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Law Office of Vincent C. Machroli, P.C.
High Point Plaza, 4415 West Harrison Street, Suite 213, Hillside, IL 60162
High Point Plaza, 4415 West Harrison Street, Suite 213
Hillside, IL 60162

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Oak Park Guardianship LawyerWhile the aging process is never easy for the person going through it, watching someone you love as they age can be just as difficult. This is especially true when a parent’s mental or physical health begins to decline rapidly but the parent is resisting the help they need. An elderly person’s situation may become dire before family members realize something is really wrong. In cases like this, even if your loved one has a solid estate plan and powers of attorney in place, you may need something more: legal guardianship. If you live in Illinois and any of the following situations apply to you and your parent, you may want to consider petitioning a court for guardianship. 

Your Parent Will Not Consent to a Power of Attorney

The term “power of attorney” refers to the legal authority for one person to act on behalf of someone else. If your parent is clearly in need of help–for example, if she can no longer pay her own bills–someone will need to step in with the authority to make financial transactions on her behalf. But if a parent will not consent to give that power, you may need to petition for guardianship instead. Whereas a power of attorney is assigned voluntarily by the person whom the power of attorney represents, a guardian is assigned by a court. 

Major Financial Decisions Need to Be Made

Sometimes having a power of attorney is not enough. Because the authority of someone with power of attorney is often limited in scope, major financial decisions may need help from a guardian. For example, if a parent’s property needs to be sold, a court may need to appoint a guardian to manage these complex financial transactions. 

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Oak Park Divorce AttorneyAn engagement ring is an object with a deep sentimental feeling attached to it, but it is also often the most valuable asset a young couple owns at the beginning of their marriage. When a marriage falls apart and a couple files for divorce, it is understandable that both spouses may have strong feelings as to the entitlement of the ring; the spouse who gifted the ring may feel as though a promise has been broken, while the spouse who wears the ring may feel as though gifts cannot be taken back. 

When a valuable engagement ring is at stake, what happens if the engagement is broken off? And, if a couple is married, how do they know whether the ring should be considered marital or personal property? Read on to find the answers to these questions and then contact an Oak Park divorce attorney for help with your case. 

When Does an Engagement Ring Have to Be Given Back? 

Engagement rings are different from other gifts that lovers give to each other; generally speaking, even a very expensive gift does not need to be returned if an engagement is called off. An engagement ring, however, is a gift given in exchange for the promise of marriage. If an engagement is called off, whether the ring must be returned depends on who ended the relationship. 

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Oak Park Family Law AttorneyParents of minor children who are getting divorced in Illinois (as well as parents who were never married but who share a minor child) will suddenly find that their parenting abilities and habits are under a magnifying glass. Things that seemed fairly mundane before, such as spending time with the children, making important decisions or deciding to move for a new job, are now under tight restrictions detailed at great length in a legally-binding parenting agreement. 

To make sure that you give your children the best chance of success after a divorce, and to ensure you do not run afoul of Illinois family law, it is important to understand the difference between the two primary categories contained in a parenting plan: “Parental responsibilities” (formerly known as “custody”) and “parenting time” (formerly known as “visitation”). 

What are “Parental Responsibilities”? 

“Parental responsibilities” is a term that refers to the rights to make important decisions on behalf of a minor child. Parents often split parental responsibilities, although sometimes one parent may have all of the parental responsibilities allocated to them. If parents can collaborate when creating their parenting agreement, this split can be customized in any number of creative ways. 

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Oak Park Divorce AttorneyEven as the negative consequences of using social media become increasingly clear, nearly everyone has a social media account on at least one platform. And while social media has been shown to have a negative effect on marriage, perhaps the effects of inappropriate social media use during an Illinois divorce can be even worse. 

In fact, inappropriate social media behavior is so prevalent and so useful when it comes to arguing a divorce case that the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers states that 81 percent of divorce attorneys say that social media has helped a divorcing spouse search for evidence of bad behavior. Unfortunately for the spouse who posted it, this evidence can later end up in court. If you are getting divorced in Illinois, it is essential to understand harmful social media behaviors to avoid in order to secure the best possible outcome. 

Venting About Your Divorce

Many people use social media as an outlet for venting their frustrations and pain during divorce. After a frustrating court hearing or a rude email from a spouse, it can be tempting to get online and seek sympathy from friends and family. But even though you may not be “friends” with your spouse on social media, it is not hard to access posts through friends or burner accounts. Nasty posts could trigger retaliation from a spouse and even end up in the hands of your children. 

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Oak Park Divorce LawyerMost Illinois couples start their marriage with high hopes for a lifetime of love and happiness. Unfortunately, certain characteristics and behaviors often do not come out until spouses are married and comfortable letting their guard down. This makes certain personality disorders very hard to detect before marriage and devastating to endure once they begin. 

Borderline personality disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, histrionic personality disorder and psychopathy affect a relatively small percentage of the population yet are common enough that extensive research has been done about how these personality disorders affect the ability to form and sustain healthy relationships. If you are in a relationship with someone who suffers from a personality disorder, you likely already have experience with how unpredictable and contentious conflict with your spouse can become; unfortunately, getting divorced is likely to be even more challenging. The good news is that you are not the first person to go through this experience and there are things you can do to protect yourself. 

Minimize Contact

One of the hallmarks of common personality disorders is the need to maintain contact, even when the contact is hostile and embittered. If your spouse bullies you, gaslights you or contacts you repeatedly and inappropriately, cut off contact as much as possible. Even if they appear contrite and apologetic, do not get taken into discussions about reviving the relationship or negotiating the divorce. Allow your attorney to handle the conversations for you. 

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