Category Archives: Divorce

What Should I Include in My Divorce Planning Checklist?

DuPage County family law attorney divorce preparationThinking about the end of your can be emotional and intimidating, due to a fear of the unknown and what comes after the dust settles. In many divorce cases, a couple may have experienced problems in their relationship for a while, which ultimately led to the decision to separate. If it seems like divorce may be on the horizon, planning ahead can benefit you in the long run, especially considering all the decisions that need to be made.

During the planning process, it helps to document everything, from bank statements to credit card receipts. This ensures you will have proof if any aspects of your divorce are contested and you have to fight out the details in court. It is also a good idea to seek legal counsel to ensure you so you are protected both legally and financially.

Steps for Planning Ahead

Before filing for divorce, you should think about where you will live and what your income and expenses will be post-separation. It is imperative to take inventory of your shared financial affairs, including investments and insurance policies, as well as other assets like houses, vehicles, and more. Make photocopies of deeds, insurance policies, and other financial documents. You should also write down all the account numbers for banks accounts, investment and retirement accounts, credit cards, and car loans. This way, you will know what you are entitled to as your share of the marital assets.

Divorce can be expensive. Start saving money as soon as possible to ensure that you will have enough to cover the legal fees. You should also know the costs of moving and what your new rent or mortgage will be at a new residence. You want to avoid accepting a divorce settlement that does not provide you with the financial resources you deserve just because you are desperate. It might also be helpful to speak to a financial advisor who can recommend the best financial strategy to fit your needs moving forward.

If you move out of the marital home, it is smart to get a post office box to ensure that you do not miss any important mail, especially if you receive checks or time-sensitive legal documents to sign. You will likely want to set up your own email address for privacy reasons if you shared one with your spouse during the marriage.

When a divorce includes children, you need to arrange a time and a place when you will tell the children you are divorcing. You should try to use appropriate language the kids will understand, while reassuring them that you both still love them and the divorce is not their fault. It is also never too early to figure out how you are going to raise them as divorced parents. That includes working out child custody and parenting time arrangements that are agreeable to everyone while protecting the best interests of the children.

Contact a Wheaton Divorce Attorney

Going through a divorce can be difficult, and you do not want to make any hasty decisions or mistakes that could cost you in the end. Our DuPage County divorce lawyers will guide you through the steps of the divorce process, ensuring that you consider everything that could impact your future, especially financial matters. Contact the Andrew Cores Family Law Group at 630-871-1002 to schedule a free consultation.



When Is Supervised Parenting Time Appropriate in an Illinois Divorce?

Wheaton-supervised-parenting-time-lawyerDuring and after a divorce, the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act allows both parents to have reasonable parenting time with their child. In some situations, if a parent is worried about his or her child’s physical or mental well-being when spending time with the other parent, he or she can request a hearing to ask for supervised visits. The parent requesting this supervision needs to show evidence to support this request. If you are ordered to have supervised parenting time with your child, an experienced family law attorney can help you determine the best way to proceed.

Factors that May Require Supervision

Many factors are considered when deciding if parenting time will be supervised or not. In general, Illinois courts prefer to promote a healthy parent-child relationship, even during disputes over parental responsibilities (child custody). For a parent to have supervised parenting time, the court must consider the child to be in serious danger if he or she were to be left alone for a period of time with that parent. The court also has the right to modify an existing parenting time order if needed.
If two ex-spouses have an argument, or if one parent does not like the other parent’s new partner, that typically does not qualify as seriously endangering the child mentally, physically, or emotionally. On the other hand, if the other parent (or his or her new love interest) is physically or verbally abusive to the child, that is grounds for seeking supervised parenting time. In some cases involving domestic abuse to the other parent or the child, the court may issue an order of protection to limit or restrict an allegedly abusive parent’s access to the child entirely.
If one parent is diagnosed as mentally ill or is found to be abusing drugs or alcohol, those would be valid reasons for supervised parenting time. After a certain amount of time, supervised parenting time orders can be reviewed to determine if they should be reversed or modified. This could happen in cases where an alcoholic parent becomes sober, or if they are under the care of a physician and are seeking treatment or therapy for a mental disorder.

Who Can Supervise Parenting Time?

Once supervised parenting time is ordered, the court can appoint another family member, a friend, or a third party to supervise the visits between a parent and child. Supervised parenting time centers can provide a neutral meeting place where trained staff or social workers can observe the visits. In most scenarios, there is no fee for low-income families to attend these centers.
In Illinois, courts can place other types of restrictions on parenting time if they determine it is necessary or in the best interest of the child, including specifying certain locations for visits,  denying parenting time when the parent is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or restricting overnight parenting time.
Normally, only parents have a legal right to parenting time. In certain situations, however,  grandparents, great-grandparents, step-parents, and siblings can request a visitation order from the court if they so choose.

Contact a DuPage County Parenting Time Lawyer

Divorce can be difficult in many ways. If certain events lead to you being required to have supervised parenting time with your child, you should speak to a diligent Wheaton family law attorney. We can review your case to determine if the order can be reversed or modified. Call our office today at 630-871-1002 for a free consultation.



How Can a Business Owner Hide Assets During Divorce?

Wheaton divorce and hidden assets lawyerThere are many ways that spouses attempt to hide marital assets from their wives or husbands. Methods can be as simple as stashing cash in a secret safe deposit box or transferring funds to family members or friends with the intent to recover them once the divorce is finalized. Other methods are somewhat more complex, such as creating offshore bank accounts or asking an employer to delay a large bonus or salary increase until after divorce.

Not only does hiding assets affect the division of property during divorce, but it can also affect child support payments and alimony. A husband or wife that successfully conceals marital property can end up getting away with tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars that would have otherwise been distributed to their spouse or used for child support.

Business owners are at a great advantage when it comes to hiding assets during divorce, because there are dozens of ways that significant assets can be concealed. In many cases, a person may attempt to devalue the business, which is the same as stealing money from their spouse.

Unlawful Methods of Devaluing a Business

Small businesses do not always have small profits. In fact, 49 percent of full-time business owners have sales between $100,000 and $1 million per year. Some methods that business owners may use to attempt to reduce the value of their business include:

  • Failing to Report Cash Payments—A business owner that receives cash may hide these unreported earnings in a safety deposit box or a secret bank account.

  • Creating a Fake Employee—A spouse may pay a salary to an employee that does not exist, with plans to void those paychecks at a later time.

  • Prepaying Expenses—A business owner may make payments in advance for certain expenses, such as employee benefits, office supplies or furniture, or raw materials, with the intent of reducing the business’s bottom line.

  • Overpaying Taxes—A spouse may pay more in taxes than is actually owed, in hopes of receiving a large refund after the divorce has been finalized.

  • Welcoming Debts—A business owner may allow clients to defer payments until after the divorce is finalized in order to reduce the income earned by the business.

Reach Out to a DuPage County Hidden Asset Attorney

Do not let your spouse cheat you out of your fair share of marital property or use unlawful methods to reduce their child support or spousal maintenance payments. Hold them accountable by hiring an experienced divorce attorney. Here at the Andrew Cores Family Law Group, our attorneys are skilled at uncovering hidden assets, and we will ensure that you receive the marital property and financial support you deserve. Call our Wheaton divorce attorneys today at 630-871-1002 to schedule a free consultation.