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Category Archives: Family Law

IL divorce lawyerWhen getting a divorce, many couples think it is going to involve a lengthy and bitter courtroom battle. However, this is often not the case. Many couples choose to settle their divorce through mediation. Mediation is a method of alternative dispute resolution in which the two spouses meet with a neutral third-party, the mediator. During these meetings, the mediator attempts to bring the couple to a mutual agreement on all terms of the divorce. The process requires compromise on the part of each spouse, but there are many advantages to the process, which are listed below.

Mediation Is Faster

When going through litigation to get a divorce, the couple is at the mercy of the court’s schedule. That, along with the fact that trials are often lengthy, makes litigated divorces take much longer than those that are settled during mediation. While a litigated divorce may take several months to a year to settle, mediation can involve just a few sessions that take place over the course of several weeks.

Mediation Is Less Expensive

Generally speaking, mediation is cheaper than going through litigation for divorce. Mediation does not involve fees such as court costs and the fact that it is a faster process than going to trial typically means that mediation is cheaper than going to court.

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IL divorce lawyerThere are many complicated legal issues in any divorce that involves children. While parents may typically first think of child custody, there is also the issue of child support. Divorce is often expensive enough, but when one spouse learns that they will keep paying for the divorce through child support for years after, sometimes they take drastic steps to avoid the expense. Some may even quit their job. So, what can you do when a spouse stops working in an effort to avoid paying child support?

Obtaining a Child Support Order from the Courts

Under Illinois law, all parents are required to financially support their children while they are still minors. The only exception to this is that parents must also support a child 19 years of age if they are still in high school. Parents are obligated to provide this financial support regardless of whether they are married to the other parent or not.

When parents are divorced, this financial responsibility is typically met through child support. The non-custodial parent will make payments to the custodial parent to help with the daily expenses for the child, as well as their medical and educational costs.

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IL divorce lawyerThere are many different reasons people file for divorce. Whatever the reasoning is for yours, it is important to avoid certain mistakes that could jeopardize your emotional well-being or even your legal rights. Although the divorce process is often harrowing for those involved, below are the five biggest mistakes you want to avoid when going through yours.

Using Children as Bargaining Chips

You and your spouse may wish to come to an agreement about the terms of the divorce, whether you do it on your own or with the help of an attorney or mediator. No matter how this agreement is reached, it is important that you never use the kids as bargaining chips. For example, promising your spouse more parenting time with the children in exchange for additional property or alimony should never be done. It will only make the children feel devalued and will make the process so much more difficult for them. Although there will likely be negotiating in your divorce, your kids should never be in the middle of it.

Not Getting Agreements in Writing

It is always better for the entire family if the two spouses can come to an amicable agreement on the terms of their divorce. However, do not settle for simply orally agreeing to the terms. There is a chance that could backfire and that your spouse will one day go back on their word. Always get agreements in writing and create a legal contract that can be taken to a judge in case your spouse decides one day to no longer play by the rules you both set out.

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IL divorce lawyerIt is natural to think that when getting a divorce, you should be able to point out any fault your spouse may have had in the breakdown of the marriage. This is particularly true if your spouse engaged in hurtful behavior, such as having an affair or domestic abuse. Many spouses are surprised to learn that Illinois is a no-fault divorce state, which means there are no grounds for divorce. However, that does not mean that if you or your spouse is at fault for the divorce, it will not have an effect on the proceedings.

Irreconcilable Differences and No-Fault Divorces

In Illinois, a person only has to state that they and their spouse have irreconcilable differences to get a divorce. This means that there has been a breakdown of the relationship so severe that there is no chance of reconciliation. One person does not have to prove fault and the two spouses do not have to agree on the divorce. If one person files, the divorce will proceed.

How No-Fault Divorces Benefit Spouses

People sometimes find it frustrating that they cannot file for divorce based on their spouse’s bad behavior. After all, if a spouse cheated, the other spouse should be able to use this against them in court. However, there is very sound reasoning for Illinois moving to no-fault divorces.

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Il divorce lawyerWhen imagining going through a divorce, many people imagine a long and drawn-out courtroom battle. Although many couples resolve their issues during mediation, it is true that some divorce cases end up in trial, where a judge will make a decision on all the terms of the divorce. By the time a divorce case makes it to trial, there is often already a lot of animosity between the couple. Below are a few tips that can help prevent that from happening, and ensure your divorce trial goes as smoothly, and as quickly, as possible.

Communicate with Your Spouse

Even if your divorce does not involve children and you do not plan on seeing your spouse after the divorce is finalized, it is important to remain civil and communicate openly with your spouse. Fighting and arguments do not make the divorce process any easier for you or your spouse, and a judge is likely to get tired of it, too.

Provide All Documents Pertaining to Assets

During the discovery phase of the trial, each side will provide the other party with documents pertaining to assets and property they own and that are considered marital property. It is important to make sure that you provide all of these, and that you double and triple check you have provided everything. Even an honest mistake could look like you are trying to hide assets and a judge will not look kindly upon it.

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