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Parentage Not Presumed for Fathers in Same-Sex Divorce

 Posted on June 11, 2019 in Kane County family law attorney

Parentage Not Presumed for Fathers in Same-Sex DivorceThe same divorce laws apply to same-sex spouses in Illinois as they do to any other married couples. There is the same presumption of the equitable distribution of marital properties and allocation of parental responsibilities. The average same-sex divorce may be slightly different from the average heterosexual divorce because the recency of the same-sex marriage law makes it unlikely that they will be divorcing after a long-duration marriage. Divorcing same-sex spouses are more likely to have unique complications with establishing legal parentage of their children, which can impair one of the spouse’s parental rights.

Establishing Parenthood

The Illinois Parentage Act of 2015 defines four ways that someone is legally presumed to be the parent of a child if they did not give birth to the child:

Valuing and Dividing a Business in Divorce

 Posted on May 14, 2019 in Kane County family law attorney

Valuing and Dividing a Business in DivorceMarital property in a divorce includes anything that either spouse has bought or contributed marital assets to during their marriage. For business owners, this means that their business is likely included in the division of property, even if they started or purchased the business before their marriage. As with any property, you and your spouse can claim an equal share of the business. However, a business is different from other properties in how you will assess its value and divide it.

Dividing a Business

There are three ways that you can divide your business during a divorce:

  1. One of You Retains Ownership: If only one of you is involved in running the business, the most sensible option may be to give complete ownership to that person. However, the person who receives ownership will need to compensate the other spouse with marital properties of similar value. You are essentially buying out your spouse as an owner.

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How a Parenting Plan Can Combat Conflict

 Posted on April 08, 2019 in Kane County family law attorney

How a Parenting Plan Can Combat ConflictNo one can force you to like your co-parent after a divorce, but you need some civility between each other for the sake of your children. Co-parents with a high-conflict relationship struggle to communicate about their children’s needs. Open hostilities and silent tension will upset your children. Your parenting agreement can limit the number of contentious situations that you are placed in. High-conflict co-parents need structure and formal interaction that leaves little room for emotion. A parenting plan can create structure.

Communication

Co-parents need to communicate with each other about their children so there is some consistency in their parenting. You cannot expect your child to be your messenger and tell your co-parent everything he or she needs to know. Your problem is that conversations with your co-parent often escalate into arguments. Your parenting agreement can set communication guidelines for:

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The Financial Complexities of Gray Divorce

 Posted on March 11, 2019 in Kane County family law attorney

The Financial Complexities of Gray DivorcePeople 50 and older are the only age group in the U.S. for whom the divorce rate has increased in recent years. Divorce researchers use the term “gray divorce” to categorize older couples who divorce after decades of marriage. There are several theories for why a couple may divorce at this stage in their lives:

  • Empty nesters and retirees no longer have children or careers to distract them from their relationship;
  • The couple may have married because it was expected rather than because they were compatible;
  • A midlife crisis can make people anxious to create a more satisfying life while they can still enjoy it; and
  • People can change after decades of marriage.

Whatever the reason is for ending the marriage, gray divorce can be complicated for everyone involved.

Division of Property

Spouses who have been married for decades will have accumulated numerous marital properties that they must divide in the divorce. They are also more likely to have high-value assets that they were able to purchase after years of saving money. Retirement plans have unique importance during a gray divorce. Each spouse will soon be relying on his or her retirement benefits, which have had time to accrue great value. In most cases, either the whole retirement plan is marital property or the amount that it increased in value since the spouses were married. Spouses must determine how much of the retirement money that they want to protect and what they would give up in exchange.

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Four Ways to Save Time on Your Divorce

 Posted on February 10, 2019 in Kane County family law attorney

Four Ways to Save Time on Your DivorceTime is the variable that is most likely to drive up the cost of your divorce. Having extended negotiations and attending multiple court hearings will increase your legal and court costs. The advantage of creating a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement is that you have already decided how you will divide properties and whether one of you will pay spousal maintenance. If you are entering a divorce without an agreement, there are still ways that you can save time and cost on your divorce:

  1. Start Prepared: Identifying and valuing your marital properties is a time-consuming part of your divorce. Your divorce attorney can investigate this for you, but you can speed up the process by giving him or her a list of marital properties and documents related to their value. This saves your attorney from having to file requests for this information.

