Tag Archives: Wheaton divorce attorneys

Avoid These Social Media Blunders During Your Divorce

social media, DuPage County divorce attorneysThe internet has revolutionized the way we communicate with each other. Social media has allowed us to send and receive information about each other in the blink of an eye. Nearly 70 percent of Americans have at least a Facebook account. Although websites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram can be wonderful tools to stay in touch with friends and family, they can also become a significant responsibility during tumultuous times such as a divorce. If you are considering ending your marriage, you should know that social media activity can come up during a divorce. It is critical for anyone getting divorced to be intentional about what they post online.

Social Media Mistake #1: Oversharing Personal Information

For many married individuals, separating from their spouse leaves them feeling alone and empty. In order to vent their frustrations or express their grief about the marriage, they take to social media. This is a major mistake. Unfortunately, careless comments made by people getting divorced can and have come back to haunt them.  In one such case, a wife’s Facebook activity was used as evidence during a formal custody case. The couple shared custody of a 4-year-old child together. The husband alleged that the wife took frequent vacations without their child while she had custody of him. The court ordered the wife to show her Facebook profile. It contained many pictures proving that she frequently spent time away from her child during her allotted parenting time.

Social Media Mistake #2: Letting Your Emotions Get the Better of You

Going through a divorce can be incredibly taxing emotionally and psychologically. However, serious problems can arise when spouses getting divorced express those emotions online. Another example of a divorce case that was affected by Facebook is one in which a woman complained online, “My children have a really, really bad father.” The court considered this and other statements evidence that she would not support her children’s relationship with their father. The court awarded the father more parental responsibility as a result.

Social Media Mistake #3: Getting Caught in a Lie

Social media posts are often timestamped and location-tagged. Things like “checking in” at a location a spouse said they would avoid can bring his or her trustworthiness into question during the divorce process. Some divorcing spouses have gotten into hot water after posting pictures on social media of expensive purchases or assets that he or she did not disclose during discussions about property division. Creating a profile on a dating app like Tinder or OKCupid before a divorce is finalized is another critical social media mistake to avoid.

Getting Divorced? Let Us Help.

For sound legal guidance at every step of your divorce, contact the experienced DuPage County family law attorneys at Andrew Cores Family Law Group. Call us at 630-871-1002 today for a free consultation.





Understanding Your Role in Creating a Parenting Plan

parenting plan, DuPage County family law attorneysWhen you are in the midst of a divorce, it may seem very tempting to just sit back and the let a judge make the difficult decisions. Of course, this approach fails to account for the multiple court appearances that will be probably be necessary, and the fact that you will still need to provide the court with all of the information and evidence relevant to your case. Divorce laws in Illinois explicitly promote amicable agreements between divorcing spouses whenever possible. Divorcing parents, in particular, are expected to work together in developing a plan for cooperative parenting and protecting their children’s best interests.

Parents Know Best

There are many examples in Illinois family law indicating that a court must presume that parents will act in the best interest of their child. This is based on the idea that, unless proven otherwise, parents are equipped to fully understand the situation at hand and to make decisions for their child that are ultimately beneficial.

Under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, the same concept applies to co-parenting and the allocation of parental responsibilities. Rather than assuming that courts should make parenting judgments, the law requires divorcing parents to develop a strategy for parenting together. The plan, of course, must be reviewed and approved by the court, but the court will only make changes or enter a judgment of its own when absolutely necessary to protect the child’s interests.

Parenting Plans

According to the law, once a proceeding for the allocation of parental responsibilities—formerly called “child custody”—has begun, parents have 120 days to file a proposed parenting plan. The plan must address each party’s rights, decision-making authority, parenting time schedule, and a number of other concerns required by law. The deadline may be extended if either parent can show good cause. If the parents cannot agree on a plan, the court has the authority to order mediation to assist in the process. Should mediation ultimately fail, or if either party refuses to participate in good faith, the court may allocate parental responsibilities, likely taking the refusal to cooperate into account.

A parenting plan that addresses all of the appropriate concerns and that is reasonable to both parents will be approved by the court and entered as part of the divorce judgment. Parents can later amend the plan either by agreement or by showing of a substantial change in circumstances.

Legal Advocates for Parents

If you have questions about divorce, parenting plans, or the allocation of parental responsibilities, contact an experienced Wheaton family law attorney. We will help you find the answers you need so that you can make an informed, responsible decision about how to proceed with your case. Call 630-462-1980 to schedule an appointment at Andrew Cores Family Law Group today.




The Basics of Equitable Distribution in Illinois

equitable, DuPage County property division attorneysIn the movies and on television, casual references to divorce and property division seem to promote the idea that divorcing spouses will automatically split their assets down the middle, with each person getting an equal share. While there may be some level of truth to that assumption in certain states, the reality in Illinois is often much more complex. Divorce and property division statutes in the state require the equitable distribution of marital assets, which means fair and just, not necessarily equal.

Negotiated Agreements

As with most aspects of divorce, there is no requirement that all decisions must be left up to the court. You and your spouse are able to work out a property division agreement that is reasonable and meets the needs of all involved parties. If the resulting agreement is not unconscionably one-sided and you and your spouse voluntarily agree to its terms, the court is very likely to approve it and incorporate it into your divorce settlement. Such an agreement, however, is not always possible; in which case, the court must intervene and make a determination.

Considerations for Equitable Distribution

To begin the process, the court must first establish the marital estate and its value. With few exceptions, any property acquired by either spouse during the marriage is subject to division. Value can be determined by professional appraisers, as needed, or by reasonable estimates. Then, the court will be tasked with reaching a conclusion regarding what is equitable and just based upon the circumstances of the marriage and divorce. By law, required considerations include, but are not limited to:

  • Each spouse’s contribution to the marital estate, including the intangible contributions of a homemaker or stay-at-home parent;
  • Any property dissipated by either spouse;
  • The duration of the marriage;
  • The value of property allocated to each spouse, and the anticipated impact of the allocations;
  • The age, health, income capacity, and resources of each spouse;
  • Provisions being made for the couple’s children;
  • Pending requests or previous decisions regarding spousal maintenance; and
  • The tax consequences of any and all property allocations.

Marital misconduct may not be considered, no matter how egregious the actions may have been. Thus, cheating, drug abuse, and abandonment may have no bearing on the property division process, though a spouse may have other avenues for remedy in such a situation.

If you are considering divorce and have questions about property division and equitable distribution in Illinois, contact an experienced DuPage County family law attorney. We will review your case, help you understand your options, and provide the answers you need throughout the divorce process. Call 630-871-1002 to schedule a free consultation at Andrew Cores Family Law Group today.