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How to Prevent Financial Issues from Causing a Divorce

Wheaton divorce lawyerThe Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts determined that nearly a fourth of all marriages end in divorce due to financial issues — that represents the third most common cause of divorce. With an economic recession upon us and no certain end in sight, the money problems that many married couples usually face are bound to be further exacerbated. Luckily, there are various ways that one can keep their financial concerns from becoming an issue in their marriage.

Open Communication from the Start

Whether it be done before the marriage, by creating a prenuptial agreement, or early in the marriage, by being upfront and honest about financial concerns, open communication can go a long way toward keeping marital finances in check. Couples should avoid making the following mistakes in order to keep this communication present:

    • Hiding debts or assets before, during, or after marriage.

    • Keeping secrets about financial habits or expenditures.

    • Lying about how much money or debt you may or may not have.

    • Being dishonest about your apprehensions, history, and approaches toward finances with each other.

Equitable and Cooperative Budgeting

You two are in this together now, and whether you like it or not, that includes your finances. Co-mingling funds and accounts is not necessarily a bad thing as long as you are both honest and cooperative about your budgeting and financial goals. To achieve this, it is important to do the following:

    • Set your financial goals as a couple. From having kids and their associated expenses to planning regular vacations or saving for a house, you two have a lot to plan for. If you are not on the same page about those goals, resentment could build and lead to underlying tension. Be sure to discuss your financial goals and evaluate your accounts before making big purchasing decisions.

    • Grant equal control and influence over the money. No matter who has or makes the most money, no single spouse should have total control of the finances. This should be a cooperative effort. You are one team now, working together as a unit to achieve your collective financial goals. Both you and your spouse should be informed on the details of your accounts as well as your monthly bills.

    • Enable some financial freedom. While collaboration and cooperation are key, you two also need some financial independence. You may consider allocating an equal yet minimal amount of your shared monthly budget to each other’s discretionary spending. This will allow you both to buy whatever you want for yourselves, without any judgment or negativity coming from the other spouse.

Contact a Wheaton IL Divorce Lawyer

Sometimes, the best way to handle things is by turning to an external party for assistance. If you two have tried everything and money is still making your marriage intolerable, consider calling a DuPage County divorce attorney for help. The compassionate team at Andrew Cores Family Law Group will give you all the guidance you need for a successful, painless divorce. For help with your divorce, contact our experienced divorce lawyers at 630-871-1002 for a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jenniferwoods/2015/07/06/10-ways-to-prevent-money-from-ruining-your-marriage/#2a514a944c9c

https://www.thebalance.com/dont-let-your-money-ruin-your-marriage-2386042

https://www.investopedia.com/articles/pf/09/marriage-killing-money-issues.asp

Can Children Know What Is in Their Best Interests in a Divorce Case?

Throughout the divorce process, if you have children, you and your co-parent will need to devise a parenting plan that clearly defines the allocation of parental responsibilities, parenting time schedules, and other child-related issues. In the state of Illinois, the standard used to determine many of these concerns is referred to as “the best interests of the child.” When decisions are made regarding custody of children of divorcing or separating parents, their best interests have the greatest bearing on the end result. While Illinois has a strict set of guidelines elaborating on those “best interests,” these issues may be open to interpretation, especially since the circumstances surrounding each child custody case are unique. In some cases, determining how much of a say children should have regarding what is in their best interests can be difficult.

3 Ways to Accept Your Children’s Opinion of Their “Best Interests”

Although “the best interests of the child” are critical, parents may not take children’s desires into account when addressing these matters. Here are some ways to make sure you, your co-parent, your attorney, and the court maintain a clear understanding of your children’s best interests and how their wishes may affect your case:

  1. Reject the idea that young children have no understanding of what is good for them. Many social scientists and other experts believe that the so-called “age of reason” for children is seven years old. By that age, they are able to make decisions and judgments based on their own ideas, observations, opinions, and insights. With this in mind, if your children are around that age or older, but they tend to shy away from the spotlight, consider enlisting the assistance of social workers or other similar professionals who can observe the child and interview them to understand exactly how they feel about everything, including the impending divorce itself.

