The Child & Family  Law Center

Newsletter February, 2017
What is in a Word: FAPE or Free, Appropriate, Public, Education
By Micki Moran, J.D.

The analysis of what constitutes a free, appropriate, public, education (FAPE), is at the core of every special education dispute. As a special education attorney, the argument of what constitutes a FAPE must be defined by each individual child's needs, by looking to the statute and to case law. The guidance on what a school district must provide has been limited and recently the Supreme Court of the United States took up the question in the Endrew S. case. This is an appeal from the Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit who ruled that school districts can satisfy federal special education law so long as they offer a student with a disability an educational program that provides him or her with a benefit that is more than merely de minimis or non-trivial. 

What is an Independent Educational Evaluation and What Does it Mean for my Child?
By Sharon Falen, J.D.

As part of the Independent Educational Program (IEP) process, parents may request an Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE) for their child.  Reasons for doing so vary; for instance, parents might disagree with the diagnoses, testing results, or recommendations of the school's evaluator of their child.  An IEE refers to an outside, or neutral, evaluation of a child when he or she is being assessed for what kind of special education services are needed, if any.  The IEE is an important and useful tool for some families, and it is important to understand because a request for an IEE may be helpful in certain circumstances.

Changes to Illinois Child Support Law
By Micki Moran, J.D.

Currently, Illinois courts calculate child support based on a percentage of the payor's income. That is going to change on July 1,2017. House Bill 3982 provides that the allocation of child support shall be made in a way as if the parents had stayed married.  Some of the facts the courts will consider will be both parent's combined net incomes, the number of nights each parent has with the minor children and the number of children in the family.
Support for a Non-Minor Child with a Disability and the Impact of "Section 513" 
By Sharon Falen, J.D.

A parent may petition for child support for a disabled child who is over the age of majority under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. One of the factors for deviation from the standard child support guidelines is "the physical, mental, and emotional needs of the child." 750 ILCS 505(a)(2). Beyond this provision, Section 513.5 of the Act explicitly provides for support for a non-minor child with a disability. Specifically, the statute states that a court may award money out of the income or property of either or both parents or out of the estate of a deceased parent to support a child over the age of 18 if the child is mentally or physically disabled and not otherwise emancipated.
Events and Presentations

March 8, 6:30-7:15 p.m.
Preparing for Your Child's Annual IEP Review
Presented by Micki Moran, J.D.

March 10
Micki Moran, J.D. to Present:
Cyberbullying and Social Media 
Illinois Association of Private Special Education Centers
Cove School, Northfield, IL

March 20, 7:00-9:00 p.m.
SOS for 2e (Supports, Options and Solutions for Twice Exceptional Children)
Micki Moran, J.D., to present:
The Meaning of FAPE
Naperville Municipal Building Room B

March 21
Training session for Have Dreams
on T he Defensible IEP
Presented by Micki Moran, J.D.


Class offered by NAMI Cook County North Suburban
NAMI Basics
Feb. 15-March 22
Free class for parents of children with emotional or behavioral difficulties
Held at New Trier High School Northfield
Call NAMI Cook County North Suburban for info and to register: 847-716-2252

Announcing our new Website:

We have been representing special needs families for nearly 20 years in all aspects of family law. Our website will provide up to date information and resources to our clients and others. Check it out and let us know what you think!

About Us
The Child & Family Law Center ,  founded  by Micki Moran in 1995, is a unique legal practice that specializes in providing services to families and children in the areas of Special Education, IEP Consultation, Guardianship, Juvenile Law, Criminal Law, Mental Health Law, DCFS, Divorce and Parental Responsibility, Parenting Agreements, and Mediation.

We provide representation in Cook, Lake, McHenry, DuPage, Kane and Will Counties.

Please call our office to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys in the areas of Divorce, Guardianship, Special Education, Juvenile Criminal Law.

The Child & Family Law Center
1950 Sheridan Road, Suite 201
Highland Park, IL 60035
Phone (847)926-0101
Fax (847)926-8500