Monthly Archives: December 2011

End-of-Year Checklist for Individuals Contemplating Divorce

Most couples who have recently decided to go their separate ways choose to wait until after the holiday season to file for divorce. Of course this is understandable, considering all the family obligations and events this time of year.

Once the New Year begins it is a time for turning the page and for fresh starts. Perhaps not surprisingly then, nationwide, more divorces are filed in January than any other month of the year. Even if you have chosen to wait until the beginning of next year to formally begin the divorce process, there are steps you can take as this year comes to a close to properly prepare.

One important step you can take is to collect year-end statements from your accounts. You will need to supply information regarding your bank accounts, brokerage accounts, credit cards and mortgages. As you receive month and year-end statements from these accounts keep them together in a safe place. If all your accounts are currently shared, you may also want to consider taking the step of opening new bank accounts and credit cards in your own name.

Another valuable step you can take is researching Illinois divorce attorneys and other professionals such as counselors or financial experts. You can set up appointments and consultations for January now. That way you can relax as this year winds down, knowing you are ready to begin the New Year on the right foot with the assistance of a knowledgeable team of experts.

Source: Forbes, End-of-the-Year Checklist for Divorcing Women, Jeff Landers, 6 December 2011

Increase in Delinquent Child Support Seen in Chicago Suburbs

Statistics from the Daily Herald show that the number of delinquent child support cases handled by the state, and also the amount of child support funds owed to parents are increasing in the Chicago suburbs. The increase is reflective of the challenges people are facing in the economic downtown, which has made it more difficult for parents to make and collect child support payments.

The Daily Herald reports that the number of Illinois child support cases tracked by the state for late payments has risen faster in the Chicagoland area than the rest of the state. In DuPage County, the number of cases in arrears rose 48 percent from 2008 to 2010, with 9,000 cases being tracked for delinquent child support. In the same time period, the total amount of back child support owed in DuPage County alone increased by 36 percent, to more than $110 million. McHenry County also saw a significant increase of 66 percent, while Kane County saw a 24 percent rise.

The increase in child support arrears is likely a direct result of the sluggish economy, as parents are struggling to make ends meet while looking for new jobs or working even harder to keep those they have. With less money and a steady stream of bills to pay, it has become easier for parents to fall behind on court-ordered child-support payments. This can result in children, and the parents caring for them, being without the financial support they rely on.

Source: Daily Herald, Delinquent child-support cases grow in suburbs, Mike Riopell and Kerry Lester, 28 November 2011