Author Archives: John Martoccio

b2ap3_thumbnail_dupage-county-divorce-lawyer.jpgDivorce in DuPage County, IL can become a heated and competitive endeavor that sometimes results in spouses trying to hide assets from each other. From hiding cash in a secret place to hiding cryptocurrency in an offshore bank account, it can be difficult to find and prove that hidden marital assets really exist and deserve to be divided as part of the marital estate. 

Hiding property is an unfair and unethical behavior that does not just affect the division of marital property - it can also affect child support payments and spousal maintenance payments by making a business owner’s revenue or a business’s value appear far less than it really is. Unfortunately for the other spouse, a small business offers the business owner plenty of surreptitious opportunities to hide away money before and during a divorce because there are so many ways assets can be concealed. If you are getting divorced and are worried your spouse might try to hide marital assets, contact an Illinois divorce attorney with experience in this matter right away. 

Common Ways Business Owners Hide Assets

Even small businesses can bring in substantial profits. While a business owner may be willing to share these profits during a marriage, he or she may feel perfectly justified in concealing them during divorce. Some common ways assets may be concealed include: 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_hinsdale-family-law-attorney_20220517-214621_1.jpgWhen parents of underage children get divorced in Illinois, they must create a parenting plan as part of their divorce decree. Parents are encouraged to work together to create this parenting plan without the help of a judge and may be ordered to attend mediation if necessary in order to do so. Although working together with your ex may not be easy, both parents are far more likely to be satisfied with the terms of their parenting agreement when they create it themselves. 

Parenting agreements contain many different parts, including when children will be with each parent, where holidays will be spent, and how parents will transfer children between households. But there are less well-known parts of a parenting agreement that can be very beneficial to children and parents alike. One of these is known as “the right of first refusal.” 

How Does the Right of First Refusal Benefit Parents? 

The right of first refusal is a term describing the idea that when a parent needs to leave their children with a substitute childcare provider for a “significant period of time,” that parent is required to first approach the other parent to see if he or she is available to care for the children. If the other parent is not available, he or she can refuse - hence the term “right of first refusal” - and the parent who needs childcare may then go on to seek it elsewhere. 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_hinsdale-divorce-attorney_20220513-133824_1.jpgWhen they are written well, prenuptial agreements are legally binding contracts that specify how a couple’s finances, at least in part, will be handled in a divorce. While most people have signed arbitration clauses in contracts like user agreements (often included in the fine print that nobody reads), those same people may be surprised to learn that arbitration agreements can also be included in an Illinois prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. 

Arbitration can be beneficial for many reasons, most of which are similar to the purpose of the pre- or postnuptial agreement itself: Avoiding protracted courtroom hostilities and ensuring parties can reach a resolution on important financial issues in the event of a divorce. If you are considering a prenup, continue reading to learn more about how an arbitration clause may benefit you. 

What is Arbitration and How is it Different from Mediation? 

While arbitration and mediation have some things in common, they are not the same. Arbitration is a process through which facts that are under dispute are investigated and judgment is rendered by a neutral third-party arbitrator. The arbitrator has the power to decide the outcome and his or her judgment is legally binding. Divorcing spouses involved in arbitration present evidence and testimony under oath, with very little room for emotional venting or creative problem-solving. 

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Couples deciding to get divorced in Illinois have generally thought through the impact that separation will have on their own lives. But it is also important to carefully consider how divorce will impact your children, who do not have the maturity to understand why parents separate and what these changes mean. While all divorcing parents must create a parenting agreement that describes parental responsibilities and parenting time, attention must also be given to helping children make the major adjustment to visiting parents in different homes. Here are a few tips that can help. 

Treat Your Co-Parent With Respect 

You may resent your ex and even hate them, but this is not your children’s fault and it should not be their burden to bear. Parents who cannot respect each other in front of their children leave the children feeling guilty, confused, and sad. Even when it is hard, treat your co-parent with respect and avoid badmouthing them to other adults when your children are present. 

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Some Illinois couples get divorced because of financial disagreements; other couples get divorced because of differences in how they want to raise their children. Still more couples get divorced because of abuse, adultery, or neglect. These issues can make pursuing a divorce a fairly straightforward, if difficult, decision to make. 

However, some people find they absolutely cannot stand their spouse - but for reasons they might feel embarrassed or nervous to share with friends and family. If the way your spouse eats, blows their nose, breathes, fidgets, or snores in their sleep makes you want to tear your marriage certificate in half, you may have a condition known as misophonia. 

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