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Recent Blog Posts

Will I Lose My Business in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on April 11, 2024 in Asset Division

Wheaton, IL asset division lawyerOne of the painful realities of the divorce process is that you lose not just a spouse but can also lose financial assets. Asset division, which is the area of divorce law that deals with dividing a couple’s assets, is very complex and should be handled by a skilled divorce attorney.

The general rule under Illinois law is that any property or asset that was acquired by either spouse during the marriage should be equitably split with the other spouse upon divorce. There are exceptions to this, such as:

  • Inheritance

  • Gifts

  • Property acquired by using pre-marital assets as collateral

If you have a business, it may count as marital property depending on certain factors.

Is My Spouse Entitled to My Business?

There are a few cases in which your spouse may be entitled to part of your business. For example:

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Should I Establish Paternity in Illinois?

 Posted on April 03, 2024 in Family Law

DuPage County, IL paternity lawyerIf you are an unmarried father in Illinois, you likely have questions and concerns about your legal rights and those of your child. Understanding your rights as a father, or your paternity rights, can be especially important if the parents’ relationship is strained and the mother is reluctant to involve the father in the child’s life.

Contacting an experienced family lawyer in Illinois who can help you understand paternity laws is the best first step to take. The attorney will discuss your legal options with you, such as making sure your relationship with your child is recognized in the eyes of the law. This is called “establishing paternity.”

Why Should Someone Establish Paternity?

A new father might consider establishing paternity to secure his legal rights, such as child custody and parenting time. But paternity also grants certain rights to the child, including:

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What Can I Do if My Spouse Has Pitted My Child Against Me in Illinois?

 Posted on March 20, 2024 in Child Custody

IL custody lawyerWhen thinking about domestic abuse, physical violence often comes to mind. Of course, being physically harmed within your family is a horrible thing to experience. But something people discuss less often and can still be detrimental is emotional abuse. When one parent pits their child against the other parent, manipulating the child into having less of a relationship with them, this is a form of emotional abuse otherwise known as parental alienation, and it is a big problem for parents going through a divorce. If you believe your spouse is doing this to your children as an attempt to manipulate your child custody arrangement, speak with an experienced DuPage County, IL divorce lawyer to see what you can do about it.

What Is Involved in Parental Alienation?

When a parent manipulates their child against the other parent, it is a form of psychological and emotional abuse that can be extremely damaging to both the other parent as well as the child. The child trusts her parents to have her best interests at heart, so if one parent tells her that the other is dangerous, does not care about her, or has let her down, she might believe it rather than thinking that her parent is lying to her. She can gradually start to change the way she feels about the other parent.

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What Marriages Are Prohibited in Illinois?

 Posted on March 13, 2024 in Family Law

IL divorce lawyerLiving in the United States affords you a great deal of freedom and civil liberties. People are largely free to make decisions for themselves and eat, wear, think, and do whatever they want unless what they want could pose a threat to them or others. That is why there are speed limits, food and drug regulations, rules about how a business needs to treat its customers, and countless other ways the law restricts us to protect the greater good.

One area you may not expect there to be regulations involves who you can marry. In the state of Illinois, certain types of relationships are prohibited. If your marriage falls under this category, it can be annulled, meaning you can end your prohibited marriage without needing a divorce. The law would simply recognize that it was never legal to begin with, and it is essentially canceled. If you have questions about the validity of your marriage, a Wheaton, IL family law attorney can offer you answers.

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How Are Offshore Accounts Handled in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on March 04, 2024 in Asset Division

IL divorce lawyerA common divorce topic is the division of assets and property. Typical assets that a couple needs to divide in divorce include bank accounts, savings accounts, apartments, and cars. People with significant wealth sometimes have local bank accounts as well as offshore accounts abroad, which is perfectly legal. However, offshore accounts are of particular interest in divorce because they are sometimes used by a spouse to try to hide assets and avoid dividing them, which is not legal. If you are preparing for a divorce and are concerned that your spouse is using offshore accounts to hide assets, a knowledgeable DuPage County, IL asset division attorney can advise you on how to navigate this situation.

Why Would Someone Have an Offshore Account?

Some people have bank accounts in other countries if they also have a residence or business there. Overseas accounts can also be beneficial for international transactions as well as for various financial considerations. While using an offshore account to hide money from the IRS and avoid paying taxes you owe is illegal, managing your finances in multiple countries is not. However, hiding assets in offshore accounts in order to avoid dividing them with a spouse during divorce proceedings is against the law.

