Tag Archives: asset division

IL divorce lawyerMany couples end up dissolving their marriages on relatively good terms. In these cases, the divorce is often uncontested. An amicable divorce is one in which both spouses agree to the terms without contesting such matters as division of marital property, child support, child custody, visitation, and spousal support. There are many positives to an amicable divorce, including significant time savings. Amicable divorces are generally much less stressful than contested divorces. And, amicable divorces are usually much less expensive. After all, 40 percent of Americans do not have enough money in reserve to cover an unexpected $400 bill, and the average cost of divorce, per person, is $15,000. However appealing an amicable divorce sounds, it may not be a good idea to sign divorce papers without first talking to an attorney.

Why an Attorney Is Still Necessary

Shockingly, 40 percent of couples take a very large risk by not using a divorce attorney when they get divorced. Amicable divorces do not require an attorney to argue your case in front of a judge, but there may be reasons to work with an attorney regardless. It is true that you and your spouse can write up an agreement and submit it to the court for the court’s approval and a final divorce decree. Yet, some spouses end up regretting their decision to trust their partner with such openness. After all, the other spouse may have kept some aspects of their lives hidden from you. For example:

  • They may have hidden assets that you do not know about;
  • Some of the assets that ended up getting divided may not actually be marital property, such as inheritance or personal injury settlement money;
  • Their future living situation, work schedule, and lifestyle may not be as ideal as they lead you to think regarding parenting time;
  • The alimony decision that the two of you came up with may not be fair to one of the parties;
  • The child support that the paying parent provides may not be adequate for the new living expenses that the custodial parent is now faced with; and
  • Much more.

A Hinsdale Divorce Attorney Can Answer the Important Questions

Divorce should never be rushed because that is when mistakes are made that can haunt you for years to come. Let the experienced DuPage County divorce attorneys at the Law Offices of Martoccio & Martoccio thoroughly review your case before you take any further actions that could inadvertently harm your child or yourself. Call 630-920-8855 to schedule a free consultation today.

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IL family lawyerIt can be tempting for a spouse to monitor the movements of the other, especially during divorce or searching for suspected infidelity. Cell phones can easily be tracked without the other spouses’ knowledge, and GPS devices the size of a coin can be hidden in vehicles without being detected. Furthermore, accessing a spouse’s emails can show what they have been up to, not just where. However, tracking or spying on a spouse in such a manner is not necessarily legal in Illinois, and by doing so and getting caught, it can have a profoundly negative effect on your divorce be creating further distrust, anger, and feelings of betrayal. GPS tracking and digital spying will most likely result in a contested divorce, as the spied-upon spouse will feel they have less reason to compromise.

Electronic GPS Tracking Can Be Illegal in Illinois

Under 720 ILCS 5/21-2.5, it is a Class A misdemeanor to place a GPS device on a person or their car, without their consent, in order to track their location. However, it becomes more complicated when the vehicle is owned jointly in a marriage. While it may not be illegal, or at least a punishable offense, for one spouse to secretly track the other, it can certainly have a negative impact on divorce decisions like child custody if it reveals the poor character of a parent.

Tampering with Computers, Such as Reading Your Spouse’s Emails

Another way that spouses keep tabs on another during divorce is by secretly accessing the other’s phone or laptop to read emails. This is also unlawful in Illinois under 720 ILCS 5/17-51. While criminal charges may never be filed, reading the emails and private messages of your spouse can:

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IL family lawyerDivorce is usually a time of drastic changes. Everything from your normal breakfast routine to where you sleep at night goes out the window during divorce. For many couples, selling the home becomes a necessity to manage finances. As the two spouses split up and live in different locations, paying the mortgage on top of rent becomes unmanageable, particularly when the two parties have to pay separate utilities and a plethora of other expenses that used to be shared. In fact, 61 percent of divorced couples end up selling the home. However, not all soon-to-be divorced couples sell the home, and in some cases, this is the best decision if at all possible.

