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Recent Blog Posts

Divorce on Unequal Economic Footing

 Posted on June 20, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerFinancial concerns prevent a lot of lower-earning spouses and homemakers from seeking the divorce they want. If you are financially dependent on your spouse, you might be worried about what would happen to your lifestyle - or even your ability to meet your basic needs - if you got divorced. Stay-at-home parents might have additional concerns about how their earning capacity might impact child custody decisions. Illinois offers legal protections for spouses who would be at a financial disadvantage during divorce. While you should discuss your concerns with a qualified Naperville, IL divorce attorney, you should also know that your individual finances are unlikely to be the barrier to divorce you think they are.

The Law Says You Contributed to Your Spouse's Earnings

Illinois’s marital property statute considers almost everything either spouse acquires while he or she is married to be marital property. This includes each spouse’s income and anything that income is used to purchase. Your spouse cannot argue that because his or her earnings were used to buy certain things, those things belong to him or her.

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Parenting Time Arrangements After Relocation

 Posted on June 10, 2024 in Child Custody / Allocation of Parental Responsibilities

IL family lawyerWhen one parent has relocated - with or without the children - you will need to make a new parenting time schedule. Arranging to transport the children back and forth between each parent’s household can be quite a bit more difficult when the parents live far apart. Depending on the distance between the parents’ households, this might involve buying plane tickets and planning for your children to travel alone as unattended minors. If you had a 50/50 parenting time schedule before the relocation, you would probably not be able to adhere to that schedule anymore. A DuPage County, IL child custody attorney can help you modify your parenting time arrangements.

Custody Options for Parents Who Live Far Apart

Sometimes, a little creativity can help you and your co-parent both enjoy plenty of time with your children. A few parenting time schedule options for parents who live at a distance include: 

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Is My Inheritance Separate Property?

 Posted on June 04, 2024 in Division of Assets

IL divorce lawyerGenerally, when a married person receives an inheritance, it is his or her separate property. Inherited money or property is excluded from the definition of marital property, which includes nearly anything either spouse acquires during the marriage. Inheritances are treated a bit differently under the law when it comes time to divide marital assets. When your family member or loved one chose to leave you an inheritance, she clearly meant for you to be the one to benefit from her gift. Otherwise, she would have named both you and your spouse in her will or trust. However, parts of your inheritance can become marital property if you commingle those assets with your marital funds. If you are getting divorced, a Naperville, IL divorce attorney can help you take steps to protect your personal inheritance.

What Counts as an Inheritance? 

Your inheritance can include anything you receive by gift, legacy, or descent. This includes:

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Modifying Parenting Time Arrangements

 Posted on May 27, 2024 in Parenting Time (Visitation)

IL family lawyerParenting time is usually one of the most hotly debated issues in a divorce. Rarely is a parent willing to relinquish time with his or her child, especially when the divorce is contentious. Although child custody orders are intended to be permanent, there are cases where a parenting time schedule needs to be changed at a later date. There are several reasons divorced parents might need a change in their child custody agreement or orders long after the divorce is finalized. If either parent’s or the child’s circumstances have changed substantially, you may be able to move for a modification. A Naperville, IL child custody modifications attorney can help with this.

When Can I Ask for a Parenting Time Modification?

To have your parenting time arrangements altered, you will need to show that there has been a substantial change in circumstances since your agreement or court orders were first established. Substantial changes in circumstances include:

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Creating a Parenting Plan for an Unborn Child

 Posted on May 23, 2024 in Child Custody / Allocation of Parental Responsibilities

IL divorce lawyerSpouses in Illinois can get divorced while one of them is pregnant. However, expecting parents who are divorcing might be required to create a parenting plan for their unborn child. A parenting plan covers things like which parent will spend time with the child and when and who will have legal decision-making rights with regard to the child. Deciding who has decision-making rights - called parental responsibilities in Illinois - may be especially important when you have a newborn. You must be represented by a knowledgeable Naperville, IL child custody attorney if you are getting divorced while you or your spouse is pregnant.

Child Custody Issues for Expecting Parents

A few of the things you will need to think about when making a parenting plan for a child who is not yet born include:

  • Decision-making at the time of birth - Will your child get the vitamin K shot upon birth? If you have a boy, will he be circumcised before leaving the hospital? What other types of medical interventions would you accept or not accept at the time of your child’s birth? Which parent can consent to which procedures on behalf of the newborn? 

