233 W. Wilson Street, Batavia, IL, 60510

divorce, financial, Illinois family lawyerWhen you are getting divorced, there are a myriad of things to think about. Finances, of course, are one of them. When you are preparing for divorce, making sure that all your financial affairs are in order will not only to help the process itself go more smoothly, but can also help foster the beginning of your newly-single life. Securing your financial future while you are still married can help to build your confidence as you negotiate other (sometimes more emotionally-draining) aspects of divorce, such as the family home or childcare. You can also rest assured if your finances are under control that, even if you were not the primary breadwinner in the family, you will still be financially stable after dissolution.

There are several things that you can do to help ease the financial transition of divorce. The first is to make a budget. This may seem elementary, but no matter what, the first step toward financial independence is to make sure that your expenses are balanced with your income. Knowing where your money is going is essential—it may be easier to think of it as a spending plan instead of a budget. Having an emergency fund will likely be a good idea as you just get on your feet toward financial independence as well. Ideally, this emergency fund should be enough to cover three to six months of your expenses.

Another important step is to review (and most likely change) the beneficiary on your life insurance or retirement accounts. If you shared these with your ex-spouse, forgetting to change the name on the actual account can result in serious complications later. Be sure, however, that your divorce agreement will allow you to make such changes, as life insurance and retirement accounts may be used to balance the division of marital assets.

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Posted by on in Illinois divorce lawyer

divorce, decree, agreement, Illinois divorce attorneyWhen you are dissolving your marriage, it is not official until the court issues a divorce decree. A divorce decree legally separates you from your spouse and lays the outline for what will happen with your shared assets and childcare plans, if applicable. A divorce decree is different than a divorce agreement, as a divorce agreement outlines the expectations and duties of each party after the divorce.

While some states mandate that a couple must wait for a specified number of days between filing for divorce and signing the agreement, Illinois is a bit different. In Illinois, a couple must be able to prove that they have been living separately (this can be in a shared residence) for a minimum of six months before a divorce decree will be granted on the grounds of irreconcilable differences. Other divorce grounds may not apply such a separation period.

Just because it has all been agreed upon and settled, however, does not mean that both parties will automatically honor it. For some couples, especially if the divorce was high-conflict, it can be just as difficult to enforce the agreed-upon divorce decree or agreement as it was to dissolve the marriage. In some cases, one party to the divorce will not follow through with his or her end of the deal, or will try to alter the divorce agreement after it has been signed. A divorce agreement cannot be changed without the consent of both parties—it is legally enforceable.

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affair, infidelity, Illinois Family LawyerWhile affairs are becoming less cited as the number one cause of divorce, one partner’s infidelity in a marriage is still very much a factor that can lead to the dissolution of a marriage. Because of the high emotional stakes involved with an extramarital relationship, affairs tend to create more excitement or stress during a divorce than other reasons for separation, according to Psychology Today. Yet, the vast majority of relationships in which one partner was unfaithful do not end solely because of the affair—the relationship was not healthy or stable to begin with. There are plenty of examples in which an affair was the catalyst to end a struggling marriage; but in nearly all healthy marriages in which one partner makes a serious mistake and has an affair, the couple is able to work through the issue.

So why do people have affairs? And what can one partner do in an effort to avoid being put in that situation?

A spouse typically has an affair because he or she is feeling isolated or lonely in the relationship. Affairs are even more common if one or both partners have given up on the possibility that the marriage can be saved, indicated by an unwillingness to work on problems or a refusal to try to change a problematic behavior. They are especially common in sexless marriages, or when one partner does not do a good enough job of making the other feel wanted or desired.

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child custody, guardianship, Kane County Family Law AttorneyWith so many complex laws, financial burdens, and emotional hurdles, divorce is never an easy process. While it may be hard enough when two people end their marriage, the breakup of a family with children can be even more arduous. In particular,'child custody and child support agreements involve a number of intricate laws. What happens, however, when neither parent can provide for the child?

Every divorce case is unique; therefore, it is helpful to seek the advice and help of a legal professional. Family members may seek guardianship or custody'of a child because they feel neither biological parent can look after the child's best interests. In these cases, a qualified attorney can explain how a family member may be able to legally pursue guardianship or custody.

The Illinois court system determines custody and guardianship based on the children's best interests. Most cases result in at least one biological parent retaining custody of the children, and often, both parents will share custody. If neither parent is willing or able to properly care for children, another family member or friend may file for guardianship of the children. Under Illinois law, filing for guardianship is much easier and available in more situations than filing for custody.

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Halloween divorced parents, Kane County family law attorneySummer is over and school has started. As the leaves begin to fall, the evidence is clear. The holiday season is right around the corner. Many post-divorce families struggle with major holidays, having to juggle custody arrangements, making sure the kids get to visit the requisite family members for an 'appropriate' amount of time, and trying to maintain traditions in a changing situation. A relatively minor holiday to most families, this Halloween may be the perfect opportunity to try something a bit different and get this year's holiday season off to cooperative and enjoyable start.

Nobody has to convince the kids to get excited about Halloween. Young girls start deciding in September whether to dress as Elsa or Anna from Frozen. Boys consider which Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle will be the most fun. Meanwhile, mom and dad are left to figure out who the kids are supposed to be with this year, which parent lives in the safest neighborhood for trick-or-treating, and which parent may miss out on the kids' fun night. One'About.com single parent expert'suggests that Halloween could be a prime opportunity for ex-spouses to both get involved and offers several reasons to do so.

Light-Hearted Fun

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