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When a divorce is finalized, the decisions that are made are intended to be permanent. However, there may be some cases when a divorce decree may be modified, especially if it contains provisions that affect the parties’ ongoing financial situation or their relationships with their children. When addressing post-decree matters, divorced spouses should be sure to understand the types of changes that can be made and the circumstances that may warrant a modification.
Terms of a Divorce Decree That May Be Modified
After a couple’s marriage has been legally dissolved, an ex-spouse usually will not be able to request
Continue Reading What Types of Modifications Can I Make to My Divorce Decree?

If you are going through a divorce, you may be concerned about your ability to provide for yourself financially once your marriage has been legally dissolved. If you have relied on your spouse during the marriage to earn the majority of the income needed to meet your family’s needs, you may be able to receive financial support (known as spousal maintenance) following your divorce. On the other hand, if you earn more than your spouse, you may be concerned about your ability to cover your own expenses if you are also required to pay spousal support. By understanding how
Continue Reading How Is Spousal Support Calculated in an Illinois Divorce?

There are many reasons why couples who are planning to get married may wish to enter into a prenuptial agreement. A “prenup” can protect the ownership of assets that each party will be bringing into the marriage, ensuring that a person will continue to own certain assets if they end up getting a divorce. This can be especially beneficial for business owners, people with large incomes or family wealth, or those who have children from a previous relationship. However, spouses will need to meet certain requirements to ensure that their prenup will be valid. If an agreement is
Continue Reading How Can I Make Sure My Prenuptial Agreement Will Be Enforceable?

If you and your spouse have not been happy for a long time, getting a divorce may be able to give you the relief you need. However, getting a divorce is not a walk in the park. Resolving matters like the division of marital property can be complicated, and if your spouse is reluctant to provide you information about his or her finances, you may need to take advantage of the discovery process to get the information you need to make well-informed decisions.
What Is the Discovery Process?
The discovery process allows divorcing couples to gather important information and documents,
Continue Reading What Should I Expect During the Discovery Process in an Illinois Divorce?

During the Illinois divorce process, parents have an important responsibility to fill out a “Parenting Plan” document which states the details of parenting time and the allocation of parental responsibilities between the two parties. Parents may cooperate in the creation of a single parenting plan, or each parent may feel the need to draw up their own plan during the divorce case. With either approach, once the divorce is finalized and a plan is approved by the judge, it becomes legally binding. However, if your circumstances change after the divorce, you may be able to modify the parenting plan.
Continue Reading Can I Change My Parenting Plan After My Divorce Has Been Finalized?

If you are getting a divorce from your spouse, you may have ill feelings toward that person. Your anger and resentment may be so intense that you want to bad-mouth your ex-spouse every chance you get. However, doing so will likely only serve to perpetuate a hostile situation. It can also be damaging to your children, and it can even affect the outcome of the allocation of parenting time and parental responsibilities.
The Downsides of Bad-Mouthing Your Former Spouse
Speaking poorly about your former spouse can be harmful to both you and your kids. Keep in mind that your
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Obtaining guardianship over an adult can be a sensitive topic in many situations. When you ask a court for guardianship over a person, you are essentially asking them to grant you decision-making authority over important aspects of that person’s life. Sometimes, guardianship authority will be limited to certain purposes, such as managing a person’s financial affairs. However, other times, guardianship authority will include decision-making power in nearly all areas, especially when an individual is incapacitated to the point where they are not able to make decisions about their own affairs.
Common Situations that Warrant Guardianship
There are various reasons why
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In Illinois, parents are legally required to provide financial support for their children until they turn 18 or graduate from high school, whichever comes later. When parents are no longer in a romantic relationship, even the smallest of child support issues can lead to major conflict. There are many reasons why a parent may be behind on child support payments, but when they miss payments purposefully, there are certain things the other parent can do to try to recover the missing amount.
Notification of Delinquency
One option when the other parent is not paying support is to notify the Illinois
Continue Reading What Happens When Child Support Becomes Past Due in Illinois?

