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April 13, 2017

Reasons to Get a Prenup in Illinois

Premarital agreement



Many people do not fully understand what marriage entails from a financial and legal standpoint. Often what is impressed on couples before getting married is how spouses should act towards each other and how to have a successful, long-lasting marriage. However, in the eyes of the law, marriage is a contract with legal implications. Most important […]

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March 31, 2017

Child Custody When a Domestic Partnership Ends

Civil Unions



Relationships can enjoy peaks and valleys of good times and bad. Weathering the storm is not always possible, and marriages or partnerships entered into with the utmost of good faith cannot stand the test of time. Amicable or not, if a relationship ends, the question of how property a couple own or shares will be divided. […]

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March 17, 2017

What Establishing Paternity Does – and Does Not – Accomplish

Paternity



Establishing paternity can be important for your child in a number of ways such as requiring that the father provides him or her with financial support. It also serves to protect the parents’ rights and enable the father’s access to medical information. When Does Paternity Need to be Established? Paternity must be established when the parents of […]

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February 27, 2017

Fathers Seek Changes in Child Custody Laws

Child Custody



A group of fathers has banded together to lobby for child custody law changes. The group, called Dads Can Too, believe that joint custody should be the starting point for all custody hearings in Illinois. The fathers in the group have struggled — in some cases for over a decade — to see their children more often […]

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February 20, 2017

Avoiding an Acrimonious Custody Battle

Child Custody



The unfortunate reality across the country is that couples continue to end their marriages. Divorce is a major decision that requires careful thought and consideration. There are several layers to address, including financial and property assets. But one of the biggest issues couples face are the arrangements to be put in place for any children of […]

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February 13, 2017

Protective Orders in Domestic Violence Cases

Domestic Violence



Sometimes relationships appear rosy and congenial on the outside, but behind closed doors, they can be full of torment and both physical and mental harm. Partners and spouses can successfully conceal domestic issues from others, while many quietly suffer behind closed doors. Abused spouses may be afraid to speak out due to cultural reasons, fear of […]

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February 6, 2017

Can Child Custody Mediation Work for You?

Child Custody



One of the most important and emotional factors in a divorce is figuring out how children of the marriage will be cared for. When going through a divorce, there are many issues to take into consideration. Where a couple has accumulated significant assets such as financial holdings, business ownership, real estate, trusts, and retirement assets, […]

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December 22, 2016

Appointment of a Guardian Ad Litem in a Family Law Case

Child Custody



The phrase, “in the best interests of a child” is a common but important phrase when it comes to protecting the youngest members of society. There are many situations where children need to be shielded from sensitive situations but their rights must be paramount. Certain legal situations such as a divorce, ensuing custody battles, criminal […]

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December 15, 2016

Understanding Upcoming Changes to Illinois Child Support Laws

Child Support



The Illinois legislature has made some changes to the way child support is calculated, and it may impact your court-ordered child support. On July 1, 2017, courts will determine child support based on the “income shares” model. What Is the Income Shares Model? How Does It Differ from the Current Law? Under the income shares model, both […]

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October 21, 2016

College Bound Children and Requests for Modified Child Support

Child Support



When couples divorce or separate, there are many layers as to how the family will manage themselves afterward. From the division of property to spousal maintenance and child support, are some of the relevant issues. When it comes to the children of a divorce, certain interests must be met to help ensure their best interests are […]

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September 30, 2016

How to File for an Annulment under Illinois Law

Divorce, Marriage



When most people hear of a couple ending their marriage, they automatically assume that the couple is divorcing. For thousands of couples, that is true, however, there are also many couples who choose to file for a legal annulment rather than a divorce. What is the difference? When a person files for a divorce, they […]

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September 23, 2016

Fighting a Child Relocation in Illinois

Child Custody



Learning that your child’s other parent wants to relocate your child can be a frightening experience. Your child, possibly hours away, could end up visiting you even less frequently. Those opportune moments that have given you extra time with them – when the other parent has to work late or go to the doctor – might no […]