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How Does an Illinois Judge Decide What Is in My Child’s Best Interest?

 Posted on February 28, 2024 in Child Custody

IL family lawyerWhen parents go through a divorce, it is often quite difficult for them to agree on how they should split their parenting time and parental responsibilities, otherwise known as child custody. Some couples manage to come to some sort of agreement if they believe it will be best for their children. Others find that their personal conflicts make it impossible for them to communicate productively and figuring out an arrangement seems too daunting a task. In cases where the parents cannot reach a mutually acceptable agreement on how they will continue to care for their children, it is the court’s job to determine what will be in the child’s best interest. If you have questions about how a court can decide this, a knowledgeable Wheaton, IL child custody lawyer can give you answers.

What Factors Will a Judge Consider?

When trying to figure out what sort of arrangement would best serve the child in a divorce, there are many factors taken into consideration. These include but are not limited to:

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Understanding Dissipation of Assets in an Illinois Divorce

 Posted on February 19, 2024 in Asset Division

IL divorce lawyerAny assets that either spouse brings into the marriage and had before the wedding are generally considered individual assets, and anything obtained during the marriage is generally considered marital assets. When a couple gets a divorce, marital asset division is an important part of the divorce settlement. Unfortunately, sometimes a spouse will purposely misuse, waste, or destroy marital assets just before or during divorce proceedings. This is called dissipation of assets, and if you suspect your spouse is doing this, a Wheaton, IL divorce lawyer can help you navigate the steps you can take to remedy the situation.

When Does Dissipation of Assets Apply?

According to Illinois law, if a spouse diminishes marital assets while the marriage is in the process of breaking down, it is considered dissipation of assets. If a couple has concluded that there is no hope for any reconciliation and their next step will be divorce proceedings, and then one spouse does something that significantly diminishes the money that the couple has, this would likely be considered dissipation of assets. There are several different scenarios that might be included in this category:

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3 Tips for a High Asset Divorce in Illinois

 Posted on February 12, 2024 in Asset Division

IL divorce lawyerWhen a couple gets a divorce, they need to work out all the many ways that their separation will affect their lives. Typical married couples might have things like a shared bank account, home, car, retirement funds, and other assets that they will need to be divided among the spouses. If a couple has considerable wealth, theirs might be what is considered a high-asset divorce. The larger scope of assets being divided can make the entire process more complicated.

While there is no clear definition for the term high-asset divorce, it is commonly agreed that a couple whose assets are valued at a million dollars or more would fit the bill. Sometimes, this happens when one spouse comes from a wealthy background and has a demanding and lucrative career, and the other spouse does not work but instead maintains their household. Other times, both spouses work and earn money and contribute financial assets to the marriage. Either way, thoughts about how divorce can affect your standard of life can be quite stressful.

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Can I Travel With My Child Out of State During Our Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on February 09, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerFor some people, going on a trip can be a stressful mix of unnecessary spending, logistics, sleep arrangements, and getting children settled in a new environment just when it is time to return home. For others, travel is an excellent way to unwind, experience new things, and come home rejuvenated. 

If the second category describes you, then a trip might be exactly what you want especially when you are in the midst of a nerve-wracking divorce process. You might want to go on a trip with your child to help you enjoy some quality time together away from the negativity that might characterize the divorce proceedings. 

However, until any parenting arrangements have been finalized in a divorce, there may be questions as to whether or not you are legally permitted to take your child with you on a trip. If you are thinking about booking travel plans for you and your child before your divorce is finalized, a DuPage County, IL divorce lawyer can walk you through the implications and help you decide how to move forward.

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What Is the Difference Between Divorce and Annulment in Illinois?

 Posted on January 30, 2024 in Divorce

Wheaton Divorce LawyerWhenever a couple regrets being married, divorce is a very common option available to them. However, if they can meet certain criteria, annulment can also be a relevant possibility. As it is a less common procedure, people are generally less familiar with what exactly an annulment is. Divorce legally ends a marriage, while annulment legally deems it invalid and therefore not something that needs to be ended. As such, there are specific conditions that need to be met for a marriage to be annulled rather than ended by divorce. If you and your spouse do not want to stay married, a Wheaton, IL, divorce lawyer can explain what is involved in an annulment and help you decide whether this might be the right step for you.

What Are the Criteria for Annulment?

While divorce legally ends a valid marriage, an annulment is how the courts in the State of Illinois declare a marriage invalid. The court can issue a declaration of invalidity of marriage and then it is as if the couple was never truly married to begin with.

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