In today’s world, there is no such thing as an “average” family. Years ago, the traditional mother, father, and baby set-up was the norm, but nowadays, things are much different. According to the 2018 American Community Survey conducted by the Census Bureau, more than 6 million people lived in a household with a child who is not biologically related to them, including in a stepfamily. One reason for this is that many people who get divorced end up getting remarried, which often creates blended families, bringing children from prior marriages together in one household.
One question that may go through
Continue Reading Is it Possible to Adopt My Stepchild in Illinois?

If one were to ask, say, 10 married couples if they have ever hidden any type of financial information from each other, how many do you think would say that they have? Chances are, there would be a good number of them that answer, “yes.” According to a new survey from CreditCards.com, around 40 percent of respondents of all ages who are currently in serious relationships admitted that they were actively hiding a credit card, checking or savings account from their partner. Financial infidelity is common in marriages, but it can come back to haunt the guilty party during their
Continue Reading How Can My Spouse’s Financial Infidelity Affect Our Divorce?

One of the first questions most people have when they find themselves beginning to look into the possibility of divorce is how much the divorce process will cost. One of the well-known facts about divorce is that it is not cheap. According to a recent article in USA Today, the average cost of a divorce ranges from $8,400 to $17,500, when all factors are accounted for, so clearly, there is no one price tag that you can put on every divorce. The actual final cost of your divorce will end up being based on a variety of factors, with one
Continue Reading What Factors Can Affect the Cost of My Illinois Divorce?

A “gray divorce” is a term used when referring to a couple that gets divorced later in life, typically when they are over the age of 50. Perhaps they were waiting until their children were grown and out of the house, or an extramarital affair caused the split. Regardless of the reasons for the marriage ending, these older spouses will have to make some important decisions regarding their divorce settlement in order to move forward into the next chapter of their lives. One of the major issues with a “gray divorce” is that there can be more assets, and
Continue Reading What Are the Most Common Concerns in a “Gray Divorce”?

The end of a marriage can occur for many reasons, including infidelity, abuse, addiction and financial problems. But sometimes, spouses may put off filing for divorce, especially if they have children. Parents often worry about the emotional impact their split can have on their kids in the immediate aftermath of a divorce as well as in the future. However, studies have shown that children can be more traumatized when parents who have a toxic relationship stay together. Constant exposure to arguments is not healthy and may prevent children from having positive attitudes or relationships themselves. Fortunately, there are ways
Continue Reading Tips for Helping Children Cope After an Illinois Divorce

When a couple with children gets divorced, they must make several decisions regarding the children’s care and upbringing going forward. In most cases, both parents will be awarded a designated amount of parenting time (visitation) depending on the allocation of parental responsibilities (child custody) between them. A “right of first refusal” is a subject which arises when a parent intends to leave his or her child with a caregiver for a portion of his or her normal parenting time; that parent must first ask the child’s other parent if he or she can watch the child instead. Parents may
Continue Reading What Does the “Right of First Refusal” Mean in Illinois Divorces?

When a couple is married and they have a baby, it is presumed that the man is the legal father of the child. However, when two people are not married, paternity (parentage) has to be legally established before the father is eligible for specific parental rights, and before the child is entitled to certain benefits. Studies have shown that children thrive most when they have a relationship with both of their parents, so confirming parentage is important for everyone’s best interests and well-being of all parties. Establishing parentage for children born out of wedlock can also help provide a basis
Continue Reading The Benefits of Establishing Paternity for the Father and the Child

It can sometimes take a long time for a couple to come to the realization that their marriage should end. Regardless of the reasons for the relationship breakdown, sometimes it is for the best. The legal process of ending a matrimonial union involves many steps and decisions regarding various issues. Divorce laws vary by state, but in Illinois, the division of property follows the equitable distribution method. This means that marital property and assets are divided in a fair way, but not necessarily 50/50. Any property that is acquired during the marriage is subject to division. However, if your ex-spouse
Continue Reading Can I Modify the Division of Property After My Illinois Divorce?