Blog Authors

Latest from Martoccio & Martoccio Blog

 People often work for the better part of their adult lives so they can look forward to retiring one day. Divorce can throw a shadow over your retirement prospects – after all, an important part of the divorce process is dividing marital assets. 
Retirement accounts, including government pensions, are generally considered marital assets. Even if you started working at your job before you got married, any contributions to a pension account – from you or the government – after the marriage began will be considered marital property. Pension accounts must be valued and then divided, which can present significant challenges
Continue Reading Can I Keep My Government Pension if We Get Divorced in Illinois? 

As couples choose to have children later and later in life, and some couples choose not to have children at all, many spouses opt for pet ownership instead. Indeed, pets can feel as though they are a member of the family, and pet parents are often understandably worried about what will happen to their pet if they get divorced. Families with children may also be concerned about who will keep the family pet. Fortunately, Illinois updated the relevant divorce laws in 2018 to allow pets to be treated in a more nuanced way than a car or savings account.
Continue Reading Who Keeps Our Dog if We Get Divorced in Illinois? 

Small businesses owners in Illinois face enormous challenges when trying to make their business successful. Many years and countless hours spent finding clients, fixing problems, and doing paperwork are no guarantee of achieving wealth or ease. The prospect of divorce can threaten everything an entrepreneur has created, including his or her long-term financial stability.
The process of valuing and dividing a business in divorce also poses unique challenges. Determining which valuation method to use, how to split the business or buy out a spouse, and what to do with a business after these changes occur often require help from a
Continue Reading How Are Small Businesses Divided in an Illinois Divorce? 

Couples in Illinois often still live together when one spouse files for divorce. Many reasons, including the financial impact of maintaining two households, compel them to continue living together while the divorce process is underway. However, divorces can be conflict-ridden, and living together may prove impossible. 
Spouses who find themselves in this situation but dislike the idea of leaving their children or fear the repercussions of leaving the home may wonder what to do. Can one spouse force the other to leave the home? Will leaving the home impact a court’s future decisions about parenting time or asset division?
Continue Reading Should I Move Out of My House Before the Divorce is Final? 

Originally instituted as a method by which gay and lesbian couples could get married in Illinois without federal approval, civil unions are now used by a wide variety of people for many reasons. Some couples are simply disinterested in the large ceremonies and expensive receptions that often accompany weddings, and some couples want to solidify their commitment to each other without affecting their federal tax filing status.
Although nobody enters into a civil union expecting that one day the relationship will fall apart, unfortunately, this does happen. Because civil unions are less common than marriages, partners may be left with
Continue Reading Can a Couple in a Civil Union Get Divorced in Illinois?

Illinois parentage law recognizes that relationships between people can be complicated and unpredictable. When there is a question regarding the parentage of a child who is born to unmarried parents, there is a procedure for establishing who is the father of the child.
Although the stereotypical notion of establishing paternity often comes in the form of a mother who needs to obtain child support, many times a man who believes a child is his son or daughter is eager to have a relationship with that child and be actively involved in his or her life. Legally establishing paternity can benefit
Continue Reading How Can I Prove I Am the Father of My Child?

Preparing for a wedding is a busy, thrilling, and nerve-wracking time. There are so many things to think about and so much romance in the air that considering a prenuptial agreement is often the last thing on the bride or groom’s mind. After all, nobody gets married believing that they will eventually get divorced.
Unfortunately, the statistics on divorce are clear. Many marriages do eventually come to an end, and many divorces are hostile and combative in nature. Although it may feel as though such a thing could never happen to you, spending just a few hours on a prenup
Continue Reading Should I Consider a Prenuptial Agreement Before My Illinois Wedding?

Also known as alimony, spousal maintenance is a series of payments made from one former spouse to the other during or following a divorce. The purpose of spousal maintenance is to help the receiving spouse become financially independent following a marriage in which their quality of life was dependent on the paying spouse’s income.
The amount and length of spousal maintenance depend on a few factors and this article briefly examines these factors. If you have questions about spousal maintenance, contact an experienced divorce attorney.
How Is the Amount of Spousal Maintenance Payments Determined?
The first factor that judges
Continue Reading How Much Alimony Will I Be Entitled to in My Illinois Divorce?

