Wheaton divorce lawyerBecause litigating divorces is costly in terms of both time and money, Illinois courts can require couples seeking a divorce to attend mediation and work out their issues without help from a judge. For couples dealing with domestic violence, however, mediation may not be wise and might even be dangerous. If you are considering a divorce and have an abusive partner, it is important to understand how domestic violence can impact the divorce process in Illinois and to have a great divorce attorney who can help you leave the relationship safely. 

Mediation and Collaborative Divorce May Not Be an Option

Dealing with a spouse who is physically violent, emotionally abusive, or manipulative makes negotiating in good faith practically impossible. If your spouse would use negotiations as an opportunity to intimidate you, lie about your finances, or gain the upper hand in matters of child custody, it may be best to stay away from alternative dispute resolution methods and allow your divorce to be resolved in court with help from a judge. 

You May Need an Order of Protection

Orders of protection are fairly easy to get, especially if you need an emergency order of protection (EOP). If you time the initial hearing correctly, you can get up to three weeks of court-enforceable protection from your abusive spouse and get enough time to leave your home safely. Your attorney can help you extend your order of protection and ensure it covers you and your children if necessary. 

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IL divorce lawyerOne of the hardest things for victims of domestic violence and emotional abuse to do is try to leave an abusive partner. In fact, many people are afraid that trying to leave may escalate an already dangerous situation, and research suggests this concern is well-founded. Fortunately, there are systems in place to help protect partners in abusive relationships and help them leave when they are ready. One such system is an order of protection, which is a legal order from a judge that can require an abusive partner to stay away from their victim. If you want to get an Illinois divorce and think an order of protection might help you, read on.

What is an Order of Protection and What Can it Do?

There are three kinds of orders of protection in Illinois: Emergency orders of protection, which last up to 21 days, plenary orders of protection, which last up to two years, and interim orders of protection, which are only issued when a hearing has been delayed for some reason.

Orders of protection are flexible and can be made to suit the particular needs of your situation. Depending on your concerns and the evidence you have to document your allegations, orders of protection can offer many safety measures, including but not limited to:

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Posted on in Domestic Violence

control, DuPage County family law attorneyDomestic violence occurs when a person physically, emotionally, or sexually abuses their romantic partner or another member of his or her family or household. Such violence, which is also called domestic abuse, can happen to anyone. Men and women alike can be victims of it. People of all races, cultures, income levels, sexual orientation, and age can be affected by domestic abuse.

At the heart of domestic violence is the abuser’s need to control their victim. Often, they use destructive and cruel behaviors to maintain power and control over their significant other or spouse. A perpetrator of domestic abuse may:

  • Physically harm their partner by punching, slapping, kicking, or otherwise hurting them;
  • Use weapons to hurt or intimidate their partner;
  • Threaten their partner or their partner’s family;
  • Deprive their partner of access to finances or use money to control him or her;
  • Purposely humiliate their partner with the intention of breaking him or her down emotionally; or
  • Force their partner to have sex against his or her will.

These are only a few of the tactics that abusers use to hurt their partners. If your romantic partner or spouse is doing anything to you that makes you feel afraid, threatened, or unsafe, please do not hesitate to reach out for help.

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abuse, DuPage County domestic violence attorneysRecently, the issues of harassment and abuse have been in the spotlight more than ever before. Allegations of sexual harassment or rape have been made against many influential individuals such as President Donald Trump, Senator Al Franken, actor Kevin Spacey, and film producer Harvey Weinstein.  These allegations have sparked a fury of media attention on the issues of harassment and abuse. Time Magazine even dedicated their prestigious “Person of the Year” designation to “the silence breakers”: those women and men who came out with their own stories of violence, intimidation, or harassment. But, what is a person to do if they are suffering at the hands of their own spouse or romantic partner?

Domestic Violence Can Take Many Forms

Domestic violence is defined as a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner. When it occurs between spouses or significant others, domestic violence may be referred to as intimate partner violence or relationship abuse. People of all ages, ethnicities, sexual orientations, religions and income levels can become victims of domestic violence. Both men and women can be victims of domestic violence or perpetrators of it. It is unfortunately not uncommon for an abuser to:

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domestic violence, DuPage County family lawyerIn salons throughout Illinois, hairdressers and stylists have heard it all. They are privy to some of the personal details of their clients’ lives. The intimate relationships they develop with their clients allows many stylists insider information about marriages that may be failing, sexual indiscretions, and other juicy gossip. Due to the nature of their jobs—and the close physical proximity to their clients’ bodies—beauty technicians are often among the first “outsiders” to suspect issues of domestic violence. In some cases, the client may even flat-out say it. Thanks to a new law, stylists and beauticians will soon have the training and tools to help those who have been victimized.

Licensing Requirements

The new law, which went into effect on January 1, 2017, amended the existing statute regarding licensing for barbers, hairstylists, nail technicians, and other beauty professionals. To obtain or renew their state certification, individuals will be required to participate in an “awareness and education” program focused on preventing and identifying domestic abuse. The program was developed specifically for beauty professionals does not purport to make trainees experts on domestic violence. Instead, the program’s goals are to help stylists recognize the signs of domestic abuse and to provide resources to clients who ask for help.

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