If You Have to Sell the Home

Finances or moving out of town are two of the most common reasons that divorced couples sell their home. Selling the home can provide the best way to split the value of the property during division of assets, can allow both parties financial footing to start off anew, and can minimize stressful costs by getting rid of an expensive mortgage. After all, if one party ends up owning the house, they may not even be able to cover the mortgage by themselves. If you are selling your home during divorce, make sure to follow the tips below:

  • Discuss the full plan with your spouse before taking any other actions, as well as the pros and cons of selling or staying;
  • Divide the costs of cleaning, maintenance, renovations, and any other repair work evenly or at least keep close track of the costs;
  • Choose a realtor together;
  • Keep dialogue open with your spouse during the sale;
  • Hire an attorney before the sale goes through; and
  • Divide the assets. Marital property in Illinois is divided equitably.

Choosing to Keep the Home

For parents who can afford to keep the home, the stability that brings to your children may outweigh any other positives that selling the home has to offer. Additionally, older divorces may benefit by holding onto a home that they own outright. After all, late-life divorces are much more common now than in the past. In 2014, Americans over the age of 50 were twice as likely to get divorced than 50-plus-year-old Americans in 1990. For divorcing couples that choose not to sell the home, they, along with their attorneys, need to figure out an equitable way to divide assets, since the home (usually) cannot continue to belong to both parties. And, if there is a mortgage left to pay, the spouses must reach a decision on who is responsible for paying what. In some cases, the spouse who no longer lives in the home may be responsible for paying part of the mortgage.

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IL divorce lawyerDivorce is a stressful time for everyone involved. Emotions and tensions rise anytime anyone delves into the often uncomfortable, intimate details of their own personal life and finances, let alone a legal team. Additionally, the stakes of divorce are high, which increases defensive responses. When someone becomes defensive, they begin to behave in such a way as to better their potential outcome. In divorce, this often leads to concealed information, purposeful misrepresentation of a situation, and uncooperative third parties.

Find out how a subpoena can help uncover the truth you know is out there:

What Is a Subpoena?

In Latin, subpoena means, “under penalty.” In legal terms, a subpoena is a legal document that forces the participation of either your spouse or a neutral third party with evidence regarding your divorce. This document is issued only by an attorney or a clerk of court and must be served to all involved parties. If a party opts to ignore the order, they risk being held in contempt, which is punishable by civil fines and criminal charges.

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DuPage County property division lawyer

Financial infidelity can be stressful in any relationship, but it can become even more stressful in a divorce. Here are a few signs that your spouse may be hiding assets from you:

  1. You find unusual statements in the mail. This one can be the most obvious. If you have been getting account statements in the mail from banks or credit card companies that you are not familiar with, they could indicate that your spouse has an account with them that he or she has not told you about.
  2. Your spouse is controlling your joint bank accounts. This one could be harder to detect if your spouse is usually the one who takes care of the finances. If your spouse all of a sudden begins being secretive or controlling of your joint checking or savings accounts, it could be a sign that he or she is trying to conceal certain financial actions.
  3. Your spouse has made unusually large purchases. You are probably aware of your spouse’s spending habits. If they are making unusual purchases or very expensive purchases, like cars or jewelry, without your knowledge, they could be attempting to underreport the costs of those items.
  4. Your spouse has opened a custodial account. While this may seem like a responsible and preemptive thing for your spouse to do, it may have happened for the wrong reasons. Opening a custodial account under your child’s name and social security number can allow them to put away money while saying it is for your child.

A Hinsdale, IL Asset Division Lawyer Can Help

When you get a divorce, you will eventually have to divide community assets between you and your spouse. If your spouse has an array of assets that you are on aware of, he or she could be getting much more than his or her fair share. If you have reason to believe that your spouse is attempting to hide assets from you, you need help from a knowledgeable and aggressive DuPage County community property attorney.

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