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Recent Blog Posts

Why a Child’s Age Matters When Creating a Parenting Plan

 Posted on July 14, 2024 in Child Custody / Parental Responsibilities

Cook County, IL parenting plan attorneyIf you are divorcing, you know how much stress it can cause emotionally, mentally and physically. If you have children, remember that parental separation or divorce is often traumatic for children, too. The effects of divorce impact each child differently, with most children in the same age group experiencing similar issues.

As part of your divorce, you will need to create and submit a parenting plan that outlines various parental duties and parenting time arrangements. To protect the best interests of your children, you need to customize your parenting plan with their ages in mind. If you need help tailoring your parental responsibilities to your children’s ages, contact an experienced divorce attorney.

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3 Things Homemakers Should Do in an Illinois Divorce

 Posted on June 27, 2024 in Spousal Support

Skokie, IL divorce lawyerDivorce comes with many kinds of challenges. Spouses who decide to end their marriage often face financial, emotional, and mental difficulties. For homemakers or stay-at-home parents, these challenges are sometimes more pronounced. This is particularly true of financial difficulties stemming from divorce. Homemakers usually are not part of the workforce and have trouble finding gainful employment after the marriage ends.

As with many divorces, however, an experienced Illinois divorce attorney can help minimize these challenges or prevent them completely. If you are a homemaker facing divorce, consider discussing the following courses of action with your lawyer.

Ask for Interim Spousal Maintenance

If you are a homemaker or stay-at-home parent and your spouse is employed, a judge may order your spouse to pay you spousal maintenance, or alimony, after the divorce. This will provide you with some measure of support while you work on becoming self-sufficient. 

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3 Things to Know About Financial Restraining Orders in Divorce

 Posted on June 18, 2024 in Divorce

When people hear “restraining order,” they usually think of domestic abuse. These restraining orders, called OCook County, IL divorce lawyerrders of Protection, are issued against abusive spouses. In some divorce cases, however, a court will issue a financial restraining order. As the name suggests, the purpose of this order is to protect against certain types of financial abuse.

In some divorces — particularly those involving high-value assets — one spouse might try to hide, spend, or destroy assets before it is divided between the parties. If you have reason to believe your spouse will do this, ask your Illinois divorce attorney to petition the court for a financial restraining order.

Here are three things to know about financial restraining orders in an Illinois divorce.

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How Can Cryptocurrency Impact My Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on May 26, 2024 in Spousal Support

Skokie, IL divorce lawyerFinancial assets are a major part of the divorce process. They need to be accounted for and divided between the spouses. They also play a role in determining which spouse pays family maintenance, such as spousal support and child support, and how much maintenance payments are. When making these decisions, a court will take into account:

  • Bank account balances

  • Investments

  • Real estate

  • Pensions

  • 401Ks

But what about less traditional financial assets like cryptocurrency? Crypto is considered a financial asset and can impact divorce in several ways, which this article will discuss. If you are storing cryptocurrency, make sure to consult an Illinois divorce attorney who can walk you through your options.

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Can I Live With My Spouse if We Are Legally Separated?

 Posted on May 17, 2024 in Divorce

Chicago, IL legal separation lawyerMany couples who feel their marriage is failing file for divorce. But Illinois law offers another option that some couples find appealing: legal separation. Being legally separated allows two spouses to live separately but remain legally married. It is seen as a halfway point between marriage and divorce and has several benefits.

Sometimes, however, divorce may be the better choice. The best way to know which is best for you is to consult a skilled Illinois divorce attorney who can explain to you the pros and cons of each option.

This article will discuss what legal separation is, why some couples choose it, and whether you can continue living with your spouse if you are legally separated.

What is Legal Separation?

Illinois law allows couples who live “separate and apart” to file for legal separation. This means that before the spouses petition the court they must be living separately. Being legally separated has many similarities to divorce, for example:

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What is Alternative Dispute Resolution in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on April 24, 2024 in Divorce

Chicago, IL divorce attorneyFighting out a divorce in court, otherwise known as litigation, should be a last resort. Divorce court battles are often costly, hostile, and messy. For this reason, judges usually encourage divorcing couples to first try resolving their differences outside of court through alternative dispute resolution. 

There are two main types of alternative dispute resolution when it comes to divorce:

  • Mediation

  • Collaborative law

This article will discuss each type of alternative dispute resolution. A qualified Illinois attorney can help you decide which one is best for you and can guide you through the entire divorce process.

