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High Point Plaza, 4415 West Harrison Street, Suite 213
Hillside, IL 60162

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Oak Park family law attorney prenuptial agreement

The idea of signing a prenuptial agreement (prenup) is often thought to be a taboo topic to bring up with your spouse or loved one. Some people may think that wanting a prenup is a sign that you do not trust your soon-to-be spouse, or that you do not see the marriage lasting. While these perceived negatives do exist with regard to prenups, many millennials are still deciding to enter into this legal document. In the past, many couples got married right out of high school or college, with little or no savings or income, and also filing for divorce was considered giving up too easily. But times have changed, and so have views regarding marriage. With many couples waiting to get married until they are in their 30s or even 40s, such individuals often have many more assets to bring into a marriage, making them want to consider entering into a prenuptial agreement.

A Financial Gap

The most common reason that you may have heard of prenuptial agreements is that many celebrities enter into them to protect their assets in case of divorce. While not everyone is a rich and famous celebrity, it is fairly common for individuals to come into a marriage with very different financial situations. One spouse may have a large sum of money in savings, or perhaps he or she received an inheritance from a family member, while his or her partner is not as financially fortunate. Upon getting married without a prenup addressing this kind of a large asset difference, oftentimes most assets will then be considered marital. This could mean that your spouse might be able to receive a portion of your money in the event a divorce occurs. However, if you address this asset gap before the marriage in a prenup, your savings are more likely to be protected and reserved for you.

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Oak Park divorce attorney asset division

Every step of the divorce process is difficult. First, you make the decision to get a divorce that will forever alter your life, and then you must watch your life be divided up by two legal teams and your former spouse. Typically, children and finances are the subjects that bring up the most deliberation between soon-to-be exes. It can be difficult to watch everything in your life become a number to be split, but unfortunately, this is inevitable for those filing for divorce. Some couples may keep separate bank accounts throughout their marriage for their own sense of security and to be prepared for divorce if the relationship does not last. This decision is often made without consulting legal professionals or having a proper understanding of Illinois’ property division laws. Before you and your spouse decide to stay financially separate, you should recognize how this will affect your divorce.

Why Have Different Accounts?

Studies have shown that financial difficulties are one of the main reasons for divorce. This may mean that couples argue over their income disparities, their levels of control over accounts, or even their spending habits. Some couples look to avoid these arguments by keeping their accounts separate. This can promote autonomy in their relationship and avoid disputes regarding their spending since they are using the money that they earned themselves. Having a stronger relationship is not the only reason for separate bank accounts. In a similar way to prenuptial agreements, some couples may try to protect their earnings in the event they decide to legally terminate their marriage. 

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Oak Park family law attorney for step-parent adoptionIt is common for divorced or unmarried parents to eventually move on from their previous partner and seek out a romantic relationship with someone new. When starting a new relationship, parents will need to consider the manner in which their children will relate to their new partner. Relationships between step-parents, and step-children relationships, can be tricky to navigate, especially in the beginning stages. However, by using the tips below, a step-parent can build a healthy and loving relationship with their step-child. And over time, a step-parent may decide that legal adoption is a further step they want to take.

The Dos and Don’ts of Step-Parenting

There is no tried-and-true playbook on how to parent, whether you are a biological parent or a step-parent. However, boundaries are often one of the main issues that step-children have with their parent’s new partner. Step-kids can often feel as if their step-parent is trying to replace their biological parent, and boundary issues can arise when a step-parent tries to discipline their step-child. 

It is important to have a conversation with your partner about what the parenting dynamics in your relationship are going to be. Some parents may expect their new spouse to take on a more involved parental role, while others may wish to avoid the issues that can arise regarding boundaries and discipline. There is no right or wrong approach, but discussing expectations can help eliminate any gray areas that may arise.

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Hillside, IL empty nest divorce lawyerIt is a fact of life that children will eventually move on and leave the house when they reach a certain age. For many families, this occurs when kids head off to college, while for others, children may remain living at home for longer. Regardless of when the kids leave, it is not uncommon for parents to feel a sense of loss and uncertainty when their children move out. 

For many couples with children, their kids can become their whole life. Mornings may involve serving breakfast and packing lunches before kids head off to school, weeknights may be focused on helping with homework, and weekends can be all about sports tournaments and other activities. However, what may seem like chores and responsibilities can be sorely missed when they disappear from your everyday schedule. When these tasks vanish, and you and your spouse have more time alone with each other, it can be beneficial for your relationship, or it may expose unresolved conflicts and difficulties, which might result in a divorce.

When Is Divorce Necessary After Children Leave the Nest?

It is common for couples to experience a strong sense of loss when their children move out. For some parents, “empty nest syndrome” can make them realize that the only thing keeping their marriage together was their kids. If you are wondering whether divorce might be your best option after your children have left home, you may want to consider the following:

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Oak Park, IL child custody attorney for parental relocationA parent’s worst fear is waking up one day and finding their child is gone. The only way that most parents can foresee this happening is if their child is abducted by a stranger. However, kidnapping can also be done by someone you know, including your child’s other parent. If one parent decides to move to a new location with the child without the other parent’s permission, they are kidnapping their own child. In some cases, parents may choose to move with their child without realizing that this could pose an issue, but it is important to understand that a distinct legal process must be followed in parental relocation cases.

What Is Parental Relocation?

The state of Illinois does not restrict parents from moving down the street or across town with their child, and many recently divorced parents will move from their previous residence to pursue a fresh start as a single parent. However, if a parent who has primary custody of their child, or who shares custody with the other parent, plans to move a certain distance, they must receive permission from either the other parent or from the court to ensure that both parents can continue to share in parental responsibilities and parenting time. The following situations are considered parental relocation under Illinois law:

  1. The child lives in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry or Will County, and their new home will be more than 25 miles from their previous residence;
  2. The child lives in a different county than those listed above, and their new home will be more than 50 miles from their previous residence; or,
  3. The parent is moving outside of Illinois, and their new residence will be more than 25 miles from their previous residence.

How Can a Relocation Get Legally Approved?

There are multiple ways to have a parental relocation request approved, not all of which require going to court. Every intended relocation that falls into one of the 3 categories described above requires that an official request be filed with the court and sent to the child’s other parent. This notice must be provided 60 days before the intended move, and it should include the relocation date, the new address, and the intended length of stay if the move will not be permanent. 

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