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August 2, 2016

How to Handle Parenting Time Schedules When Your Child Is Sick

Child Custody



There can be nothing more upsetting to a parent than to see their child sick. We want nothing more than to be able to do everything in our power to make them feel better, and it is not uncommon for a parent to believe that they are the best one to take care of an […]

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June 20, 2016

Behavior During Divorce

Divorce



It can be hard to take the higher road when you are having an argument with your spouse — and this can be even more so the case if you are going through divorce. No matter how nasty or amicable the divorce seems to be, if you are dissolving your marriage, emotions are bound to be […]

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May 3, 2016

De-Establishing Paternity in Illinois

Paternity



In most cases, biological parents are ordered to pay child support to help provide for expenses related to raising their children. There is, however, a strange and little known about law regarding child custody and support that could enforce a man to pay child support for a child that is not biologically his. That law, along with […]

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April 22, 2016

Child Custody Modifications in Illinois

Child Custody



When the court has issued a final order in an allocation of parental responsibilities case, the case usually isn’t over. Illinois law allows for both parents to ask the court to modify the order in the future. However, before you can get a modification you will need to meet several criteria. Significant Change in Circumstances In most […]

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February 22, 2016

The Role of Civil Unions for Unmarried Couples in Illinois

Civil Unions



Many people mistakenly think of civil unions as something that no longer is needed because of the recent ruling of the Supreme Court extending the right of marriage to same sex couples all across the United States. However, in Illinois, civil unions are still an important part of family law that can benefit both heterosexual and homosexual […]

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January 5, 2016

How Does the Illinois Child Support Process Work When Parents Split Up?

Child Custody



One of the biggest questions parents have when they split up is how will child support work. Parents have a legal duty to financially support their children, and that obligation does not end just because the relationship has ended. Child Support Guidelines Illinois has a set of guidelines judges are required to consider when setting child support. […]

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December 21, 2015

Can Mediation Help You Settle Your Divorce?

Mediation



Divorces can be difficult cases to resolve because the issues are deeply personal and the stakes are so high. However, most people will be happier with a solution they have a role in creating than a solution imposed by a court order. Mediation can help spouses resolve their differences and create a solution that works for everyone. […]

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September 25, 2015

Preparing for an Adoption in Illinois

Adoption



Deciding to bring a child into your life can be an exciting, life changing, and fulfilling decision. There are hundreds of children in the Illinois child welfare system hoping to find a loving parent or family. Having the stability of a strong family life is key to children’s development, and many Illinois residents are qualified […]

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September 18, 2015

Prenuptial Agreements: No Matter What Age You Wed

Premarital agreement



What age presents the least risk of divorce for couples to get married at? For years, young couples have been told it is best to wait until they are older and more settled to wed, but is that really accurate advice? According to a new study, waiting may actually increase the risk of divorce. The study […]

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August 26, 2015

Sexless Marriage and Divorce

Divorce, Illinois divorce lawyer



Lack of sex is one major and very socially acceptable reason for divorce, yet lack of sex — or frequency of it — is a very subjective line to draw. What one couple may call a sexless marriage, another may call very sexually active. So how to draw the line of what is considered a sexless […]

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August 14, 2015

Adoption and Reactive Attachment Disorder

Adoption, Illinois family law attorney, Marriage



When a family decides to adopt a child, it is never an easy decision or one to take lightly. Not only will a new child in the family drastically change family dynamics, but there is also the consideration of the child who is being adopted—will he or she fit in with the rest of the family? Will […]

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August 7, 2015

Divorce Can Make You a Better Parent

Children of Divorce, Divorce, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney



Contrary to sometimes-popular belief, divorce can be good for children. If the marriage is especially explosive, it can be more detrimental to a child’s psyche than the dissolution of the union of his or her parents. When parents who are not in love—or who have an especially volatile relationship—“stay together for the kids,” it can often teach […]

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July 13, 2015

What Marriage Equality Means for Same-Sex Couples

Illinois family law attorney, Marriage, New Illinois Law, Same Sex Marriage



In late June, the Supreme Court announced a historic ruling that effectively standardized marriage laws nationwide. Same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states, and will now be considered in the same ways as straight marriage—with all its ups and downs and confusing or complicating factors. As such, one can assume that the same types of […]

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July 6, 2015

Post-Divorce Finances: The Basics

Division of Property, Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney



If you are going through a divorce, figuring out your financial future can be one of the most daunting prospects of the entire ordeal. Knowing exactly what you are dealing with can help to ensure that you are not left without options after your finances are separate. This can be especially important if you were not […]

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May 11, 2015

Are Your Prenup Fears Unfounded?

