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Hillside, IL 60162

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Recent Blog Posts

When Is a QDRO Used in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on April 14, 2023 in Divorce

Oak Park Divorce LawyerGetting a divorce can be a tough process, including emotionally and financially. Even after the  divorce is finalized, sometimes certain financial issues can linger for years if they were not addressed properly during the divorce process. One aspect of the financial side of a divorce which spouses in Illinois should be aware of is called a QDRO, which many times is used to divide retirement benefits. By understanding when a QDRO may be used and how it can affect your financial future, you can make sure you are taking the correct steps to protect your interests, and avoid potential complications down the line.

What Is a QDRO?

A QDRO, or Qualified Domestic Relations Order, is a court order that allows for the division of certain types of marital property. These types of orders will typically be used when dividing retirement benefits, including certain types of retirement savings accounts and pension benefits  which a person is eligible to receive after their retirement. Without a QDRO, a division of retirement benefits might result in unnecessary taxes, penalties, or other complications.

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How to  Deal With “Parental Alienation” in Divorce and Child Custody Cases

 Posted on March 22, 2023 in Family Law

Oak Park Child Custody LawyerWhen parents get a divorce, it can sometimes be difficult for them to remember that their children’s best interests should be their top priority. Parents can become focused on their own desires, and they may even attempt to use their children against each other. In some cases, one parent may attempt to manipulate their children into taking their side in disputes, or even cutting off contact with the other parent. This is known as “parental alienation”, and it can have damaging psychological effects on a child. If you believe that your ex is engaging in “parental alienation”, you will want to make sure you address this issue appropriately during legal proceedings related to child custody.

Understanding “Parental Alienation”

“Parental alienation”  is defined as attempts by one parent to cause their children to feel negatively about the other parent, or other forms of interference in their parent/child relationship. This may involve a variety of different actions, including speaking negatively about the other parent in the children's presence, asking children to monitor the other parent's activities or relationships, encouraging children to take sides in disputes, claiming that the other parent does not love the children or want to spend time with them, or refusing to allow the children to see or communicate with the other parent. This kind of behavior can be very harmful, because it creates an environment where the child feels that they must choose between their parents. The result is often increased stress for all parties involved, and long-lasting emotional damage for the child.

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What Happens if My Spouse Refuses to Sign Divorce Papers in Illinois?

 Posted on March 09, 2023 in Divorce

Hillside Divorce LawyerIf you have decided to get a divorce, the process will go more smoothly if you and your spouse can both agree on the terms of the divorce and sign the necessary paperwork. However, there may be situations in which your spouse refuses to sign divorce papers, or participate in the divorce process. There could be a number of reasons for this refusal, such as:

  • They are hoping you will change your mind about getting a divorce;

  • They want to delay the process and cause more difficulty for you;

  • They are trying to get revenge because they blame you for breaking up your family;

  • They have legitimate concerns about the divorce agreement.

If your spouse is purposely delaying the process or refusing to cooperate, it is important to understand that there are still options available to you. By taking the correct steps, you can force your spouse to be involved in the divorce proceedings, and if they still refuse to cooperate, the court may rule in your favor on many issues. Once your divorce has been finalized, you can leave the relationship and move forward successfully.

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Would I Have to Move Out of My Home During a Divorce?

 Posted on February 27, 2023 in Divorce

Hillside Divorce LawyerDuring a divorce, one can expect their life to change in many ways. As you end your legal relationship with your spouse, you will need to make adjustments to your spending to ensure that you will be able to cover all of your expenses, and your daily routines will most likely change as well. However, you will usually want to make these changes on your own terms, and you may be looking to ease into your new life gradually. This may be difficult if you will be required to find new living arrangements, and you may be concerned that you could be forced to move out of your home while you are still in the midst of the divorce process. By understanding the divorce laws in Illinois, and the ways Illinois courts handle these situations, you can protect yourself against the unexpected, and make plans for how matters will be handled as you dissolve your marriage.

Equitable Distribution Laws

Illinois law states that marital property should be divided equitably, but not necessarily equally, between you and your spouse during your divorce, and this could include your home and other assets of significant value. As you negotiate a property division settlement with your spouse, you can address who will retain ownership of the home post-divorce. Depending on the overall circumstances, the financial resources available to each party, and each party’s ongoing needs, either spouse may be awarded sole ownership of the home, while the other party may receive other assets that have a similar value to the equity in your home. Alternatively, the parties may decide to sell the home during the divorce process, which will require both spouses to find new living arrangements. If the parties cannot reach an agreement on their own, then the judge in your case may decide who will own the home, or whether it should be sold.

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Mistakes to Avoid When Enforcing an Illinois Family Court Order

 Posted on February 20, 2023 in Family Law

Hillside Child Custody AttorneyWhen a married couple gets divorced,  as well as in other types of family law cases, court orders will be put in place that will detail how certain issues will be handled going forward. While parents are expected to follow the terms of these orders, situations may arise in which one parent may believe that the other has failed to meet their obligations. These disputes may be related to child custody, child support, or other issues. Understanding the best ways to address these issues is important, and parents who approach these matters the wrong way could face a number of additional legal concerns. If you are in this situation, here are some mistakes that you should be sure to avoid:

Withholding Child Support

In some cases, a parent may violate child custody orders; for example, they may fail to pick up or drop off children when required, or they may refuse to allow the other parent to communicate with the children. These actions can cause a great deal of difficulty, especially for a "non-custodial" parent who spends less time with their children than they would prefer. The inability to spend time with children or communicate with them about what is going on in their lives can have a significant impact on parent/child relationships, and a parent who is being denied parenting time may believe that they need to take action to compel the other parent to abide by a child custody order.

