Your father would still want to file a petition to establish parenting time and parental responsibility.

If your parents were not married, or there has not been a formal finding of paternity:

Your father may not yet have standing to assert any parental rights over you, which means your mother could have the police retrieve you from his home at any time. If that is the case, your father needs to file a paternity action to establish his role as parent.

As always, these cases are highly complex, and your father should consult a local attorney with whom he can share all of the details.

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