Category Archives: Family Law

Illinois prenup laws, Illinois divorce lawyerWhen you make the decision to enter into a marriage, you, like those before you, believe that the union will last forever. You have visions of your happily ever after and holding the hands of your loved one well after your hair loses its color. However, for a significant portion of the population, life happens, and the plans change. Especially due to high divorce rates, more couples inquire about entering into a prenuptial agreement, also known as a prenup, before tying the knot. For most Illinois cases, this contract is enforceable. However, this is not true for all situations.

Illinois Uniform Premarital Agreement Act

After the engagement and before the wedding a discussion about what happens if things go sour is a good idea. Although no one likes to taint the joyous occasion with negativity, marriage is a binding legal union, and it is well-advised to create a plan of action for if the contract collapses. A prenuptial agreement, or premarital agreement, delegates when everyone is on agreeable terms what should happen to property, investments and other earnings when everyone is not-so-willing to negotiate. This agreement must be in writing before signing the marriage certificate and becomes valid only after the union legally begins. Most areas of marriage may be included, except child support and visitation rights. A few items often included in such an agreement are:

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Illinois paternity lawyer, Illinois paternity lawsIf you happen to stop to watch or listen to daytime talk shows, you may begin to question the validity of paternity tests. However, on the other hand, many people wonder whether or not some of those shows are staged, so perhaps we should not put much faith into the dramatic overtures seen when a father is, or is not, identified on television. On a serious note, a very real question that directly impacts the daily life and future of thousands of families across the United States depends on the reliability of paternity testing. Lives depend on them, but how reliable are the results?

How DNA Testing Works

DNA testing, also known as paternity testing, is intended to determine who the father is of a child. The practice gains a sample from both the potential father and the child through blood, cheek swab, umbilical cord, saliva, semen, hair, or another piece of tissue. The samples are then analyzed together to see how many commonalities are found within the two strands of DNA. The more closely two people are related, the more similar their genetic strands appear. A child receives half of their genetic code from each biological parent. Therefore the genetic code is a mixture of both. Now, paternity can be shown as early as eight weeks into the pregnancy through non-invasive blood testing of the mother. Also, if the father is uncooperative, testing may be done through the potential grandparents. This last method, however, may show parentage for any of the siblings in the family. Therefore, if the father has a brother, it does not conclusively say which brother matches more closely.

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Hinsdale family law attorneysIf you are involved in a disputed child custody or visitation case in Illinois, odds are there will be a Guardian ad Litem appointed for your child.

The Guardian ad Litem or "GAL" is a Court appointed attorney who will investigate the claims that you (or any other parent/interested party) make regarding the child's custody and visitation, as well as accusations of physical or mental abuse of your child by a parent or third-party.

Listed below are important facts to keep in mind when you speak to the Guardian ad Litem.

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyerFor centuries, parents, with other individuals in the community, chose marriage partners for their children. This methodology of selecting a spouse is called an arranged marriage. Although in the United States, marriage commonly occurs when two people fall in love on their volition, and they choose to marry, in other countries and cultures, an arranged marriage is the only way to go. Arranged marriage is not unheard of here either, however, and in the groups that still abide by this method, the divorce rate is significantly lower than average. No matter how the marriage began, if it falls apart, divorce is still an option.

Prevalence of Arranged Marriages

An arranged marriage is one set up by parents, community elders, matchmakers, and religious leaders. Those involved consider the two individuals and their personalities as well as their social class and the cultural impact of such a union. This type of union is not to be confused with a forced marriage. With this option, although the suggestion is made, the decision to enter the marriage must be made willingly by the two matched together. Cultures that practice this way of life include India, Pakistan, Japan, China, and Israel.

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Illinois child support lawyer, Illinois family lawyerIn the United States, there is a trend growing at an alarming rate. Failure to pay court-ordered child support is not something that is acceptable especially when lives depend on that income. Each year, approximately $24 billion dollars are successfully paid across the country. Compare that number to the over $100 billion that remains unpaid. About 25 million parents are not receiving any support, leaving 19% of those awarded support being paid. These numbers are troubling, and lawmakers across the country are cracking down on so-called “deadbeat parents.”

Illinois Consequences

If you reside in the state of Illinois or otherwise have your support payments set up to this state, you face serious trouble for not paying on time each month. The Non-Support Punishment Act enables the state, and occasionally also at a federal level, to utilize harsh penalties to force payment. These penalties include:

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