Family Law & Divorce
Child Related Issues
Preguntas Legales Frecuentes
New 2017 Illinois Law Expands Eligibility to Seal Records for Most Offenses
In previous years, only a few select felony offenses could be sealed in Illinois. In the event that an offender wanted to seal an offense that was not eligible under the law, they would have to petition the governor for a pardon. The process of petitioning the governor for a pardon took a great deal of work, and the pardon was only granted in rare cases.
Fortunately, on August 24, 2017, eligibility to seal criminal records expanded to most felony offenses in Illinois. Under the new law, you may be able to seal your record if you were convicted of burglary, possession with intent to manufacture or deliver a controlled substance, possession of a stolen vehicle, retail theft, or forgery.
With a sealed criminal record, your criminal background will not show up on background checks and, you will be in a better position to land a job or rent a property. Since the new law offers a “one shot” chance, if you are convicted of another felony once your record has been sealed, you will be ineligible to apply to seal your subsequent conviction. Additionally, a court will have the right to unseal your previously sealed record.
If you have been convicted of a nonviolent felony and would like a fair chance at securing a job or housing, it is in your best interest to contact our offices to learn about your eligibility for record sealing or expungement. You can depend on Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC to guide you through the process and represent you as you petition to have your record sealed or expunged. Call us at 630-665-7300 for a free consultation.
How To Calculate Spousal Maintenance or Alimony in Illinois
On January 1, 2016, the current spousal maintenance statute in Illinois went into effect. Spousal support is now calculated using two main factors: the gross income of the spouses and the length of the marriage. Under the formula, maintenance is calculated by taking 30 percent of the gross income of the spouse who earns more minus 20 percent of the gross income of the spouse who earns less. However, the amount of maintenance plus the gross income of the party receiving maintenance cannot exceed 40% of the parties’ combined gross income.
How long spousal maintenance is paid depends on the length of the marriage. The number of years of the marriage is calculated by the percentage put forth in the spousal maintenance statute. For example, if the couple was married for 7 years, then the number 7 is multiplied by 40%. This means that maintenance will be paid or 2.8 years. The statute outlines the percentages that coincide with the duration of the marriage as follows:
- 0-5 year marriage: Number of years of the marriage is multiplied by 20%
- 6-9 year marriage: Number of years is multiplied by 40%
- 10-14 year marriage: Number of years is multiplied by 60%
- 15-19 year marriage is multiplied by 80%
- 20 years or more of marriage is multiplied by 100% (this means that spousal maintenance will be paid until either spouse is deceased)
There are some situations in which the spousal support formula does not apply. For instance, if the divorcing couple's combined income is $250,000 or more, the new support guideline will not apply. In addition, if the spouse that earns more has a support obligation from a previous marriage or relationship, the formula would not apply to him or her. Finally, the court is granted the discretion to award more or less maintenance than what the support guideline dictates.
After a judge has completed the maintenance calculations outlined above, the judge will add the amount of annual maintenance to the gross income of the party receiving maintenance. When the maintenance is added to the spouse's income, the judge will ensure that the sum of the maintenance and spouse's income does not exceed 40% of the couple's combined income.
With the new family-related laws in Illinois, calculating child and spousal support can be difficult and complex. At Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC, we can help you determine exactly how much you owe in spousal support payments. If you would like to challenge your spousal maintenance order or you are going through a divorce, schedule a consultation with our attorneys. Call us at 630-665-7300 or contact us online. We serve clients in Kane County and DuPage County.
What is an Order of Protection?
A civil order of protection is a court order entered in domestic relations or criminal proceedings in order to protect survivors of domestic violence. It will enforce penalties or liabilities to ensure protection for the victim of domestic violence. Orders of protection are not criminal themselves, but the orders are often used in criminal proceedings. At Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC, we assist domestic violence victims with pursuing orders of protection. We also help clients who are recipients of protective orders challenge the order and address the legal ramifications of the court order.
Orders of protection can also be acquired during the divorce process. One of the benefits of an order of protection is that they can be obtained without any notice—making them very difficult for the opposing counsel to legally challenge the order. Parents are allowed to get a hold of an order of protection for their children as well.