Division of Property, Illinois family law attorney, Marriage, Premarital agreement



The stigma surrounding divorce may be tapering; however, the idea of a prenuptial agreement still causes many to run away scared. The suggestion or insistence of a prenuptial agreement may be viewed as a sign that one’s partner plans to end a marriage early, or is not in it—so to speak—for the long haul. It may also be interpreted […]

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April 23, 2015

Civil Unions: Not Just for Same-Sex Couples

Illinois family law attorney, Same Sex Marriage



With the increasing social acceptance of same-sex marriages across the country, many states are moving away from civil unions for same-sex couples. In February of 2014, according to the Cook County Clerk’s office, marriage licenses for same-sex couples became available, and a marriage equality law went into effect for the state of Illinois. While this certainly cut down […]

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March 16, 2015

Divorce and Infidelity: Facts and Figures

Divorce Trends, Illinois family law attorney



Infidelity can tear apart a couple. And for those who have experienced infidelity, it may seem like the leading cause for divorce. However, cheating is not the only major cause for marital dissolution. In fact, according to a report published by Utah State University, a “lack of commitment” is even more common. Moreover, there are several factors […]

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February 16, 2015

Coping with Anxiety over a Joint Custody Agreement

Child Custody, Children of Divorce, Illinois family law attorney



While shared or joint custody may seem like the best and most fair option for all parties involved after a divorce, it is not always easy. According to a personal story in The New York Times, learning how to deal with the separation from your child when it is the other parents’ turn to have custody can be […]

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February 9, 2015

Defining Guardian ad Litem in Illinois

Child Custody, Illinois family law attorney



If you are going through a divorce, or have had a cataclysmic event in your family, issues of child custody may arise. If a court determines that a child is unsafe, or will not be provided for in the home of his or her parents or parent, a court will rule that the child must […]

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January 29, 2015

Divorce and Remarriage in the New Year

Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney, Marriage, Online Dating



It is that time of year again … for divorce. Known as “divorce month,” January sees a surge in divorce filings. Additionally, the first working Monday of the New Year has been dubbed the most popular day of the year to begin divorce proceedings. In an article on Yahoo! News, James McLaren, president of the American Academy […]

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January 23, 2015

Spousal Maintenance Reform Comes to the Land of Lincoln

Division of Property, Illinois family law attorney, Illinois spousal support



For the last several years, advocates of alimony change in Illinois, New Jersey, South Carolina, and a number of other jurisdictions have asked their state legislatures to change spousal support laws. Last year, the Illinois state legislature passed significant revisions to the alimony law in Section 504. A judge still has some discretion when setting an amount and […]

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January 16, 2015

Tips for Telling Your Spouse You Want a Divorce

Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney, Marriage



Initiating a divorce can be extremely difficult and emotional. However, once all other options have been explored and you are ready to begin the process, it is important to seek legal counsel. Working with an experienced professional from the onset of the process can help to save time and money, and it can also provide you with a […]

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January 9, 2015

What is a “Bird’s Nest” Co-Parenting Agreement?

Child Custody, Children of Divorce, Divorce Trends, Illinois family law attorney, Marriage



Divorcing with children is never easy, but a new trend in divorce may make the dissolution of a parents’ marriage easier on children. This is because a so-called “bird’s nest” co-parenting agreement is the most child-centered co-parenting in which divorced parents can engage. A bird’s nest, or “nesting” agreement is one in which the children stay in […]

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December 8, 2014

Tips for Divorce during the Holidays

Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney, Marriage



Divorce is difficult. The holidays are difficult. And when the two coincide, it can be one of the most agonizing times in a person’s life. Even if a marriage has been going downhill for some time, this can be particularly hard to remember during the holiday season when stereotypes of intact families and joyous partnerships […]

