Calabrese Associates Blog

Blog Authors

Latest from Calabrese Associates Blog

When an adult in Illinois is sufficiently disabled such that he or she is unable to make or communicate decisions about their care, living arrangements, and finances, legal guardianship may be necessary. Illinois law provides legal protection for its adult disabled citizens and Illinois has one of the most progressive guardianship laws in the US, with helpful procedures for appointing guardians and detailing the responsibilities of guardianship.
Serving as a guardian for a disabled adult is a major responsibility. If you are considering becoming a guardian, it is important to understand what you can expect and what will be expected
Continue Reading What Are the Responsibilities of a Disabled Adult Guardian in Illinois?

Parents in Illinois who are struggling with a chronic or terminal illness may reach the point where they feel unable to care for their child properly. When this happens, or when a parent anticipates it will happen in the near future, he or she may decide to share their parental rights with someone who can better care for the child. 
A standby guardian is a person who willingly takes parental rights on behalf of a child’s custodial parent who is very sick, disabled, or deceased. Just as a parent would be, a standby guardian becomes responsible for caring for the
Continue Reading Can I Use Standby Guardianship if I am Terminally Ill? 

Parents getting divorced in Illinois frequently struggle to resolve issues related to the children. Determining child support, dividing parenting time, and allocating parental responsibilities can be very difficult for parents who are locked in conflict and unable to cooperate. Although most parents can prioritize their children’s best interests even during divorce, some cases require court intervention. In cases like this, a court may appoint a guardian ad litem (GAL) to determine a child’s best interests. If you have had a guardian ad litem assigned to your case and want to know more about what to expect, read on. 
Continue Reading What Should I Do if a Guardian ad Litem Has Been Assigned to My Case? 

Life is complicated and unpredictable, and sometimes unexpected events cause a parent to be incapable of caring for their child. Whether due to mental illness, substance abuse, child abuse or neglect, or death, children in Illinois sometimes need care from an adult who is not their parent. If no family members are available to care for a child, the child may have to enter a foster home. But if a family member like a sibling or a grandparent is available, they may be able to get legal guardianship of the child.

Legal Guardianship
Children moving into the care of the
Continue Reading Can I Become the Guardian of My Sibling in Illinois?

Financial conflict is one of the most common reasons for divorce in Illinois. Whether one spouse is a spendthrift, is chronically unemployed, or the stress of managing a household’s finances is simply too great, couples frequently get divorced because of money issues. 
Sometimes a couple’s financial problems are so great that they find themselves considering bankruptcy at the same time that they are ending their marriage. In Illinois, the law allows spouses to get divorced and file for bankruptcy simultaneously, but doing so is not necessarily a good idea. In this blog post, we will examine common strategies for combining
Continue Reading Should We Declare Bankruptcy During Our Illinois Divorce?

Individuals getting divorced in Illinois are often very private about the intimate details of the divorce process and final judgment. This is especially true of high net worth individuals, who frequently have the added concern that their divorce may be of some interest to the public. Whether a couple has a public profile and wants to keep celebrity reporters out of their business, or a private couple wants to avoid a busybody neighbor with a history of spreading rumors, there are many legitimate reasons for wanting to avoid public exposure after divorce.
Unfortunately, fear of embarrassment is usually not a
Continue Reading How Can I Protect My Illinois Divorce from Public Scrutiny?

Getting divorced touches nearly every part of someone’s life: their finances, their relationships, and their children. It is natural for individuals in Illinois who are considering divorce, especially at a later age, to feel nervous about what could happen to their retirement prospects if they get divorced. Will everything I ever worked for be divided? Does this mean I will never be able to retire? 
Although many retirement benefits, such as pension plans and 401(k) accounts will need to be part of the asset division process, social security benefits are uniquely protected by federal law. Illinois divorce
Continue Reading Common Questions About Divorce and Social Security Benefits

High net worth couples getting divorced in Illinois face a particularly challenging marital asset division process. In addition to determining what is and is not considered a marital asset, unique or high-value assets must be valued and divided. One asset, in particular, can be difficult to value and divide: Stock options. Understanding how stock options are typically handled by Illinois law will make it easier for spouses to ensure they get an equitable share of their marital assets. 
What Are Stock Options? 
Stock options are sophisticated financial instruments that give an investor the right to buy or sell a stock
Continue Reading How are Stock Options Handled in an Illinois Divorce?

