DuPage County family lawyerMany people grow up hearing from family members, teachers, and others that they need a college education in order to have a career, earn a good living, and provide for their future. However, according to a recent study, a college education may also mean a better chance of having a successful marriage—especially for women.

Marriage and Divorce Statistics for College-Educated Couples

Approximately half of first-time marriages in the United States last for about 20 years. A study conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics found that women who have a college degree have an 80 percent chance of staying married beyond that 20-year mark. The researchers used data collected through surveys and interviews to predict the probability of marriage success, much in the same way that researchers use data to predict life expectancy statistics. The data included men and women who were between the ages of 15 to 44 during the years 2006 through 2010.

Differences Between Women and Men

The overall percentage of women’s first marriages lasting at least 20 years was 52 percent. For women who had obtained their bachelor’s degrees, that percentage jumped to 78 percent. Women who had attended college but not acquired their degree had a 49 percent chance of their first marriage lasting at least two decades. Women who had a high school education or less had a 40 percent chance of a 20-year marriage.

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DuPage County divorce mediation attorneyWhen a couple is pursuing a divorce, two sets of lawyers are often used to address the legal issues that must be resolved. Each lawyer will represent their client’s best interests when negotiating a divorce settlement or resolving issues in court. Divorces can be lengthy and expensive, but if a couple can work together to resolve their outstanding legal issues, the process can be made easier and simpler. In these cases, divorcing spouses may want to consider divorce mediation.

What Is Mediation?

During mediation, a third-party mediator works together with the spouses to resolve legal disputes. In regards to divorce, a mediator can help couples end their marriage on their own terms. Couples will discuss the various aspects of their divorce with the mediator present, working to reach a decision regarding issues such as property divisionparenting considerations, and spousal maintenance. If they are able to reach an agreement, their divorce settlement will be sent to the court for final approval.

The mediator does not make decisions for the couple, but instead acts as a facilitator, guiding the conversation and helping them to understand the issues that must be resolved, and working to reach a mutually acceptable agreement. Here are a few reasons couples may choose mediation over traditional litigation:

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Wheaton IL divorce attorneyBefore a divorce, it is a good idea to review and completely understand the entire divorce process, including the ways in which law enforcement could help to protect you should any rules, guidelines, or orders associated with the divorce decree eventually be violated. If that were the case, here are some ways law enforcement, with the help of your lawyer, can assist you to ensure a smooth divorce transition.

3 Ways the Sheriff’s Office or the Police Might Assist with Family Law

  1. Serving the Petition for Divorce—While it is true that your divorce lawyer will do all the preparation for your divorce petition if you are the one filing the petition, someone must deliver it to the other spouse. This cannot be done by just any person; oftentimes, it must be someone who is court-appointed. In many cases, this can be the sheriff from the DuPage County Sheriff’s Office Civil Division.

  2. Serving a Post-Divorce Modification Petition—Whether the other divorced spouse is not keeping up their end of the bargain with regards to certain elements of the divorce decree or you both have agreed that circumstances have changed, such as your finances or something else, you will need to petition the court with your concerns. Depending on what the judge finds when reviewing your lawyer’s prepared petition, they might direct the sheriff’s office to serve a post-divorce modification petition to the other spouse explaining the situation and the next steps.

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DuPage County divorce attorneyDuring the process of divorce, you are likely to experience many changes to your life. With all of the uncertainty that abounds, it is not uncommon for people in the midst of a divorce to try to maintain a level of security and stability by continuing to live in their marital home, even after their divorce is finalized. Staying in the family home, however, is not always quite so simple.

Crucial Considerations Regarding the Family Home

The family home is usually included in the division of marital property, so the question of which spouse, if either, will retain possession of the home will need to be legally resolved. If you are deciding whether you should pursue possession of the home, there are a number of important questions to consider, including:

  • What is the state of the real estate market? If the home market is particularly hot and your home is likely to sell at a substantial profit, your best bet might be to sell and move into a new house—one that better fits your post-divorce situation. If the market is sluggish, you might be better off staying put.

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DuPage County divorce lawyerWhen things are going well in your relationship with your spouse, it is almost impossible to consider that he or she would ever hurt you, let alone be unfaithful. In all honesty, instances of cheating are not often the result of one spouse trying to hurt their partner. Instead, infidelity is usually a manifestation of deep, serious relationship issues, such as poor communication, overall discontent, and feelings of loneliness. An episode of infidelity, however, could be the proverbial last straw that prompts the offended partner to file a petition for divorce, sometimes with the expectation that the unfaithfulness will afford the filer additional benefits during the process of divorce.

Legal Considerations Regarding Infidelity in Divorce

If your spouse has cheated on you, it is entirely understandable for you to feel angry and betrayed and to hope to hold your spouse responsible for his or her hurtful choices, especially if you feel that his or her actions are responsible for destroying your marriage. However, unless you have a valid prenuptial agreement or postnuptial agreement that includes an unfaithfulness clause, you will probably not receive any extra considerations under Illinois law.

Unlike some other states, Illinois no longer allows for infidelity to be listed as grounds for divorce. In fact, all fault-related grounds were eliminated in 2016, and the only acceptable grounds for divorce is a marital breakdown due to irreconcilable differences between the spouses, no matter what else might have happened during the course of the marriage. Illinois law also expressly forbids the court from taking “marital misconduct” including infidelity into account when deciding on spousal support or allocating marital property. However, it is possible that you could recover marital funds that your spouse spent on an affair by filing a claim of dissipation.

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