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Signs Your Spouse is Preparing for Divorce

 Posted on May 15, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerBeing taken completely by surprise when you are served with divorce papers is never a pleasant experience. Yet, it happens to people every day. Many husbands or wives believe that everything is fine in their marriage, only to find out that their spouse has been secretly preparing for divorce for months. There are legal disadvantages to being surprised by a divorce filing. Some spouses will do things like taking marital funds to create a separate bank account for themselves, gathering evidence that might help them gain more parenting time, or even fabricating “proof” of spousal abuse in an effort to gain an advantage during divorce proceedings. If you even suspect that your spouse might be preparing to divorce you, it is wise to find your own Naperville, IL divorce attorney immediately.

Hints That Your Spouse Might File for Divorce Soon 

A few of the more subtle signs that your spouse is getting ready to divorce you include:

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Prenuptial Agreements for Business Owners

 Posted on May 07, 2024 in Business and Divorce

IL divorce lawyerIf you have worked hard to start your own business, you have every right to want to protect the fruits of your labor. Even if you owned the company in your own name before you got married, your company’s assets or profits can easily become marital property in the absence of a legally binding agreement that says otherwise. People who were business owners before getting married and saw their businesses grow during their marriages have lost some of the increased value during divorce. You can use a prenuptial agreement to establish your company as your own separate property in case your marriage ends in divorce. A Naperville, IL prenuptial agreements attorney can draft a fair agreement that protects your company.

How One Spouse’s Business Becomes Marital Property

Under Illinois’s marital property laws, most assets gained during the marriage by either spouse are the property of the marriage. While your company itself might stay your separate property because you had it before you were married, any increase in your company’s value during the marriage might be considered marital property. This is because both spouses are said to contribute to each other’s careers and earning potential, even if that contribution is indirect.

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Should Mothers Initiate Paternity Cases?

 Posted on April 26, 2024 in Paternity

IL family lawyerWhen you and your child’s father are no longer in a relationship, and he does not voluntarily become involved in your child’s life, you may be faced with a difficult decision about whether to start a paternity case. There are some clear benefits to legally establishing who your child’s father is, like being able to pursue child support. However, there may be some risks as well. Once you have established paternity, he has the right to file a child custody case and try to get parenting time. Establishing paternity also creates a legal tie between you, which may not be something you want if the relationship ended badly and you do not feel that he would be a good parent. It is important to talk through the situation with a DuPage County, IL paternity lawyer when you are considering filing a paternity case.

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Divorce and Guardianship of an Adult Child

 Posted on April 22, 2024 in Guardianship

IL family lawyerIt is somewhat common for parents to get divorced during the “empty nest” phase. Once their children have grown up and moved out, parents may realize that they no longer have anything in common. If you and your spouse have a disabled adult child and you share legal guardianship of him or her, you may not experience a typical “empty nest” phase, but you may still find that you no longer want to be married to each other. Raising a child with significant disabilities can put a strain on your marriage. If your child is going to be dependent on you for the rest of his or her life, you will need to address your disabled adult child’s care during your divorce. A DuPage County, IL divorce and guardianship lawyer can help you plan.

Sharing Guardianship of an Adult Child After Divorce 

While parents of minor children need to create a parenting plan, parents of disabled adults who plan to share guardianship should also develop a plan for caring for their adult child together. The plan you create will likely be similar to a parenting plan for minor children. However, your child may or may not live with either of you if you choose to place him or her in a group home or assisted living facility. When planning for co-guardianship, you should consider:

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Talking to Your Child About Divorce

 Posted on April 15, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerParents who have chosen to get divorced often find telling their children difficult. It is hard for parents to know how their children will react. Deciding how to approach the conversation is challenging. Parents must consider when and where to break the news and what their children’s reactions might look like. Some children are taken by complete surprise, but others are surprisingly perceptive and already know that divorce is looming. Parents must make sure their children know that both parents still love them and will put them first, even though the parents do not want to be together anymore. A DuPage County, IL divorce attorney can help parents find divorce solutions that keep children out of the conflict.

Tips for Telling Your Children You Are Getting Divorced

News of their parents’ divorce can come as a relief for children who have noticed a lot of conflict between their parents. Conversely, children might also become extremely upset. Tips for talking about your divorce with your children include:

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