What is Mediation?

When two people get divorced and disagree on certain issues, a judge will usually order them to attend mediation. This is where both sides will meet with a mediator, who is a neutral third party appointed by the court to help them resolve their differences. The mediator is trained in negotiation and will try to get both parties to compromise on the issues that are in dispute. In a mediation session, the mediator will meet with both parties together and then place them in separate rooms, going back and forth to meet with each one separately.

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Can I Change My Child’s Guardian Ad Litem in Illinois?

 Posted on April 11, 2024 in Child Custody / Parental Responsibilities

Skokie, IL child custody lawyerWhenever a legal proceeding involves a child, such as a divorce or child custody case, a court can appoint a guardian ad litem. A guardian ad litem (GAL), which is Latin for “a guardian for the lawsuit,” is a person who advocates for a child’s interests in any court proceeding that involves an underage or mentally incompetent child. In Illinois, GALs are attorneys who have gone through extra training.

If you have questions about appointing a GAL for your child, it is best to consult with a family law attorney who can advise you.

This article will discuss what a GAL does, when one is appointed, and whether you can change your child’s GAL.

What Does a GAL Do?

A GAL’s job is to make sure the child’s interests are protected during court proceedings. Once appointed, the GAL will usually launch an investigation into the child’s history, needs, living environment, relatives, and other life elements. By Illinois law, a GAL must do the following:

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Can I Adopt a Child I Am Related to in Illinois?

 Posted on March 28, 2024 in Adoption

IL family lawyerIt is an incredibly difficult decision for someone to relinquish their parental rights. This conclusion is generally by people for whom life has been too tough to function as parents are expected to. Perhaps the parents are dealing with severe mental or emotional conditions or battling a substance addiction, and they are unable to give their child a suitable home regardless of how much they love them. In some cases, a relative of the parents may want to adopt the child. This can often be the best option for the child, although it can be a complex process for the people who wish to adopt them. If you are considering related adoption of a family member’s child, speak with an experienced Cook County, IL adoption lawyer who can review the case and explain the types of complications you might expect to face.

How Does Related Adoption Work?

Related adoption happens when someone related by blood or marriage to a child adopts them. The adopted parents can be aunts and uncles, step-parents, siblings, or grandparents, among others. 

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How Can Social Media Affect My Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on March 08, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerIn 2024, the Internet is simply a fact of life. As it has spread through every facet of modern society, people without smartphones have a difficult time staying on top of updates ranging from developments at their work, changes at their child’s school, their medical appointments, and even which groceries will be on sale on any given day. Social media networks are a crucial part of many people's daily routines and are used for everything from wishing a happy birthday to beloved relatives, receiving payments, and even finding dates.

With all the advantages that increased access to social media has presented, there are also more challenges, particularly regarding individuals’ privacy. Where in the past a person might have simply needed to call in sick to work, nowadays, they need to make sure there is nothing online that might indicate to their boss that it was not illness keeping them out of the office. Like in other aspects of life, social media has been playing an increasingly influential role in divorce proceedings in recent years. If you are considering divorce and are concerned about how your social media presence might affect it, a Chicago, IL divorce lawyer can review your online posts and interactions and guide you on any modifications that might be advisable.

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What Happens to Child Support Payments if I Lose My Job?

 Posted on February 22, 2024 in Child Support

IL child supportWhen you first arranged your divorce settlement, there were so many things that you and your ex needed to work out: Where would your children live? How often would each of you see them? Will either pay the other alimony? Who can make important decisions on your child’s behalf?  How much child support will you need to pay? What are you supposed to do if things in your life have changed from the way they were back then? If for example, you make monthly child support payments to your ex and now you are unemployed, are you expected to keep making those payments somehow? For answers to these and more questions, you can speak with a Skokie, IL divorce settlement lawyer.

Can I Be Granted a Child Support Modification in Illinois?

Under certain circumstances, it is legally acceptable to modify aspects of a divorce decree, including those that refer to child support payments. For example, if the paying spouse has unexpectedly and involuntarily experienced a loss of income, whether the income has stopped altogether or decreased significantly, this would be considered a reasonable case for someone to seek a divorce decree modification. If you quit your job, this would not be considered unexpected or involuntary. If you have chosen to leave your job and thus lose your income as a result, this is not considered appropriate grounds for seeking a modification.

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