Nobody knows the value of hard work like an Illinois business owner. Businesses require so much investment of time, money, and personal sacrifice that the prospect of dividing your business in a divorce can be gut-wrenching.
Unfortunately, most business owners face the complications of addressing their business in divorce including assessing its value and determining whether it is necessary or even possible to “buy out” their spouse’s share. Here we will try to answer some of the most common questions by small business owners in divorce. It is important to remember that a qualified Illinois divorce attorney is the best
Continue Reading Valuing Your Illinois Business During Divorce

Even under the best of circumstances, asset division is one of the most difficult and complex aspects of the Illinois divorce process. This is especially true when a couple has a high net worth and has money invested in complex assets that may be difficult to value. Sometimes, one spouse will take advantage of this and hide marital property in an effort to reduce their spousal maintenance or child support payments and to reduce the amount of marital property they have to split during the asset division process. This is unethical and illegal.
Fortunately, there are effective measures available for
Continue Reading What Can I Do If My Spouse Is Hiding Assets in Our Divorce?

Handling inheritance is often a contentious issue for divorcing couples in Illinois. Although the events that allow for an inheritance to occur can be tragic, the truth is that inheritances often provide much-needed financial security. A couple may have counted on receiving an inheritance during periods of their relationship when they got along and were planning for the future.
But once a couple begins talking about divorce, they may be unsure how an inheritance is handled. Does it belong to one spouse or both spouses? What if the funds from the inheritance were placed in a joint bank account
Continue Reading Am I Entitled to a Portion of My Spouse’s Inheritance in an Illinois Divorce?

For many couples, using mediation during their divorce saves them time, money, and stress. In traditional divorce court litigation, spouses must present their arguments to a judge and then rely on him or her to decide crucial things such as the allocation of parental responsibilities, parenting time, child support, and spousal support. In contrast, mediation allows spouses to directly negotiate the terms of their divorce agreement, resulting in an outcome that is far more likely to be mutually satisfying.
Although mediation has its advantages, it is not right for every couple. In this article, we will dispel
Continue Reading Four Myths about Divorce Mediation in Illinois

Two and a half years ago, Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a bill into law that changed the way marijuana is treated in Illinois. The Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act (ICRTA) decriminalized the use and possession of recreational marijuana and opened the door to private businesses selling it to citizens. Although marijuana remains illegal on the federal level, the ICRTA halted criminal punishment of marijuana users and even allowed Governor Pritzker to pardon thousands of previous marijuana convictions.
The ICRTA also included provisions that prevent marijuana use, by itself, to be considered as a factor when judges make decisions about
Continue Reading Can My Marijuana Use Affect My Legal Right to See My Child?

Married parents can claim their child as a dependent exemption on their joint tax return. After divorce, however, only one parent can claim a child as a dependent for tax purposes. Because the ability to claim dependent exemptions can make a major difference in a parent’s finances, being able to claim your child as an exemption is often as good as money itself. Understandably, the tax implications of divorce can be a topic of contention.
Include Child Tax Exemptions in Your Divorce Decree
In the midst of divorce negotiations, who gets to claim a child as a dependent exemption
Continue Reading Can I Claim My Child as a Tax Dependent After Divorce in Illinois?

The end of the summer holidays can be bittersweet. Children are torn between sadness that school is starting again and excitement to see their friends; parents are sorry to be spending less time with their children, but relieved to get back on a regimented schedule. For parents who are recently divorced or separated, navigating the back-to-school experience can be hectic.
Deciding who will buy school supplies, who will provide after-school childcare, and who will monitor homework and attend parent-teacher conferences are all things to be considered. Each family’s situation is different, but there are some steps you can take that
Continue Reading Three Back-to-School Schedule Tips for Divorced or Separated Parents

Whether due to a new job or wanting to be closer to friends or family members, divorced parents may want to move away for a number of reasons. For divorced parents, however, moving with kids may not be simple. They have to get permission from the court and the other parent to move out of state. If your child’s other parent wants to relocate and you disagree with the relocation, it is important to understand your rights and responsibilities. A skilled family law attorney can help you contest the relocation and assert your rights. 
Factors Courts Consider Before Letting a
Continue Reading Can I Stop My Ex From Moving Away if We Share Children?