Tag Archives: division of property

Who is Considered an “Expert” in a Family Law Case?

DuPage County family law attorneyThe more complex a divorce is, the more likely there will be experts utilized to provide information to the case. These professionals are often called in by one side to help sway the court’s decisions on various elements. Attorneys can rely on an expert to help prove their client’s parenting skills, disprove the other’s parenting abilities, reveal hidden bank accounts, or prove through bank statements that the other spouse was spending marital money on an affair. Below we outline a few different types of family law experts that could play a role in your own divorce case.

Child Psychologist or Child Expert

A child expert is a psychologist who meets with parents, children, and other family members and relevant parties in order to make recommendations on a parenting plan and custody.

Forensic Accountant

Much of divorce is about asset division, alimony, and child support. A forensic accountant may be called in to assess tax issues, provide insight into a spouse’s standard of living, place value on a business, or provide information about credit card statements or cash-flow.

Property Appraisers

These experts can produce an accurate value on jewelry, artwork, vehicles, furniture, and other assets as part of marital property division. Additionally, real estate appraisers may be necessary to assess the value of a home or other property.

Vocational Rehabilitation Expert

Spousal support, often referred to as alimony, is often awarded on the basis of the receiving spouse’s ability to earn an income in the future. This income sometimes depends on that spouse’s ability to attain the necessary education or job training. A vocational rehabilitation expert may give testimony about a spouse’s potential for vocational training or education. For example, the paying spouse may use such an expert to show the court that vocational rehabilitation is possible and that alimony should be minimal or temporary, and the receiving spouse may use such an expert for the opposite reason.

Call a Wheaton, IL Divorce Attorney

If you are going through a complex or contested divorce, you need to work with an experienced attorney, who may use additional experts to help secure a favorable outcome. To get the results you want in child custody, child support, and asset division, call the dedicated DuPage County family law attorneys at Andrew Cores Family Law Group today at 630-871-1002 to schedule a free consultation.




How is Marital Property Divided in Illinois After Divorce?

DuPage County divorce lawyersBuilding a life together as a married couple inevitably involves the accumulation of personal assets. The time and effort it took to financially afford and personally choose these items cannot be measured in dollars alone. Facing the prospect of dividing years of memories and hard work these items represent due to divorce requires some ability to look at this situation with objective eyes. Neither should expect to get everything they want.

Part of this evaluation is having a realistic sense of what percentage of marital property each spouse should expect to receive, and Illinois is not a community property state that guarantees each spouse 50 percent of all property. Instead, it follows equitable distribution rules that base property division in divorce on what is most fair under the circumstances, which creates a vague standard that is at the discretion of the judge. As a result, spouses should make all efforts to mutually agree on property division, so the outcome is known, but also having an understanding of how courts view this issue and the process judges use to formulate a settlement is important as well.

Property Division Laws

One of the most important things to understand about property division in an Illinois divorce is that only marital property may be divided. Non-marital property, including inheritances, gifts, and property owned before marriage by one spouse and kept separate, remain with the person who purchased or received these assets. Further, Illinois is a no-fault divorce state, so the misconduct of a spouse during marriage, outside of using marital funds for non-marital purposes, will not factor into a court’s analysis of property division. Instead, the judge will work through a long list of prescribed factors to determine which allocation of assets and liabilities would be most fair. Some of these factors include:

  • The contribution of each spouse to the acquisition, accumulation or increase and decrease in value of marital property, including spouses who stayed at home and took care of the household;
  • Dissipation or waste of marital property by either spouse;
  • The property’s value;
  • The length of the marriage;
  • The economic circumstances for each party as a result of the property division;
  • The ability of each spouse to generate income;
  • The parenting responsibilities of each spouse; and
  • The tax consequences of the property division.

Facilitating a Better Property Settlement

As mentioned, the best way to handle this issue is to decide how to divide assets and liabilities privately, but even if a court is asked to settle the distribution, there are things a person can do to put them in a better position. First, organize finances before the divorce even begins, which will allow a spouse to know what they have. In addition, figure out a budget that takes into account the cost of litigating this issue, as well as the amount of resources one will need after the divorce to survive financially. Finally, make sure the tax consequences of any property settlement, as well as support obligations, are fully understood for post-divorce purposes so that a spouse does not end up financially underwater due to lack of planning.

Speak to a Wheaton, IL Divorce Attorney

Dividing your property is both an emotional and financial experience that is hard to navigate alone. Save your stress by working with an experienced divorce attorney. The skilled DuPage County family law attorneys at the Andrew Cores Family Law Group know the implications and obstacles of forming a property settlement and can provide the guidance you need to get the best possible result. Contact us at 630-871-1008 for a free consultation.



Negotiating to Keep Your Home After a Divorce

home, DuPage County divorce lawyerOne of the biggest struggles for many divorcing couples is determining which party, if either, will get to keep the marital home and how the finances can be arranged to make it happen. When you and your spouse share a mortgage on a home, ending one party’s responsibility is not usually as simple as taking his or her name off of the note. If you are intending to keep the home, transferring the mortgage into your name alone is a process that may take months or even years, and preparation is absolutely vital.

Review the Feasibility

Before jumping in, you need to take an in-depth look at what your post-divorce financial situation will look like. If you are like most people going through a divorce, it is important to keep in mind that you will be required to support yourself—with or without some help from spousal maintenance—on a single income. You will want to make sure that you cannot only afford the mortgage payments but also all of the expenses associated with owning a home as well, including taxes, utilities, repairs, insurance, and more.

Moving Forward Alone

Once you have determined that keeping the home is, in fact, realistic, and your spouse has agreed to the decision, you will probably need to provide some sort of compensation to your spouse to offset his or her portion of the value of the home. You may choose to draw directly from the equity in the home or offer some other asset or property of value to do so. Either way, you will most likely need to take out a new mortgage on the home, listing you as the sole borrower. Your spouse will probably be strongly supportive of this idea so that he or she cannot be held liable for any possible future defaults.

Potential Complications

Depending upon your specific economic circumstances, it may take some time to get the mortgage fully into your name. Cashing out equity, for example, may raise the mortgage to a level that you cannot currently afford, so you may need to increase your income. You will want to begin your efforts as quickly as you can, starting as soon as you realize that divorce is imminent and that you are intending to keep the home. It is possible to work an agreed-upon timeframe into the terms of your divorce settlement, but both of you will want to keep that period as short as possible for the sake of financial security.

If you have questions about ways to keep your marital home in divorce, contact the experienced DuPage County family law attorneys at Andrew Cores Family Law Group. We offer a free, no-obligation consultation in which you can discuss your case, ask questions, and get the answers you need to make informed, responsible decisions. Call 630-871-1002 today to schedule an appointment and put our knowledgeable team to work for you.