100 North LaSalle Street, Suite 1111,
Chicago, IL 60602

FREE LIMITED CONSULTATIONS

call us312-984-1514

Recent Blog Posts

What Can I Expect From a Divorce if My Spouse is Physically Abusive? 

 Posted on August 12, 2022 in Uncategorized

rolling meadows divorce lawyerIllinois is a no-fault divorce state, meaning that spouses cannot give specific reasons for getting divorced other than “irreconcilable differences.” Even ugly or distasteful behaviors such as infidelity and domestic violence will not give one spouse preferential treatment during divorce proceedings. That being said, judges are very sensitive to the physical and emotional danger that domestic violence can cause to spouses and children, and there are protections available to victims of domestic violence. If you are thinking about getting divorced from an abusive spouse, here are some ways you might expect your divorce to be different. 

Getting an Order of Protection

When you are ready to file for divorce, it may be wise to get an order of protection. These are legally binding court orders that require an abuser to stay away from a victim and his or her children, including their schools and workplaces. You can get an Emergency Order of Protection ex parte, meaning your spouse does not have to be present during the initial hearing. However, to extend the order of protection, you will both need to appear before a judge to present your evidence. Your attorney can help you gather evidence and file for an order of protection. 

Continue Reading ››

Paternity Disputes in Cook County

 Posted on July 25, 2022 in Paternity

cook county paternity lawyerThe best interests of the child is the backbone of not only the family law system but, ethically, society as a whole. Notwithstanding abuse or neglect, parents generally have certain rights, including the right to parenting time.  However, the situation becomes much more complicated when paternity of a child is unknown. The complexities and nuances of sensitive issues like paternity can be painful, humiliating, and frustrating to both the mother and the father, and most especially, the child.  A  family law attorney can advocate for parentage rights.

Establishing Paternity

Three ways in which paternity is established include the following:

  • A Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity (VAP) form must be signed by both parents and filed and witnessed by the Department of Healthcare and Family Services.

  • The Department of Healthcare and Family Services Child Support Services issues an Administrative Paternity Order.

    Continue Reading ››

Child Support and College Education Expenses in Chicago

 Posted on July 08, 2022 in Child Support

chicago child support lawyerNegotiating education expenses for a child in a divorce decree can be contentious, especially if the divorce is acrimonious. In Illinois, child support usually ceases once a child is 18 years old and graduates from high school. After child support obligations cease, some divorced parents may still need to pay higher education expenses. Effective January 1, 2016, Section 513 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act affirms that divorced parents may be required to contribute to their non-minor child’s post-high-school education and living expenses. 

Contingent to the divorce decree, the college contributions that each parent and child are obliged to make can be modified. A divorce attorney understands the complexities of non-minor support and can help modify or enforce the divorce decree.

Stipulations of the Illinois Law 

Section 513 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act includes certain stipulations. Since the financial circumstances of each parent and student may change, the divorce decree can be amended at the court's discretion. A parent may no longer be able to pay tuition and living expenses because of unemployment, illness, or disability. Alternatively, a parent may purposely neglect these obligations.

Continue Reading ››

Same-Sex Marital Rights and Divorce in Cook County 

 Posted on June 15, 2022 in Divorce

chicago divorce lawyerThe LGBTQ+ community has historically struggled to attain equality. Not so long ago, a spouse of a same-sex couple did not even have the right to visit an ill or dying partner in the hospital.  Unless there was a written agreement, the homemaker or domestic partner of a same-sex couple was not eligible to inherit the estate of a deceased breadwinner.  Instead, the estate would be liquidated and divided among blood relatives, even if the relatives were estranged. Effective June 1, 2014, Illinois recognized same-sex marriage. Same-sex spouses can get married and, if the marriage does not work out, they can get divorced

Divorce involving homosexual couples is typically the same as divorce involving heterosexual couples. However, there may be additional complications regarding child custody and other matters. 

Rights of Same-Sex Couples in Illinois 

The rights that same-sex married couples now retain include but are not limited to the following. 

Continue Reading ››

Domestic Violence and Orders of Protection

 Posted on June 08, 2022 in Domestic Violence

cook county protection order lawyerIn the United States, one in three women and one in seven men are victims of domestic violence. Due to fear, embarrassment, or shame, domestic violence incidents are underreported, so the actual statistics are probably higher. The abused, of course, have nothing to be ashamed of as they hold no culpability for the perpetrator's behavior. 

Domestic violence does not discriminate and affects all races, creeds, sexual orientations, and educational and socioeconomic backgrounds. A domestic violence attorney can help victims obtain orders of protection to help safeguard them from abusers.

Domestic violence devastates families and is detrimental to society. It comprises physical violence and many other forms of abuse.

Seven Types of Domestic Violence

  1. Physical Abuse – Offenders physically assault victims by any means, such as slapping, punching, shoving, strangling, dragging, pulling by the hair, kicking, stabbing, shooting, suffocating, or strangling.           

