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Hillside, IL 60162

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Recent Blog Posts

Does Remarriage Stop Alimony Payments in Illinois?

 Posted on October 31, 2022 in Divorce

Oak Park Spousal Support AttorneyAlimony can be one of the most frustrating issues to deal with in a divorce. Not only are both parties generally unhappy by the payments themselves (the payer usually feels they are too much, while the recipient usually argues they are insufficient), but the payments often go on long after a marriage has ended. Understandably, former spouses are often very sensitive to things that could influence or terminate the payments. 

Whether you are making or receiving alimony payments in Illinois, it is important to understand the circumstances that could trigger a modification or halt in payments. Knowing the law is especially important because failing to follow it, even accidentally, could lead to court sanctions. Read on to learn more, and then contact an Illinois alimony attorney today. 

Spousal Maintenance in Illinois  

Alimony is formally known as “spousal maintenance” in Illinois, although you may also hear it called “spousal support” as well. Although spousal maintenance is ordered less often than it used to be, it is still a common feature of divorce, especially when one spouse earns more than the other, or when one spouse gave up career opportunities to care for children. 

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How Can I Recover Unpaid Child Support in Illinois? 

 Posted on October 14, 2022 in Family Law

Oak Park Child Support LawyerChild support is one of the issues Illinois parents most frequently disagree about after their divorce. Even if you were never married to your child’s other parent, child support is an issue that is likely to come up repeatedly until your child reaches legal adulthood–and, if they attend college, perhaps even after that. 

If you are receiving child support payments from your child’s other parent and the payments stop, even for a short time, you may be unable to provide for your child. Rather than trying to resolve the problem yourself, it is recommended that you get help from an experienced Illinois child support attorney, who can work with you to get payments back on track as soon as possible. Read on to learn more about your options. 

What You Should Do When Child Support Is Not Getting Paid

The first thing you need to do is make sure you have a copy of a formal order from a court about child support. Some parents, especially unmarried parents who share only one very young child, make an informal agreement about visitation and child support. While this may work for a while, if either parent reneges on the agreement, the other parent has no legal recourse if there’s no existing court order. 

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Avoid These Mistakes During Your Illinois Custody Dispute

 Posted on September 30, 2022 in Divorce

hillside child custody lawyerWhile disputes over parenting time and parental responsibilities are commonly some of the most difficult aspects of a divorce to resolve, some parents go above and beyond normal levels of conflict and try to prevent the other parent from having any access to the children at all. Sometimes, this behavior is based on legitimate concerns about a spouse’s parental fitness because of a true history of abuse, neglect or concerning personal behavior. Most of the time, however, high-conflict custody disputes are just an extension of parental interpersonal conflict in which one parent has, or both parents have, decided to use the children to try to get revenge. 

If you are getting divorced or are seeking a child custody modification in Illinois, and your situation has already become very tense, here are three major mistakes to avoid as your case plays out in court. 

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Do I Still Need an Attorney if We Divorce Using a Mediator? 

 Posted on September 13, 2022 in Divorce

Oak Park Divorce LawyerMediation as a means of resolving important issues in a divorce is an increasingly popular option. Indeed, judges these days often order divorcing couples to attempt to resolve their issues with the help of a mediator before allowing a case to proceed to litigation. In the vast majority of cases, a couple committed to resolving their divorce peacefully can resolve all of their issues in mediation, reach a satisfactory divorce settlement and move forward with their lives. 

However, despite being an inherently less adversarial process than a litigated divorce, mediation is not without its risks. One risk is that sometimes spouses who aim to reach a resolution in mediation may be willing to give up certain property and parental rights, resulting in a seriously negative outcome for them in the future. Having an attorney can help you avoid these possible errors and other potential pitfalls of mediation. 

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How Do I Know if I Will Have to Pay Child Support After My Illinois Divorce? 

 Posted on August 29, 2022 in Family Law

Oak Park Family Law AttorneyIf you are getting divorced in Illinois, and have a child under the age of 18 (and in some cases, even a child older than 18), you may be wondering whether you will need to pay child support. When you have your child’s best interests at heart, it is important to know what to expect as you prepare yourself emotionally and financially for life after a divorce. To learn more about how child support works in Illinois, read on, and then contact a highly-skilled divorce attorney for advice. 

Who Pays Child Support? 

Child support payments in Illinois are calculated using the “income shares” model. This model uses both parents’ net incomes, and, along with the amount of time each child spends with each parent, determines whether one parent needs to pay child support. Child support payments are meant to cover a child’s everyday expenses like clothing, food and housing, as well as the costs of education, healthcare and other wellness needs. While the parent with the majority of parenting time is usually the parent to receive child support payments, this is not always the case. 

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Are Engagement Rings Supposed to Be Returned in a Divorce?

 Posted on July 27, 2022 in Divorce

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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What is the Difference Between “Parental Responsibilities” and “Parenting Time” in Illinois? 

 Posted on July 22, 2022 in Family Law

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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Can My Ex Use Social Media Posts Against Me In Our Divorce?

 Posted on June 29, 2022 in Divorce

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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Four Tips for Protecting Yourself During Divorce When Your Spouse Has a Personality Disorder 

 Posted on June 10, 2022 in Divorce

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. 

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Do Fathers Face Bias in Illinois Divorce Courts? 

 Posted on May 24, 2022 in Divorce

Oak Park Parenting Time LawyerFor most of American legal history, mothers held a decided upper hand in a divorce regarding child custody arrangements. According to the “tender years” legal theory, young children needed their mothers more than their fathers. Millions of fathers lost out on crucial years with their children, making it hard to ever recover a fully developed relationship when the children became older.

Today, Illinois family law takes care not to favor one parent over the other–in theory, at least. Although judges are charged with applying the law regardless of their personal beliefs, personal values and biases can still impact a judge’s perception of whether a father is fit to share equal parenting rights with a mother. A father may have to enlist the help of a skilled divorce attorney to help him fight to protect his relationship with his children in a parenting agreement. 

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