Recent Blog Posts

Working With a Guardian Ad Litem in Illinois

 Posted on February 27, 2024 in Child Custody

IL divorce lawyerParents who are going through a child custody case or divorce involving children often get anxious when they find out a guardian ad litem has been assigned to their case. However, guardians ad litem are a very normal part of a contested custody battle. Since the court will need to make decisions about what is best for the child, it will need an impartial person to investigate things like the child’s needs and relationship with each parent. The court needs more than in-court testimony given by each parent, both of whom are interested parties. Children, especially young children, often cannot provide useful and honest testimony in court while under stress. It is important to follow your DuPage County, IL, child custody attorney’s advice when it comes to working with a guardian ad litem.

Tips for Successfully Working With a Guardian Ad Litem 

While having a guardian ad litem come to interview your child can be nerve-wracking, taking steps like coaching the child on what to say will only make things worse. Some tips for working with a guardian ad litem include:

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Financial Deception in Divorce

 Posted on February 23, 2024 in Division of Assets

IL divorce lawyerIt is not uncommon for people who are getting divorced to realize that their spouse has not been honest about their financial situation. Some spouses begin hiding assets. Others conceal debts after dissipating marital assets. When you get divorced, your marital assets and marital debts alike will need to be divided equitably under Illinois state law. What does this mean if you do not actually know what your spouse owns and owes? It means that your DuPage County, IL, divorce lawyer will likely need to conduct a thorough investigation, which may involve bringing in another professional. It is important to have an accurate understanding of your marital property before you can work towards resolving your divorce.

Hidden Debts and Dissipation of Marital Assets

Hidden debts and the dissipation of marital assets are two distinct but sometimes related concepts. Dissipation of marital assets occurs when one spouse spends money that should have belonged to the marriage frivolously on themself without the consent of the other spouse. If your spouse spends thousands of dollars traveling with their affair partner, they have likely dissipated marital assets.

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What to Do if Your Spouse Wants Full Custody

 Posted on February 20, 2024 in Child Custody

IL divorce lawyer“I am going for full custody of the kids, and you will never see them,” is a common, but usually empty, threat during a contentious divorce. It takes a lot of evidence that a parent poses a legitimate risk of harm to their children for the court to grant one parent exclusive custody. In all likelihood, you do not need to worry about never seeing your children again unless you have actually been convicted of child abuse or a similar crime. Illinois courts make child custody decisions based on what is in the best interests of the child. Courts have long recognized that it is nearly always in a child’s best interest to have an ongoing relationship with both parents under most circumstances. However, if your spouse is demanding exclusive custody, it is important to be represented by an experienced Wheaton, IL, divorce and child custody lawyer who can stand up for your rights as a parent.

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Understanding Separate and Marital Assets

 Posted on February 15, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerWhen you get divorced, your separate assets are yours to keep. Your spouse has no claim to them and cannot take them from you during the division of marital assets. Likewise, any separate assets your spouse owns cannot be awarded to you. Understanding the difference between separate and marital assets can be difficult. The longer you have been married, the more likely it is that you have donated some of your separate assets to the marriage, converting them into marital assets. If you have only been married for a short amount of time, it is likely that you still own some separate assets. A Wheaton, IL, divorce attorney can help you go through the assets you own and determine which are marital assets and which are separate assets.

Types of Separate Assets Married People May Own

Illinois law sets out a few types of assets that are normally considered the separate, nonmarital property of one spouse. Your separate assets may include:

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Divorce After a Long Marriage

 Posted on February 12, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerGetting divorced after many years of marriage can be more complicated than getting divorced after being married for only a short time. There are many reasons why people choose to end their long-term marriages. If you were only staying together in order to raise your children in a two-parent household, you may decide to part ways once your children are grown. Other spouses find that as the years go by, they grow into two very different people and develop irreconcilable differences. You may find that you are no longer on the same page regarding religion, politics, or what you want out of life. One of you may have become more adventurous, wanting to spend your retired years traveling the world, while the other is ready to join a retirement community and spend their days relaxing by the pool. Whatever your reasons for getting divorced after a long marriage, a DuPage County, IL, divorce attorney can help you sort through the unique issues that arise in this type of divorce.