    Continue Reading ››

Parental Relocation Disputes

 Posted on May 19, 2022 in Child Custody / Parental Responsibilities

shutterstock_76317310.jpg Divorce and child custody arrangements can be traumatic for a child, but uprooting a child from one city or state to another can elicit another host of traumatizing challenges. Motives such as employment advancement or a better educational opportunity might be a compelling reason for parental relocation. Still, the child's best interest should remain at the forefront of any life-changing decision. According to Illinois law, a parent with 50 percent or more parenting time is permitted to relocate the child without permission from the other parent or the court, so long as the relocation does not exceed a specific radius. 

When a move exceeds a certain radius, it is considered a relocation, necessitating permission from the other parent. If a parental relocation is in dispute, the parent can petition the court. 

Parental Relocation Law 

Effective January 1, 2022, Section 750 ILCS 603.5 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act was amended with Section (a-5). This amendment allows the child's relocation to be temporary until a final judgment is made as long as it serves the child's best interests. The parental responsibilities of the original custody decree, including parenting time and decision-making, remain unchanged throughout the temporary basis of the relocation. This modification benefits the relocating parent by eliminating the waiting period for the court's final decision. Furthermore, Section (a-5) enables the family to temporarily assess how the relocation will affect the child and disputing parent.  

Continue Reading ››

Ten Advantages of Legal Separation

 Posted on May 06, 2022 in Uncategorized

shutterstock_605213087-2.jpg Legal separation is an alternative to divorce, offering the disputing spouses space, security, and time to evaluate their marriage. Although not a surefire precursor to divorce, like divorce, legal separation also requires a court order. To seek a legal separation, married spouses must live apart and address parental responsibilities, child support, and spousal support. Divorce can be emotionally strenuous and financially draining. Legal separation might be a viable solution as it can prepare families for the finalization of divorce or give them a chance of reconciliation.

Similarities and Differences between Legal Separation and Divorce

In a legal separation, all assets and debts accumulated after the separation are non-marital, but benefits like health insurance are still shared. Legally separated spouses are granted the liberty to assess their marital strife peacefully. Legal separation can be temporary as there is always a possibility of a reunion. Separated spouses are still technically married.

Continue Reading ››

Child Support Basics for Parents in Illinois

 Posted on April 26, 2022 in Child Support

Chicago child support attorneyDivorced and unmarried parents still need to provide financial support to their children. In Illinois, this is accomplished through child support payments. Many parents are confused about their child support rights and responsibilities in Illinois. They do not know how much payments will be or who will receive payments. Parents also have questions about what to do when a parent is not paying child support. Whether you are unmarried, divorced, or intend to divorce soon, it is important to understand how child support is handled in Illinois.

Calculating the Amount of Support

Divorcing spouses are able to reach their own agreements about divorce issues like property division or child custody. However, child support is always decided by the court. The amount that a parent pays is based on a mathematical formula that takes both parents’ financial circumstances into account. The parent with less parenting time (previously called visitation) pays child support to the parent with greater parenting time. Courts can deviate from the child support formula in certain situations, including with one or both parents have an exceptionally high income.

Continue Reading ››

I Was Accused of Child Neglect. What Next?

 Posted on April 14, 2022 in Family Law

Chicago DCFS investigation lawyerAs a parent, grandparent, or other individual tasked with caring for children, an accusation of neglect or abuse can be shocking and offensive. If you have been accused of neglecting your child, you may be unsure of how to respond to the situation. You may be full of questions. Will I be investigated by the DCFS? Will I lose custody of my kids? Will I go to jail? This type of uncertainty is normal. The best thing to do in a situation like this is to work with a skilled criminal defense lawyer experienced in defending against accusations of child neglect and abuse.

DCFS Investigations in Chicago

In Illinois, the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) is the government entity that investigates allegations of child abuse or neglect. You may have learned about the accusations against you because a DCFS investigation has been launched against you. Many people in this situation feel like the DCFS automatically assumes accusations of child abuse or neglect are true, even if there is little evidence to support this presumption. Fortunately, parents and guardians have rights and will be given a chance to defend themselves.

Continue Reading ››

Do Wives Always Get Alimony After an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on March 27, 2022 in Divorce

Chicago alimony attorneyMany spouses are awarded alimony, or spousal maintenance, both during and after an Illinois divorce. Yet while alimony used to be nearly ubiquitous for women, who were generally the spouse responsible for raising children, Illinois law has changed to reflect the fact that women are often at least as active in the workforce as their partners. 

Among other modifications that modernized the law, there is now no guarantee that a wife will get either full custody or spousal maintenance after a divorce. However, if one spouse would be at a significant financial disadvantage after a marriage ends, a court may order alimony payments. Here are some factors that can influence whether spousal maintenance will be part of your divorce decree. 

Did One Spouse Make Significantly More Than the Other? 

If one spouse outearned the other throughout the marriage and the quality of life of the lesser-earning spouse would be significantly diminished after the divorce, a court may order temporary spousal maintenance even if the lesser-earning spouse is working. Unless the marriage lasted more than 20 years, spousal maintenance will likely only be temporary until the lesser-earning spouse has enough time to get on his or her feet after the divorce. 

Continue Reading ››

Back to Top