  2. Be open to the possibility of juvenile rights in child custody being employed. Children will not be considered legal adults until they reach the age of 18, and at this point, they will be able to make major decisions for themselves, and you will no longer be responsible for them by law. However, even when children are younger, they can still provide input and insight into how matters related to child custody should be decided. Of course, courts will not rely solely on this information. When you are negotiating agreements regarding the allocation of parental responsibilities, the children’s input is useful and often quite vital, and in some cases, it may be necessary to appoint a guardian ad litem or child custody evaluator to gain an understanding of children’s wishes and determine the role they should play in the decisions being made.

  3. Know that children are very honest and perceptive. Many children, especially those at younger ages, do not usually intentionally lie unless taught or instructed to do so. They will most likely make their feelings known about your divorce. In many cases, you will discover much more about your children’s best interests in their own truthful proclamations than you might ever be able to learn through other methods.

Contact a DuPage County Divorce Attorney

As you work to determine what is in your children’s best interests during your divorce, you should give careful thought and consideration to your children’s own perspective. For legal help creating a parenting plan and addressing other family law issues, reach out to a Wheaton, IL child custody lawyer at 630-871-1002 for a free consultation. The skilled professionals at Andrew Cores Family Law Group will work with you to reach a positive outcome to your case and ensure that your children’s ongoing needs will be met.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=8300000&SeqEnd=10000000

https://www.isba.org/sites/default/files/teachers/publications/Kids%20and%20the%20Law.pdf

https://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/20/opinion/sunday/child-custody-in-whose-best-interests.html

 

How Does a Spouse’s Incarceration Affect an Illinois Divorce?

DuPage County Contested Divorce AttorneyIf a spouse is currently in prison, divorce is an important decision that the couple may consider. The complex feelings and consequences of seeing a husband or wife go to prison can be overwhelming. In addition, the couple’s children will find it especially challenging to live without their incarcerated parent. This is why, depending on the situation, divorce might be the best option. There are many other reasons to initiate a divorce under these circumstances, and there are steps to take to ensure a seamless legal proceeding.

Reasons for Divorce During Incarceration

Studies suggest that incarceration increases divorce rates, and even if the inmate is released from prison, the marriage might still be more susceptible to divorce long thereafter. In fact, for every year a spouse is in prison, the likelihood of divorce during or after imprisonment increased by about 32 percent. There are many reasons for a divorce between one spouse and an incarcerated spouse, including:

  • Estrangement

  • Feelings of loneliness

  • Lack of intimacy

  • Financial problems

  • Child support issues

Reasons for Divorce After Incarceration

It might be easy to assume that once the incarcerated spouse is released from prison and back at home, the dynamics of the marriage and family will return to the way they were prior to incarceration. However, the truth is that the transition is often much more complicated than that. Even if the incarcerated spouse is released from prison, there are still greater odds of divorce resulting from the time spent locked up. Criminologists have researched the effects of incarceration on marriages and have found that even after being released from prison, the formerly incarcerated spouse and his/her spouse might exhibit the following characteristics:

  • More violent behavior

  • Less loving qualities

  • Extramarital affairs

Combine the above traits with many of the same issues faced during incarceration that persist even after imprisonment, and divorce becomes a likely outcome for many of these couples.

Legal Process for Divorce When One Spouse Is Incarcerated

Overall, the legal process for divorce when one spouse is incarcerated is not much different from the usual divorce process. In many cases, the two spouses agree to have an uncontested divorce, since this is the quickest, easiest, and most affordable option. In situations where a divorce is contested by one or both spouses, the process will be more challenging. Funds are limited, making it difficult for one or both spouses to afford a lawyer, and the imprisonment makes appearing in court problematic. Thankfully, some courtrooms in Illinois have agreed to allow proceedings via video.

Contact a DuPage County Divorce Lawyer

Divorce under any circumstances can be a difficult decision to make, but when one of the spouses is serving time in prison, it can be even more challenging. Although it might seem daunting at first, with a knowledgeable and dedicated Wheaton, IL contested divorce attorney providing guidance, you can be prepared to navigate this major life event with ease. If you or your spouse are currently incarcerated, and you have questions about the divorce process under these special circumstances, call our office today at 630-871-1002 for a complimentary consultation.

Sources:

https://www.vox.com/2014/5/29/5756646/every-year-of-a-prison-term-makes-a-couple-32-percent-more-likely-to

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/09/the-difficulty-of-getting-a-divorce-in-prison/538653/