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Hillside, IL 60162

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Recent Blog Posts

How Can I Make Sure My Prenuptial Agreement Will Be Enforceable?

 Posted on August 09, 2021 in Family Law

Hillside IL prenuptial agreement attorneyThere are many reasons why couples who are planning to get married may wish to enter into a prenuptial agreement. A “prenup” can protect the ownership of assets that each party will be bringing into the marriage, ensuring that a person will continue to own certain assets if they end up getting a divorce. This can be especially beneficial for business owners, people with large incomes or family wealth, or those who have children from a previous relationship. However, spouses will need to meet certain requirements to ensure that their prenup will be valid. If an agreement is not drafted correctly, and one spouse challenges the agreement during the divorce process, some or all of the terms of the agreement may be found to be unenforceable.

Reasons a Prenup May Be Unenforceable

Most of the time, a prenuptial agreement may only be challenged based on the grounds that it was either not signed voluntarily, or that it was unconscionable.

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What Should I Expect During the Discovery Process in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on July 22, 2021 in Divorce

Hillside IL divorce lawyerIf you and your spouse have not been happy for a long time, getting a divorce may be able to give you the relief you need. However, getting a divorce is not a walk in the park. Resolving matters like the division of marital property can be complicated, and if your spouse is reluctant to provide you information about his or her finances, you may need to take advantage of the discovery process to get the information you need to make well-informed decisions.

What Is the Discovery Process?

The discovery process allows divorcing couples to gather important information and documents, usually related to each other’s finances, after the filing of the initial divorce petition. Sometimes, spouses willingly share such information, but it is often necessary to use a more formal legal process to better ensure all relevant information is exchanged. Through discovery, each spouse gets access to the same information when coming to decisions regarding their divorce. If you and your divorce attorney gather this information, you may have an easier time reaching a fair agreement.

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Can I Change My Parenting Plan After My Divorce Has Been Finalized?

 Posted on July 08, 2021 in Allocation of Parental Responsibilities

Oak Park IL family law attorneyDuring the Illinois divorce process, parents have an important responsibility to fill out a “Parenting Plan” document which states the details of parenting time and the allocation of parental responsibilities between the two parties. Parents may cooperate in the creation of a single parenting plan, or each parent may feel the need to draw up their own plan during the divorce case. With either approach, once the divorce is finalized and a plan is approved by the judge, it becomes legally binding. However, if your circumstances change after the divorce, you may be able to modify the parenting plan.

When It May Be Necessary to Modify a Parenting Plan

A parenting plan is not necessarily set in stone. If you, your former spouse, or your children go through major life changes after your divorce, a judge may agree to modify the plan. Here are a few situations that may warrant a modification.

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Why You Should Not Speak Poorly About Your Ex to Your Kids

 Posted on June 28, 2021 in Family Law

Oak Park family law attorneyIf you are getting a divorce from your spouse, you may have ill feelings toward that person. Your anger and resentment may be so intense that you want to bad-mouth your ex-spouse every chance you get. However, doing so will likely only serve to perpetuate a hostile situation. It can also be damaging to your children, and it can even affect the outcome of the allocation of parenting time and parental responsibilities.

The Downsides of Bad-Mouthing Your Former Spouse

Speaking poorly about your former spouse can be harmful to both you and your kids. Keep in mind that your ex-spouse is still your children’s parent. Just because you no longer get along with your ex, that does not mean he or she is any less of a parent to your children. Your children still love your ex-spouse and look up to him or her. It will be hurtful for your kids to hear you speaking poorly about someone they care about, and they may feel forced to take sides. Being caught in the middle like this is a lose-lose situation for a child, who will likely feel guilt and shame because they are unable to make both parents happy. Children may even feel that they are doing something wrong themselves, which can lead them to develop self-esteem issues.

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When is a Legal Guardian Appointed in Illinois?

 Posted on June 07, 2021 in Guardianships

Oak Park adult guardianship lawyerObtaining guardianship over an adult can be a sensitive topic in many situations. When you ask a court for guardianship over a person, you are essentially asking them to grant you decision-making authority over important aspects of that person’s life. Sometimes, guardianship authority will be limited to certain purposes, such as managing a person’s financial affairs. However, other times, guardianship authority will include decision-making power in nearly all areas, especially when an individual is incapacitated to the point where they are not able to make decisions about their own affairs.

Common Situations that Warrant Guardianship

There are various reasons why a person might have a guardian appointed for them. According to Illinois law, an adult can only have a guardian appointed to manage their affairs if they are disabled and unable to “make or communicate responsible decisions” about their personal affairs. In Illinois, guardians can be appointed in cases of mental or physical disability, as well as in cases of gambling or addiction which prevent a person from effectively managing their affairs.