If you have already decided to get divorced, you are likely wondering how to move forward. Couples who mutually agree to get a divorce may wonder if they can negotiate everything addressed in a divorce decree without going to trial and fighting out the details in front of a judge.
Fortunately, there are two effective strategies for couples who wish to avoid the hostility, expense, and significant amount of time spent in a courtroom divorce trial: Mediation and collaborative divorce. Although these two methods are not the same, they share some similar strategies and can be great tools for couples
Continue Reading Are Mediation and Collaborative Divorce the Same in Illinois?

The division and distribution of marital property is often one of the most contentious areas of divorce, especially in a high net worth divorce. Spouses frequently disagree about the value of assets and to whom they belong, and sometimes will even attempt to hide income or other assets. If you know your spouse made a certain amount of income, but this amount seems to have suddenly dropped now that you have filed for divorce, they may be trying to hide their true income in an attempt to pay lower amounts of spousal support or child support.
Continue Reading What Can I Do If My Spouse Is Hiding Income in Our Illinois Divorce?

Divorce is complex enough when a client has a great relationship with their attorney. Unfortunately, someone may hire a divorce attorney who seems great, only to find out that the attorney is not meeting the client’s needs or expectations. Maybe the attorney seems totally unprepared for hearings, or never returns phone calls. If this sounds like you, you may be wondering: Can you change your attorney in the middle of the divorce process?
Simply put, yes – you can generally fire or hire an attorney at any time. However, there are advantages and disadvantages to firing an attorney. Consider your
Continue Reading Can I Change My Attorney During the Illinois Divorce Process?

Divorce can be emotionally taxing and some spouses may be tempted to take the quickest offer just to get the whole thing over with. Other spouses take the opposite approach, acting aggressively to try to get their entire agenda fulfilled in their divorce decree. But by trying to “win” at the divorce, these spouses may instead create a hostile and contentious situation that prevents achieving a settlement and prolongs the divorce process.
Both spouses need a divorce decree that allows ample parenting time and makes financial sense, now and in the future. Approaching divorce with goals in mind can help
Continue Reading Why Trying to "Win" Your Illinois Divorce May Be a Bad Idea

Parenting is always challenging, but parenting a disabled child can entail substantially more caregiving requirements. Generally, both parents are responsible for a child’s financial needs until the child reaches the age of 18. However, when an adult child has a disability, the child may not be able to work or support themselves. In this case, parents often are financially responsible for their child well into adulthood. For divorced parents, this means that child support payments may not necessarily stop once the child turns 18. If the disability is an “impairment that substantially limits major life activity,” Illinois may legally require
Continue Reading Do Illinois Parents Pay Child Support for a Disabled Adult Child?

All parents getting an Illinois divorce must create a parenting plan that is included in their final divorce decree. When parents cannot agree on a parenting plan, they must litigate their differences in court and a judge will ultimately make the decisions for them.
A parenting plan is a legally binding agreement that covers issues such as the allocation of parental responsibilities, a parenting time schedule, where the child will live, whether a parent can move if the child lives with them, and how parents will exchange important information like healthcare and grades. In Illinois, parenting plans must also
Continue Reading What Is the Right of First Refusal in Illinois?

Divorce is rarely pleasant or easy, but when a business is involved, the divorce process becomes significantly more complicated. Business owners put significant amounts of their time, energy, and money into starting their business and making it successful. Beyond the general frustration at the prospect of splitting the value of a business with a former spouse, business owners must confront the challenge of determining a business’s value, including all of its debts and assets.
This article gives an overview of how the value of a business is determined for divorce purposes in Illinois, but it is not intended as
Continue Reading How Is a Business’s Value Determined in an Illinois Divorce?

In the recent past, the Illinois legislature updated Illinois law to reflect the State’s commitment to considering a child’s wellbeing during divorce, child support, and custody proceedings. Few things are as important to a growing child as access to adequate healthcare. Parents may be unsure how a divorce will affect their child’s insurance coverage, or who will pay for healthcare-related expenses. In this blog, we will answer some common questions about how a child’s healthcare coverage and expenses are commonly handled by Illinois courts.
Who Provides Health Insurance?
Generally, if one parent has insurance through their workplace and
Continue Reading How Is a Child’s Healthcare Paid For After an Illinois Divorce?