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December 1, 2014

Obtaining a Mortgage after Divorce

Division of Property, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney



Moving on after divorce can sometimes mean exactly that: moving. Changing homes can be both emotionally draining and time-consuming. Additionally, in a worst-case scenario, the person who is forced to leave the marital home is not the one who wanted the divorce in the first place. Unfortunately, for many, it does not get easier. According to an […]

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November 20, 2014

Illinois National Adoption Day Festivities Kick Off Saturday

Adoption, Child Custody, Illinois family law attorney, Stepparent Adoption



This year marks the 15th anniversary of National Adoption Day—an initiative started to help move the nearly 10,000 children in U.S. foster care into permanent, loving homes. While it is not run by one advocacy group, it is a collective effort of policymakers, practitioners, and advocates who work together to finalize adoptions that are in the works. […]

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November 18, 2014

Duggars Tie the Knot in Covenant Marriage

Illinois family law attorney



Covenant marriage was back in the news recently, when Jill Duggar of 19 Kids and Counting marriedDerick Dillard in Bentonville, Arkansas. The couple is now expecting their first child. Jill’s sister, Jessa Duggar, recently married Ben Seewald. That ceremony was notable because of a celebrity appearance by actor Kirk Cameron and the couple’s decision to forego the […]

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November 11, 2014

When Mediation Works in Illinois

Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney, Marriage



Ending a marriage is consistently rated as one of the most stressful life events that a person can go through. According to the American Institute of Stress’s Holmes-Rahe Life Stress Inventory, divorce is the second most stressful event a person can endure, second only to the death of a spouse. Marital separation from one’s mate is […]

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November 4, 2014

Divorced Parent Paying for College: Planning Ahead

Child Custody, Children of Divorce, Illinois family law attorney



Sorting through complicated financial issues is one major hurdle that many divorcees fear. There may be complex decisions to make regarding spousal support or alimony, the division of property, or issues of child support when applicable. Additionally, if you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse have children together, sorting out how you plan to pay for your […]

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October 27, 2014

Property Division after Divorce: A Brief Guide

Division of Property, Illinois family law attorney



Difficult emotions, stress, and heated arguments are not the only hurdles divorcing couples face. One of the more tricky aspects of divorce is the division of property. Several gray areas exist and can lead to conflict between separating spouses, especially when an attorney is not present to review ownership and legal stipulations. Although property division is a […]

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September 24, 2014

Grandparent Visitation Rights in Illinois

Child Custody, Children of Divorce, Illinois family law attorney



All aspects of a family are affected by divorce. Not only are the children of divorce affected by the marital dissolution, the parents of the parents are also affected. Grandparent rights are often considered the most complicated visitation arrangements to be settled during a divorce, and not all grandparents have a right to visitation. According to The Huffington […]

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September 18, 2014

Are Courts Taking Away the Rights of Divorced Parents?

Child Custody, Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney



Divorced parents may be losing their rights, at least according to a recent opinion piece in The New York Times. Divorced parents can sue each other; however, married parents cannot. When this happens, judges are often left to determine what is best for the children of divorce—including where they will go to school and where they […]

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September 10, 2014

Back-to-School Co-Parenting

Child Custody, Children of Divorce, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney



If you are a parent, back-to-school time can be one of the most stressful and busiest of the year. There are new clothes to buy, supplies to shop for, schedules to sort, and busy student days to work into your workday. This can be all the more complicated if you are divorced and have decided […]

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September 4, 2014

Advice for Co-Parenting after Divorce

Children of Divorce, Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney



Divorce is never easy. But sharing parenting duties after marital dissolution may be an even more difficult than the divorce itself. Not only does co-parenting after divorce force you to remain on good enough terms with your ex-spouse and successfully navigate shared schedules, duties, and responsibilities, it also means that you will likely have to see your ex-spouse […]

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August 7, 2014

To Keep Or Not to Keep the Marital Home

Division of Property, Illinois family law attorney



One of the most complicated steps of divorce is the division of marital property. If you and your spouse have been married for several years, this is all the more complex—especially if you have multiple pieces of property, cars, or share financial or operational duties in a small business. If you are considering divorce, the importance […]

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