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Is it Possible to Adopt My Stepchild in Illinois?

 Posted on May 10, 2021 in Family Law

Oak Park IL family law attorneyIn today's world, there is no such thing as an "average" family. Years ago, the traditional mother, father, and baby set-up was the norm, but nowadays, things are much different. According to the 2018 American Community Survey conducted by the Census Bureau, more than 6 million people lived in a household with a child who is not biologically related to them, including in a stepfamily. One reason for this is that many people who get divorced end up getting remarried, which often creates blended families, bringing children from prior marriages together in one household.

One question that may go through any stepparent's mind is whether they can adopt their stepchild. While there is definitely a legal way to adopt a stepchild, it can be a somewhat complicated process. There are many details pertaining to the adoption process that you will have to understand and address before you are able to adopt your stepchild.

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How Can My Spouse’s Financial Infidelity Affect Our Divorce?

 Posted on April 29, 2021 in Divorce

Oak Park IL divorce lawyerIf one were to ask, say, 10 married couples if they have ever hidden any type of financial information from each other, how many do you think would say that they have? Chances are, there would be a good number of them that answer, “yes.” According to a new survey from CreditCards.com, around 40 percent of respondents of all ages who are currently in serious relationships admitted that they were actively hiding a credit card, checking or savings account from their partner. Financial infidelity is common in marriages, but it can come back to haunt the guilty party during their divorce. A partner who commits financial infidelity during a marriage is also likely to affect the financial aspects of the divorce.

What is Financial Infidelity?

There are various definitions of “financial infidelity,” but most commonly it refers to any type of lying or deception about money matters between romantic partners who have combined finances. Many actions and behaviors can qualify as financial infidelity, and all of them can have a significant impact on their partner’s financial situation. Examples of actions that can be considered financial infidelity include:

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What Factors Can Affect the Cost of My Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on April 19, 2021 in Divorce

Oak Park IL divorce attorneyOne of the first questions most people have when they find themselves beginning to look into the possibility of divorce is how much the divorce process will cost. One of the well-known facts about divorce is that it is not cheap. According to a recent article in USA Today, the average cost of a divorce ranges from $8,400 to $17,500, when all factors are accounted for, so clearly, there is no one price tag that you can put on every divorce. The actual final cost of your divorce will end up being based on a variety of factors, with one of the biggest factors being the cost of your divorce lawyer.

Factors Affecting the Cost of a Divorce

One of the basic factors that affects the cost of a divorce is simply where you live. In states and cities with higher costs of living, the cost of getting a divorce is likely to be higher. In states that have a lower-than-average cost of living, the cost of getting a divorce is also likely to be lower. Some of the other factors that can affect the cost of your divorce include:

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What Are the Most Common Concerns in a “Gray Divorce”?

 Posted on March 30, 2021 in Divorce

Oak Park, IL family law attorney gray divorce

A “gray divorce” is a term used when referring to a couple that gets divorced later in life, typically when they are over the age of 50. Perhaps they were waiting until their children were grown and out of the house, or an extramarital affair caused the split. Regardless of the reasons for the marriage ending, these older spouses will have to make some important decisions regarding their divorce settlement in order to move forward into the next chapter of their lives. One of the major issues with a “gray divorce” is that there can be more assets, and larger assets, to divide, which can cause conflict between spouses. Certain high-value assets can be more problematic when trying to determine which of these assets are marital property and subject to division. Also, often there is the emotional aspect of becoming single again after perhaps decades of marriage to deal with. 

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Tips for Helping Children Cope After an Illinois Divorce

 Posted on March 17, 2021 in Divorce

Oak Park family law attorney divorce

The end of a marriage can occur for many reasons, including infidelity, abuse, addiction and financial problems. But sometimes, spouses may put off filing for divorce, especially if they have children. Parents often worry about the emotional impact their split can have on their kids in the immediate aftermath of a divorce as well as in the future. However, studies have shown that children can be more traumatized when parents who have a toxic relationship stay together. Constant exposure to arguments is not healthy and may prevent children from having positive attitudes or relationships themselves. Fortunately, there are ways for parents to minimize the negative effect of a divorce on their children so all involved can live “happily ever after.”     

Alleviating the Stress of the Situation 

How children react to a divorce typically depends on their age, personality and the circumstances of the breakup. The initial reaction may be disbelief, anger, sadness, anxiety or worry. During a divorce, kids can also learn valuable tools for dealing with stress, and as a result many children eventually become more flexible, tolerant adults. Navigating this major life change often depends on how the parents handle the process. 

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