Tag Archives: Hinsdale divorce attorney

IL divorce lawyerBusinesses in Illinois divorces are typically considered marital property. Even if only one spouse operated the business, it is generally assumed that the profits from the business contributed to the needs of the couple, the children, and the household. Due to this, when one or both spouses operated a business during the marriage, it is subject to the property division rules of the state. Dividing a business is one of the most complicated aspects of any divorce and typically, there are three ways in which it can be done.

Give Your Spouse Something of Equal Value

You can give your spouse something that is equal to their portion of the business in one of two ways. If you operate the business and want to continue doing so after the divorce, you can simply buy your spouse out. In this method, the value of the business is divided and you will have to pay your spouse their equal share. In some cases, you may not have to buy out your spouse, but you may allow them to keep more assets during property division hearings. For example, if you want to keep the business and your spouse wants to keep the family home that is approximately the same value, you can forfeit your rights to the home and retain control of your business.

Sell the Business

If you do not wish to continue running the business after divorce, selling it might be a good option. In this instance, the business is simply sold and you and your spouse will divide the proceeds fairly. This is not always a good option, as many people do not want to lose the hard work they have put into a business to simply sell it. However, if neither spouse wants it, or you both co-owned and operated the business and you will not be able to continue doing so once the divorce is final, this may be the only way to do it.

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IL divorce lawyerGoing through a divorce is difficult enough, and no one wants the process to drag on for a long time. It is for this reason that so many people choose alternative dispute resolutions rather than going to trial, which undoubtedly takes the longest amount of time. Alternative dispute resolutions include collaborative divorce and mediation, two methods of divorce that are often quicker than litigated divorces, but that are also largely misunderstood. So, if you are going through a divorce, what is the fastest way to do it?

Timeline for a Litigated Divorce

Going to trial will generally take the longest when going through divorce, even though judges typically try to get the parties to agree on a settlement before going to trial. Family courts generally have heavy caseloads and they simply do not have time to take every case to trial. Judges may even provide recommendations that can help the two parties come to a settlement before trial. If a case does go to trial, the parties involved can expect it to take anywhere between 12 and 24 months, and perhaps even longer if there are very contentious issues.

Timeline for a Collaborative Divorce

The length of time a collaborative divorce takes really depends on how much the two spouses fight about the different terms of the divorce, such as child custody and property division. It is true that just like with any other method of divorce, you and your spouse will not agree on everything in a collaborative divorce. However, conflict in a collaborative divorce is typically less than in a litigated divorce.

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IL divorce lawyerDuring a divorce, any retirement account either spouse holds is subject to property division proceedings. These funds are some of the most difficult to divide and the process can sometimes be lengthy. These funds also require a court order that is separate from the divorce settlement agreement. To ensure that these assets are divided properly, individuals must work with a family lawyer that is familiar with how these assets are divided, and that can help you navigate through the process.

Determining How Many of the Funds to Divide

Only marital property, which is property that was acquired by the couple during the marriage, is divided during a divorce. This concept can become complex when dividing retirement funds because in many instances, a person has acquired some of their funds prior to the marriage, but continued to build the retirement fund after they were married. As such, a portion of those funds are considered separate property and the remaining funds are considered marital property. The first step then, when dividing retirement funds, is to determine how much of the account is considered marital property.

Qualified Domestic Relations Orders

All divisions of retirement funds require a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). This lengthy document will detail how much of the retirement fund each spouse is entitled to receive after the divorce, as well as a number of other details. To begin the process, it is essential to work with a divorce lawyer that can contact the administrator of the plan. There are a number of specific steps that must be taken when dividing these funds, and your lawyer and the plan administrator will work together to ensure those steps are followed properly. The administrator must also approve the QDRO before it is submitted. The funds cannot be transferred until the administrator has approved the QDRO.

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IL divorce lawyerTherapists are often a big part of the divorce process, particularly in child custody hearings. The couple seeking a divorce often have to attend therapy sessions if there are children involved, in the hope that the two may reconcile and prevent the children from going through the stressful divorce process. The children involved also often attend their own therapy sessions to help them deal with the fact that their parents are breaking up and to preserve their mental health throughout the process. Although therapists are very helpful in the divorce process, there are two tips to remember when using them during your divorce.

Therapists Should Not Testify in Court

If your case goes to trial, your attorney will call many people to testify on your behalf. However, your attorney will also likely understand that therapists should not be called as a witness. Many therapists do not want to testify in court due to the confidential nature of the relationships they develop with their patients. If they are subpoenaed though, they may have to disclose the information they learned from their patient. The only exception to this is the guardian ad litem (GAL) that will work as your child’s representative. Under Illinois law, these individuals are not allowed to testify about anything the child has told them.

Additionally, a judge will likely not give much weight to a therapist’s testimony. The relationship between a therapist and their patients is often very personal and the two usually form a close bond. Judges know this and so, if one testifies on your behalf, the judge will understand that the therapist likely has a bias that will affect their testimony.

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Il divorce lawyerAt some point during the divorce process, your spouse’s attorney may send you a notice asking you to appear at a deposition. A deposition is part of the discovery phase of a trial and it allows each side to obtain important information about a case. Along with your attorney and your spouse’s, a court reporter will attend your deposition and record everything that is said. If your divorce involves child custody matters, a Guardian Ad Litem may also attend.

Depositions are often very intimidating, particularly if you have never attended one before. Proper preparation can help you overcome any nervousness you may feel, and ensure you do not hurt your case during the preparation. Below are some tips to help ensure you are properly prepared for your deposition.

Listen to the Full Questions Being Asked

Many people are used to interrupting each other, and being interrupted. It is crucial that you do not do this during the deposition. There is a chance that you do not know the question your spouse’s attorney is going to ask, and you could provide information that is useful to them, but harmful to your case. Listening to the full question also gives you a chance to pause and really form your full answer in a way that will also not hurt your case.

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