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While each divorce is different, many people have similar concerns when taking the first step down this path. Here are a few of the most common questions we hear during the initial consultation – as well as guidance on ways to address each issue. What should I do with our bank accounts? Spouses often want to start separating cash accounts as soon as possible because it feels like the an action they can take right away. However, it is important to keep in mind that until your divorce is finalized, all assets are jointly owned and any accounts in which…
Stephanie Tang moderated a panel discussion about social media evidence and The Stored Communications Act at the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) Young Lawyers professional development lunch on September 24, 2019. Karen VanderMeer of Badesch Abramovitch served as co-moderator and panelists included Khalid Hasan of Lucas & Cardenas and Michael Zhang of the ARDC. Stephanie is a member of the ISBA Young Lawyers Division Section Council. She serves on the networking and young lawyers sub-committees, helping young lawyers connect with mentors and learn tips to apply in their daily practice. The ISBA’s primary focus is to assist Illinois lawyers in…
Oftentimes in the stress of a divorce proceeding, a key member of the family is overlooked: a beloved pet. As of January 1, 2018, the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act was amended to give the courts additional guidance when considering furry – or sometimes not so furry – friends. This amended law specifically applies to companion animals, not service animals under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Either spouse may now file a petition for temporary allocation of sole or joint possession of a companion animal. If the court finds the companion animal is a marital asset, which is…
Stephanie Tang shared insights on family law major legislative changes and cases in the Southern Illinois University Law Journal Summer 2019 issue. Through this article, Stephanie helped family law practitioners and judges stay up-to-date on the most significant legislative changes to statutory amendments in four areas of family law following the 2016 overhaul to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. She also provided a summary of select family law-related cases from 2017 to 2018. Stephanie is an associate at Kogut & Wilson. She represents individuals in all aspects of family and matrimonial law proceedings and strives to provide…
Kogut & Wilson is pleased to announce their expansion with the opening of a new office in northwestern Park Ridge. This is the firm’s second location and will allow firm attorneys to serve suburban clients. “Providing excellent client service remains our focus as the firm continues to grow,” said partner Eva Kogut. “With our new Park Ridge office, our clients will have the opportunity to connect with us in multiple places, selecting whatever location is best suited for their schedule.” The office is located at 350 S. Northwest Highway, just blocks from Park Ridge’s Uptown neighborhood and easily accessible…
After you make the difficult decision to divorce, you’re faced with even more challenging choices. What are my options for getting a divorce? Many people think going to court is their only option, but mediation and collaborative divorce may be a better fit for your situation. Litigation: The most common and well-known route Litigation involves an attorney for either one or both parties and a divorce judgment that is entered into the court. It can be a smooth process if both parties agree to the terms in advance, but it may turn contentious when they don’t. In these cases, hearings…
Bryan Wilson has been appointed to the Illinois State Bar Association Standing Committee on Legislation, which has the responsibility for the execution of the ISBA legislative program. For nearly 40 years, the Standing Committee on Legislation has been responsible for proposing the rules and regulations that govern the Illinois State Bar. Bryan will serve as one of 16 members who have demonstrated interest in issues affecting the legal profession and the administering of justice in Illinois. He will serve a X- year term. Founded in 1877, the Illinois State Bar Association is the premier legal association in the state. As…
Most family law attorneys use a well-worn script for their client intake process. But do they ask the right questions? Years of experience have taught Eva Kogut that there is a better way. The Typical Aproach When a client meets with an attorney for guidance on divorce, the discussion often centers on the facts regarding the process and possible outcomes in court. The attorney is trained to immediately present and explain various legal strategies for divorce. While all of this is very useful, the client may need or want to talk about issues in their family structure that are triggering…
Kogut & Wilson is pleased to announce that Stephanie Tang has received the Illinois State Bar Association’s (ISBA) Young Lawyer of the Year Award for Cook County. Each year the ISBA Young Lawyers Division presents this award to two individuals, one who practices within Cook County and one outside the county. Nominated by numerous industry peers, Stephanie was recognized for her significant contributions as an outstanding young lawyer, including her achievements in the practice of law, contributions to the ISBA and legal profession, as well as her service to the community. Stephanie focuses her practice on representing individuals in all…
IRMO Salvatore Muddies Child Support Modification Waters Up until Salvatore, a formerly unemployed spouse obtaining a full-time job was almost a guaranteed “substantial change in circumstances” that would warrant a modification of child support in court.  The Salvatore decision complicates this analysis by placing a greater focus on what was initially contemplated at the time the prior child support order was entered. Pertinent Facts: Three kids were born to the parties. The original Marital Settlement Agreement (“MSA”) provided Husband would pay 32% of his net income for child support under old child support statute (amended July 1, 2017).  Wife was…
Many parents relocate their families over the summer – often from the city to the suburbs – as to not disrupt their children’s school year. But divorced parents may not realize their parenting agreement has specific provisions about where and when they move. Legal and physical custody provisions Divorce agreements in Illinois often address both legal and physical custody. Legal custody deals with the rights parents have to make major life decisions such as schooling or religious upbringing. Physical custody determines where the children should live full-time and sets parenting time for the non-custodial parent. Regardless of the specifics of…
Stephanie Tang will share insights on the options divorcing couples have for addressing joint property like the marital home as part of a webinar hosted by Guaranteed Rate later this month. During this hour-long program, Stephanie will discuss the pros and cons of the options divorcing couples have for the marital home, including selling, title transfers and refinancing. She will be joined by Michael Schenk, Vice President of Mortgage Lending at Guaranteed Rate. The webinar will be held on April 22, 2019 at noon. To RSVP, contact stephanie@kogutwilson.com. The post Stephanie Tang Discusses Options for Marital Home During Divorce
Is Cryptocurrency The New Swiss Bank Account?   Introduction Imagine you have a coin that is worth thousands of U.S. Dollars.  Except unlike the traditional coin that you can hold in your hand, this coin only exists digitally.  This is the concept behind Bitcoin, the first and most well-established cryptocurrency.  Cryptocurrency is a new class of assets that is becoming increasingly popular, not only in the United States, but across the world.  Cryptocurrency defies the traditional notions of “currency”, in the sense that there is no central issuing authority or governmental regulatory body.  Exchanges and transfers of cryptocurrency are encrypted…
As college acceptance letters begin coming in for high school seniors, parents are tackling the question of how they will afford it all. Divorced parents have additional factors to consider both when completing financial aid forms and when negotiating with a former spouse about contributions. What does your divorce settlement say? Reviewing the divorce agreement is an important first step. Many people mistakenly believe that their former spouse is required to pay 50% of college expenses, but most divorce settlement agreements do not specify college contributions, as it is difficult to predict figures until a college has been chosen. Have…
The surprising lack of a prenuptial agreement is one of the many interesting facets of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’s impending divorce. Prenups are becoming more common – and not just among the one percent. Here are a few key learnings from this high-profile split. A prenup is a contract entered into prior to marriage that describes how you and your future spouse agree to divide your property in the event of a divorce. If you don’t have a prenup, your state’s laws will determine how your assets are distributed if you decide to divorce. Where you live matters Mr. and…
Eva Kogut will present new ways to approach new client consultations for family law clients on March 21, 2019 at the Chicago Bar Association. As part of the March CBA Collaborative Process Subcommittee of the Domestic Relations Committee, which Eva co-chairs, she will discuss pros and cons of the traditional new client intake process versus one that is in line with the collaborative divorce process. “Instead of being solely focused on the law, the collaborative intake process should be about understanding the clients’ needs, goals and preferences through open-ended questions and rethinking the fact pattern presentation,” Eva says. Eva will…