Sherer Law Offices

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Scott’s Law was enacted in 2002 in response to a fatal traffic accident that occurred on December 23, 2000, in which Chicago Fire Lieutenant Scott Gillen was struck and killed after responding to a car crash.  In response to this, Illinois legislatures passed what is known as Scott’s Law, or the “Move Over law.” Originally, this law required all drivers to slow down and move over when approaching a police car or other emergency vehicle on the highway.[1] In 2017, the law was expanded to apply to require drivers to slow down and move over when approaching any vehicle…
Payment of maintenance or child support can – and often does – occur through direct deductions from an individual’s paycheck.  A person owed support is able to submit an Income Withholding for Support order to the court, which is then given to the employer of the person who owes the support. These forms can be used for both current and past-due support. An employer who receives this form is required to withhold the required support amount from the employee’s paycheck and pay the funds directly to the Illinois State Disbursement Unit.  The State Disbursement Unit (SDU) then pays the individual…
It’s happened to nearly everyone: you look in the rearview mirror and realize the red and blue flashing lights are aimed at you. From minor traffic infractions to more serious cases, being pulled over by the police, no matter the situation, causes panic. It is important to know your rights if this happens to you. In Illinois, an officer must have reasonable suspicion to pull someone over, a standard that comes from the Fourth Amendment.  Reasonable suspicion means that a reasonable police officer would be generally suspicious of some illegal activity, ranging from a traffic violation to a more serious…
Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its ruling on Murphy v National Collegiate Athletic Association last year, which provided a framework for state-sanctioned sports betting, many lawmakers have been lining up to take advantage.  So far, seven states have passed some form of state-regulated sports betting: Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey, Mississippi, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island.  It appears Illinois may follow suit. Slightly different “Sports Wagering Act” bills have been introduced in both the Illinois House of Representatives and Senate. Each bill would allow sports wagering at authorized gaming facilities.  However, they differ as to how sports betting would…
On April 8, 2019, Governor Pritzker signed legislation officially raising the legal age to purchase tobacco in Illinois from 18 to 21.  House Bill 345, otherwise known as the “Tobacco 21” bill, states that no person under the age of 21 may purchase tobacco products, electronic cigarettes, or any other alternative nicotine product, and imposes various penalties on businesses that do not follow the new law.[1]  While the bill raises the age to purchase tobacco products and imposes penalties on businesses who sell these products to people under 21, it also eliminates the penalty for underage possession of…
Crime Free Housing, a relatively recent phenomena, has begun to spread through Illinois as well as many other states.  However, what does that mean for local residents?  Why has it proven so divisive?  Sherer Law Offices is here to walk you through why some people are praising the Crime Free Housing initiative while others condemn it. The Crime Free Housing program is essentially a partnership between the city, landlords, and their tenants.  The program is designed to reduce crime rates around residential rental properties and allow landlords to evict tenants found connected to those crimes.  Property owners do this by…
The exchange of engagement and wedding rings is a symbolic and important part of many relationships, but what happens to them if a marriage or engagement ends? [1] ENGAGEMENT RINGS Illinois courts identify engagement rings as gifts made in the contemplation of marriage.  Courts recognize that, since an engagement ring is a gift given in the contemplation of marriage, once the promise to marry is broken, the person who breaks the promise is not entitled to retain the ring. [2].  Illinois law does not look at fault in determining if a ring should be returned in this situation.  For this…
Non-payment of court ordered child support can significantly affect the well-being of a child. Across the nation, only 58% of one-parent households have a court ordered support agreement, and of that percentage, only one-half receive the full support they are owed. [1] In Illinois, non-payment of child support is a serious offense and a series of laws exist to collect delinquent payments and ensure future payments. In the past 25 years, Illinois has substantially reformed child support laws. Illinois repealed the statute of limitations on the collection of past-due child support. Additionally, past due payments are now subject to statutory…
Relocation is one of the more complex areas of Family Law.  Relocation issues arise when one parent wants to move the children a significant distance, whether in the state of Illinois or to another state.  When the children’s parents are separated, relocation requires specific authorization from the court before the children can be moved. This past February, Rep. Natalie A. Manley introduced house bill 2186, which proposes to change the definition of relocation as it relates to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA). [1]While this might seem trivial, if passed, it will seriously alter when court…
Published in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletinby Andrew Maloney A civil union did not confer parenting rights to a woman whose partner died, a downstate appeals court has ruled. The 5th District Appellate Court panel held that a person in a civil union does not qualify as a stepparent to their partner’s biological child under state law. The appellate panel in Mount Vernon ruled in an April 11 opinion that Kris Fulkerson did not have standing to seek visitation and responsibilities for her deceased partner’s child, A.S., under the Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. Justice Judy L. Cates wrote…
Many couples will enter into a prenuptial agreement (or a “prenup”) before they get married.  These agreements are intended to decide how your assets would be divided and financial terms of what would happen if you were to get divorced.  While it can be uncomfortable to think about separating from someone you are just about to marry, prenuptial agreements are a good idea.  When done correctly, they allow you to make what could be important financial decisions for both you and your partner at a time when you are getting along, rather than possibly having to litigate issues down the…
If you are currently in the midst of a divorce or other proceeding involving child custody, visitation, or division of assets, then you are likely familiar with the term “mediation.” While the term may conjure up images of corporate board rooms, family mediation in Illinois is actually a much different process.  Understanding what happens during a family mediation can make you more confident going into the process and help you receive all the benefits that a mediation can offer. Mediation is used as an alternative to a litigated divorce.  It can be entered into both voluntarily or by court order. In…
Currently pending in the Illinois Legislature is House Bill 0185, which if enacted, may prove to have major ramifications in any divorce case involving children.  Under this new bill, unless specifically stated in a court approved parenting plan, each parent would be granted equal parenting time. [1] This award of equal parenting time would a rebuttable presumption and states that the court will look to all relevant factors when allocating parenting time.  It goes on to list 17 factors the court must consider when making a determination. Several of the enumerated factors include: the wishes of each parent seeking parenting…
Whether you are a landlord or a tenant, the eviction process can often feel confusing and downright unfair.  A tenant may feel as though they are being taken advantage of or being preyed upon during a vulnerable time in their life.  A landlord may feel as though the process is overly bureaucratic and requires too many steps.  Whichever side of the aisle you fall on, Sherer Law Offices is here to share a few things every landlord and tenant should know about the eviction process. To begin, a landlord must have some legal reason to force a tenant to move…
Anyone under an obligation to pay child support or maintenance has probably heard the phrase “substantial change in circumstances.” This is the standard typically required to get a modification of support or maintenance unless the order is able to be reviewed for other reasons, such as a certain amount of time that has passed since the last order requiring the support.  Although used frequently, it can be difficult to pin down what exactly constitutes a “substantial change in circumstances” for the purpose of a support modification.  What seems substantial to you may not be substantial in the eyes of the…