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Requesting Child Support as a Father

 Posted on January 08, 2019 in Child support

Requesting Child Support as a FatherA stereotypical parenting agreement in a divorce results in the children living with the mother and the father paying child support. A father who does not make his required child support payments may be labeled a deadbeat, and the mother may go to court to enforce the payments. However, divorced fathers sometimes do not do enough to pursue child support from the mother when the parenting roles are reversed. They may be following a societal bias about their parental role, even though the law does not have the same bias.

A Father’s Role

It is still a common family arrangement for the father to be the provider and the mother to be the caretaker, but there are more families that do not follow those gender roles than in previous decades. It may be more sensible for the father to be the primary caretaker if:

Making Your House Feel Like Home After Divorce

 Posted on December 18, 2018 in Kane County family law attorney

Making Your House Feel Like Home After DivorceAt least one of you will be moving into a new home after your divorce, and it is possible that both of you will be moving if you choose to sell your marital home. Settling into a new home can be stressful, especially when combined with adjusting to being single. Even if you get to keep your old home, it may feel noticeably emptier without your spouse. You will need time to adjust to your new living situation, but personalizing the appearance of your home can help you with the transition.

Decluttering

Moving is a good time to assess which items you no longer need after your divorce. Some items are impractical for you to keep as a single adult. You may want to purge yourself of other items because they remind you of your marriage. There is nothing wrong with getting rid of otherwise useful items because of your emotions towards them. Before throwing out or giving away an item, you should ask yourself:

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Preparing for Financial, Emotional Adjustments After Divorce

 Posted on November 13, 2018 in Kane County family law attorney

Making Financial, Emotional Adjustments After DivorceBefore starting your divorce negotiations, you should ask yourself what comes next for you after your divorce. Though you may not have specific answers, you do know that your life and your needs will be different than when you were married. Your divorce agreement should help you meet your financial and emotional needs, whether it is through the division of property, spousal maintenance, or the allocation of parental responsibilities.

Financial Needs

You will have a heavier financial burden after your divorce because you will be individually responsible for your expenses. Your individual income may be unable to afford your married lifestyle. You can adapt by budgeting your money and cutting back on your living expenses, but you should also try to maximize your individual income and assets. There are several ways that you can prepare yourself for this in your divorce agreement:

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Enforcing Child Support Payments from Your Co-Parent

 Posted on October 09, 2018 in Child support

Enforcing Child Support Payments from Your Co-ParentIllinois made its child support system more equitable when it started using an income shares model to determine payments. With the model, each parent pays a share of the total child-related expenses that is proportionate to their comparative incomes. Still, some parents do not pay their mandated child support, leaving the other parent with a disproportionate financial burden. As a parent, you have legal means of enforcing your child support agreement. A court or state agency can seize the money from your co-parent or punish him or her for not complying.

State Agencies

You can ask the Illinois Department of Child Support Services to enforce your child support agreement if the state processes your child support payments. The DCSS will investigate your claim to confirm that your co-parent is not making the required child support payments. The DCSS has several ways of enforcing child support orders, including:

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Four Reasons to Stay Off Social Media During Divorce

 Posted on September 10, 2018 in Kane County family law attorney

Four Reasons to Stay Off Social Media During DivorceSocial media is a potential pitfall for divorcees because your spouse can use the content you post against you in your case. Social media users often share information about themselves without considering who can see it and how others could interpret it. You can best protect yourself by not posting anything on your social media account during your divorce. There are several ways that remaining active on social media can hurt you in a divorce case:

  1. Your Content Reflects Your Character: Your behavior during your divorce can influence a court’s decision on the allocation of parental responsibilities and the division of property. People often post pictures of themselves on social media having fun or out with friends. Your spouse could portray a seemingly innocent post as evidence that you are irresponsible as a parent and budgeter of your finances. Defending yourself against these accusations distracts you from other work in your divorce.

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