dupage county divorce lawyerThe legal and financial aspects of a marriage are often overlooked. Finances, however, are an essential element during a marriage and a divorce. The division of complex assets can be especially difficult, especially if those assets have a high value. Assets such as security funds, bonds, and small-cap stocks can frequently change in value, making them difficult to address during a divorce.

Businesses are also challenging to address during divorce. Even if a business owner started the business before marriage, if both spouses contributed to the business, it could become a marital asset. This means that both spouses have a right to a share of the business’s value. If spouses can come to an agreement about how to divide complex assets, they may be able to get a resolution outside of the court. However, if they cannot make an agreement that works for both parties, the court will determine the division of their assets. 

Appraisal and Division of Complex Assets in a Divorce 

The worth of complex assets often changes in value over time, making it difficult to determine their value. Parties may disagree on the worth of these assets when deciding who deserves what. When dividing these assets, it may be worthwhile to work with an experienced financial advisor or appraisal expert to determine the value of these assets. Parties need to understand the value of these assets so they can determine an equitable division of assets. It is common for one spouse to buy out the other spouse’s share of complex assets. For example, one spouse may retain full ownership of a business while the other spouse receives real estate or other assets of equal value. 


Different Types of Alimony in Illinois 

Posted on in spousal maintenance

dupage county divorce lawyerAlimony, also known as spousal maintenance, is financial support that can be granted to a spouse in a divorce. This is meant to help spouses unable to care for themselves financially after a divorce. For the court to decide to award spousal maintenance to a spouse, the court considers both parties' income and the marriage's length. The Illinois Marrige and Dissolution of Marrige Act describes three different types of alimony: fixed-term, reviewable, and indefinite. 

Fixed-Term Spousal Maintenance 

Fixed-term alimony involves payments that are provided by one spouse to the other for a set amount of time. The termination date for these payments is decided in advance. This type of alimony is appropriate for people who, after a divorce, have the potential for future employment with an income that allows them financial stability. The goal of fixed-term alimony is to give a person the time to become dependent on themself. 

Indefinite Term Spousal Maintenance 

Indefinite-term alimony is when a court orders permanent alimony with no termination date. This is appropriate when a spouse has no realistic employment opportunities or after the end of a long marriage—usually given to spouses who, during the marriage, took on the role of a stay-at-home parent or caretaker of the home. 


dupage county divorce lawyerA prenuptial agreement is an agreement that two spouses make before marriage. The agreement details how the spouses will handle their assets, debts, or other finances if the couple divorces or a spouse passes away and will go into effect when the couple gets married. 

While many people assume that prenuptial agreements can lead to complications within their marriage, they actually can do the opposite, creating an arrangement that removes any potential doubt parties may have regarding their financial interests in the case of a divorce.

There are several reasons why a couple may decide to get a prenuptial agreement. Some examples are children from a past marriage or just wanting to protect their personal assets or future inheritance. The prenuptial agreement must be in writing, agreed upon, and signed by both spouses. A court will typically enforce most prenuptial agreements, except for the few exceptions under certain circumstances, especially if the agreement seems grossly unfair or assets are distributed unjustly. 


wheaton postnuptial agreement lawyer Postnuptial agreements are voluntary agreements made during an existing marriage laying out financial agreements that a couple may want to establish in the case of a divorce. If the agreements are fair and agreed upon by both parties, then the postnuptial agreement will be enforced in the event of the death or divorce of a spouse. However, if the agreement is found to be unconscionable, or extremely unfair,  then it could be thrown out.

A few other scenarios that may invalidate a postnuptial agreement include coercion, a spouse misrepresenting themself, or incomplete financial disclosure. If the postnuptial agreement is one-sided, the court may change certain aspects of the contract to ensure that both parties get a fair deal. 

Is a Postnuptial Agreement Right For You? 

There are several reasons why a couple may consider entering a postnuptial agreement. The primary role of a postnuptial agreement is to protect the spouses’ assets and ensure that assets are split relatively in the case of a divorce.  


wheaton divorce lawyerWhen it comes to owning a business, whether it be a startup, a franchise, a family business, or an established company, having an accurate business valuation is essential when going through an Illinois divorce. An accurate valuation can help to ensure that each of the parties within the divorce can receive fair settlements and a fair split of any debt sustained during the marriage. 

Valuation Paves the Way for Asset Division in Divorce 

Illinois is an equitable distribution state, meaning that any marital assets will be split fairly. If the business in question was started before the marriage, then it would likely be considered a non-marital asset. If the business was acquired during the marriage, then it will be considered a marital asset. However, determining ownership is rarely this straightforward. 

Spouses who can negotiate a property division agreement and avoid the courtroom can save time and money. However, they must understand what the business is worth before addressing it during property division. If the case is litigated, an accurate business apprasial will be needed to be sure that each party receives a fair share of the business. 


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