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Tips for Co-Parenting a Teen After Divorce

 Posted on February 06, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerCreating the right parenting plan can be challenging for parents with children of any age. While younger children might not have much say in matters, courts do tend to take the feelings and wishes of mature teenagers a bit more seriously. Teenagers may also respond differently to their parents’ divorce than a young child might. Children that age are often more aware of the problems in their parents’ marriage than younger kids might be, even if the parents have not directly discussed the issues with them. A wide variety of reactions in teenagers are normal. Some may be angry with one parent in particular and eager to live with the other. Others may try in vain to keep their parents together. It is important to include teenagers in the conversation when you are discussing child custody arrangements. An experienced DuPage County, IL, divorce lawyer can offer you additional guidance. 

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Signs Your Spouse is Hiding Assets

 Posted on January 30, 2024 in Division of Assets

IL divorce lawyerMarital property belongs to you and your spouse, not just your spouse. Almost any property either of you acquires during the time that you are married will be considered marital property in Illinois. There are a few exceptions, like proceeds from a personal injury lawsuit, a gift or inheritance meant for just one of you personally, or any premarital property that has not been contributed to the marriage, that can be considered separate property in most cases. However, income earned by either spouse and any asset that income is used to purchase or build is indeed marital property in the state of Illinois. If you are getting divorced and you suspect that your spouse may be hiding assets from you, it is important to consult an experienced Wheaton, IL, family law attorney. An attorney may be able to help you locate any hidden assets your spouse may have.

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Can I Get Divorced While Pregnant?

 Posted on January 27, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerSome states make it a bit of a challenge for pregnant people to get divorced. Fortunately, Illinois is not one of those states. There are no laws in Illinois preventing a pregnant person from pursuing and obtaining a divorce. You are not required to wait until the baby is born to finalize your divorce, but you will likely be required to create a parenting plan. Creating a parenting time schedule and allocating responsibilities for a newborn baby can be a little more complicated than creating a parenting plan for an older child who is more independent. Although Illinois law favors neither the birthing parent nor the non-birthing parent, there may be legitimate reasons that the infant will need to spend more time with the parent who gives birth. If you or your spouse is pregnant and you are planning to get divorced, it is critical to be represented by an experienced Wheaton, IL, divorce lawyer

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Protecting Your Privacy During Divorce

 Posted on January 25, 2024 in Divorce

IL divorce lawyerAlmost anything that happens in the courtroom is a matter of public record. If you are going through a high-asset divorce or one of you is a community leader or public figure, it is best to prepare for your divorce to attract some publicity. High-profile and high-conflict divorce can threaten your privacy in several ways. Anyone can go to the DuPage County, IL, court’s website and look up your case unless it has been sealed. If you suspect that your divorce may become a matter of public or local interest, it is important to work with a Wheaton, IL, divorce attorney who is experienced in high-asset and high-profile divorce. There are steps you and your attorney can take to protect your privacy and your children’s privacy while your case is pending. 

Tips for Keeping Your Divorce Issues Private

There are many reasons that people who are getting divorced may wish to keep their case as private as possible. If your marriage ended for a more dramatic reason, such as infidelity, abuse, or hidden assets, it is more likely to attract attention. Some tips for keeping your personal business private include: 

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What Rights Do Illinois Grandparents Have?

 Posted on January 18, 2024 in Family Law

IL family lawyerLike many other states, Illinois recognizes that grandparents have the right to maintain a relationship with their grandchildren in certain situations. However, this does not mean that you can force your child to give you a certain amount of visitation, or any visitation at all if they have decided that having a relationship with you would not be in their child’s interest. In most cases, parental rights overwhelm grandparents’ rights. Grandparents’ rights generally only come into play in cases where your child is not involved in your grandchild’s life, whether by choice, by court order, or because they have passed away. The purpose of grandparents' rights is to facilitate a relationship between a child and a side of the family they may not otherwise have a relationship with due to the absence of one parent. If you are seeking to assert your rights as a grandparent, it is very important to be represented by an experienced DuPage County, IL, grandparents’ rights lawyer

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