There are a few different types of orders of protection. One is an emergency order which can be enforced the day someone requests it. It usually only lasts for 2-3 weeks. Another type of order is an interim order. A judge can give this type of order to someone after the other party has been served. This could last up to a period of 30 days. The third type of court order is a plenary order of protection. It can only be issued after a court hearing and may last up to two years.
If you have been a victim of domestic abuse, or if you have been accused of domestic violence and have a court order issued against you, please contact our offices at Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC so we can answer questions involving your potential case. We have served clients for decades all over the west Chicagoland area including towns in Kane and Kendall counties such as Wheaton, Naperville, St. Charles, Glen Ellyn, Batavia, and throughout Illinois. Call us at 630-665-7300, or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation.
How to Calculate Illinois Child Support After the July 2017 Law Change
On July 1, 2017 child support guidelines changed in Illinois. Now, child support will be calculated using an income shares formula which is used in forty other states. The model takes into account two main factors: each parent’s income and the amount of income that is usually spent on the number of children involved.
The new child support guidelines can significantly impact your child support obligation and payments. If your divorce case involves child support, or if you have any questions about how the new guidelines will affect the amount of support you pay or receive, contact the family law attorneys at Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC. Our lawyers can help you determine the amount of child support you will be legally required to pay.
One factor included in the new child support formula is the parents' net monthly income. Parents can use a standardized tax amount formula or an individualized tax amount formula to determine their net monthly income. Once each parent’s net income is determined, the two incomes are combined. Using this combined income and the number of children the parents share, tables published by the state of Illinois will be used to determine the amount of income that would ordinarily be spent to care for the children. For example, if the parents' combined income is $10,000 and they share one child, that amount is $1,445 per month.
After the amount required to care for the children is established, the amount each parent should contribute in support is determined. This amount is determined based on the contributions each parent makes to the monthly net income. If the non-custodial parent makes $7,500 per month, and the monthly net income is $10,000 per month, that means the parent contributes 75 percent to the net income. The percentage of contribution the parent makes is multiplied by the amount of child support obligation:
75% x $1,445 = $1,083.75 per month
Therefore, the parent would be obligated to pay $1,083.75 per month in child support.
The amount of parenting time each parent has with a child also affects the calculation of child support. The calculation above is true if the non-custodial parent has the child for less than 146 nights per year. If each parent has the child for 146 or more nights per year, the standard formula may not apply, and other factors will be considered when determining the amount of child support.
It can be difficult to understand exactly how the new child support guidelines in Illinois will affect your support obligation and orders. To determine the amount of child support you will be required to pay, contact our Wheaton family law attorneys at MKFM. Call us at 630-665-7300 or contact us online. We serve clients in Naperville, Wheaton, Oak Brook, and throughout DuPage County.
What is Bankruptcy?
There are times when financial situations can be downright overwhelming, and it can feel like there is no way out of any of your debts. If debts become such a significant problem in your life, federal law allows opportunities for fresh starts to relieve that financial stress. At Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC we can teach you about the most common forms of bankruptcy you can file.
For those who are seeking to restructure or eliminate their debt, the bankruptcy code allows three types of financial relief. One option is Chapter 7 bankruptcy which is liquidation or “straight bankruptcy.” This form of bankruptcy is the most common because it allows the debtor to start completely fresh. You should consider filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy if you believe you cannot repay any of your debts, if there are no cosigners involved, or if you expect your creditors to take legal action against you.
Another option is Chapter 13 bankruptcy which can allow you to adjust your debts. This method is used for those who have a consistent source of income and would like to pay their debts if they were able to do so. The debtor can arrange a payment plan between three to five years that will have to be approved by the courts. You will often be allowed to keep larger assets such as your home.
Finally, Chapter 11 bankruptcy applies to commercial enterprises that would like to continue operating their business as they schedule repayments of their debts. Upon the plan’s approval from the court, the business can consolidate, unload debt, and reorganize for a fresh start to hopefully prevent future massive debts.
If you or your family believe that you may have to file for bankruptcy, please contact our offices at MKFM Law so that we can review your information during a free consultation. Do not suffer from crippling debt any longer. We can be reached at 630-665-7300. We serve clients in Elmhurst, Oak Brook, Will County, DuPage County, and across Illinois.