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If My Spouse Does Not Work, Will I Have to Pay Alimony in Our Divorce?

 Posted on January 20, 2023 in Divorce

Hillside Divorce AttorneyIf you and your spouse have decided to split up and get a divorce, both of you will need to address numerous financial issues related to the ending of your marriage. Many of these issues  have to do with the division of marital property, and determining how to fairly and equitably divide the assets you both own can often be a complicated process. However, it is also important to ensure that both of you will have the financial resources that will allow you to meet your needs going forward, and so issues related to the income that each of you earns may need to be addressed. If your spouse is not currently working, they may request that you provide them with ongoing support payments. By understanding the laws that affect alimony (also known as spousal maintenance, or spousal support), you can work to find solutions that will protect your financial interests.

Spousal Support Laws in Illinois 

In Illinois, spousal maintenance is governed by Section 504 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA). The IMDMA states that either spouse can request maintenance from the other spouse during a divorce. When determining whether spousal support will be appropriate, a family court judge will consider such factors as each party’s current income and earning capacity, the standard of living during the marriage, the age and health of each party, the level of education attained by each party during the marriage, and the duration of the marriage. Other significant factors include contributions made by the spouse who is seeking support to the other spouse's career, as well as the amount of time the spouse seeking support will need to be able to support themselves.

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Read Our Top 10 Family Law Blogs for 2022

 Posted on January 16, 2023 in Family Law

Hillside Divorce LawyerHere at Law Office of Vincent C. Machroli, P.C., we work hard every day to stay on top of all the latest developments in Illinois family law, and to ensure that our clients are accurately informed about the legal issues that may affect them. We regularly publish blogs on topics related to divorce, child custody, child support, and other legal issues that affect families, providing helpful information about Illinois law and the concerns that affect people involved in family court cases. We want to highlight the blogs that were most popular with our readers in 2022:

  1. Will a Marriage Counselor Ever Suggest Divorce? - This blog looks at the approach that counselors will often take with couples who are experiencing marital problems, while also discussing how mediation can be a good solution for spouses who wish to proceed with the divorce process.

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Can a Parent Move to Another State After an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on December 29, 2022 in Family Law

Oak Park Divorce LawyerIn the years after a divorce, it may be necessary for one or both parents to move, and, in some cases, a person may plan to actually move to another state. This can bring about problems,  since a move may affect subjects such as parental responsibilities (also known as child custody) and parenting time. Oftentimes, both parents want to continue to be involved in their children's lives, but a move that puts significant distance between parents' residences may affect the parents’ ability to do so. If you are a parent considering a move out of Illinois after your divorce, or if you are concerned about how your ex-spouse's plans to relocate out-of-state will affect your relationship with your children, it is important to understand how Illinois laws will affect that subject. 

Parental Relocation in Illinois 

In the state of Illinois, a planned relocation by a parent must typically be approved by the court if it affects the custodial rights of one or both parents. In cases where a parent who plans to move has the majority of the parenting time with their children, or even when parents share equal parenting time, an out-of-state move will usually be considered a relocation. However, a parent may be able to move to a different state without seeking court approval if their new residence will be no more than 25 miles away from their current residence.

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What Are the Requirements for a Parenting Plan in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on December 19, 2022 in Family Law

Oak Park Child Custody LawyerWhen parents get divorced, some of the most important decisions are related to the creation of an effective parenting plan that provides for the best interests of the children, while also meeting the needs of both parents, plus fulfilling all the requirements of Illinois law. During the divorce process, it is important to work with a skilled family law attorney who can ensure that all  subjects regarding parental responsibilities and parenting time will be properly addressed in a parenting plan. 

What Is a Parenting Plan?

A parenting plan is a legal agreement between divorcing parents that will be part of their final divorce decree. The plan will outline the parents' respective rights and responsibilities regarding their parenting duties, and also their relationships with their children. A parenting plan should include provisions for decision-making authority, parenting time or visitation, holidays, vacations, transportation arrangements, communication between parents and children, and other subjects related to the child's welfare. 

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Contested Divorce: When Spouses Cannot Agree

 Posted on November 21, 2022 in Divorce

dupage county divorce lawyerJust as there are a  variety of types of marriages, there are numerous different types of divorces. Some divorces are a result of one spouse having an affair, while other divorces occur  because the couple simply grows apart. The end of their marriage comes as a total shock to some spouses, while others have known it was coming for years. If you are in a situation where you and your spouse are not on the same page about how you want to end your marriage and move on with your life, you may be facing a contested divorce. Contested divorces are much more complicated and time-consuming than uncontested divorces, and a person going through this type of divorce is strongly encouraged to hire an experienced family law attorney.

Contested Divorce vs. Uncontested Divorce

Couples going thru a divorce who agree on subjects such as property and debt division, the allocation of parental responsibilities, parenting time, child support and spousal maintenance generally do not have to go through numerous court hearings or extensive legal negotiations in order to end their marriage. The court’s main purpose when it comes to divorce is to make rulings about issues on which couples disagree. There is usually no need for far-reaching court involvement when couples are willing to cooperate and compromise.

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