Category Archives: Kane County Blog

Kane County divorceEvery day, people make the decision to divorce their spouse. Sometimes, the split is related to adultery or abuse, and other times the spouses simply no longer wish to be married. For many of these couples, divorce is something they never saw in their future. Most couples get married with the hope of spending the rest of their lives together. They share not only their lives but also all of their possessions. This can make the issue of property division especially tricky during divorce.

Couples who are considering divorce may worry about how their savings account, retirement accounts, family home, vehicles, furniture, and other assets will be divided. In Illinois, property is divided based on what is “equitable.” This means that the property may not be split exactly evenly. Instead, it will be divided in accordance with what the court deems to be fair and just. Each case is different, but generally, a judge will consider factors such as:

  • Each spouse’s contributions to the acquisition, preservation, or increased value of marital property, including contributions as a homemaker;
  • Custodial arrangements for children conceived during the marriage (the family home is often awarded to the parent who has a majority of the parenting time with the children);
  • An existing prenuptial or post-nuptial agreement;
  • The duration of the marriage;
  • Each spouse's age, health, and economic circumstances, and future employability;
  • Whether a spouse is receiving spousal support from a former spouse;
  • Each spouse's current job and their abilities for future acquisition of assets and income; and
  • Spousal support or child support that either spouse is already paying.

Equitable property distribution in an Illinois divorce can be complicated. The divorce process is already an emotional experience, and the division of assets can sometimes be difficult. Those considering divorce may worry that their spouse will get more than his or her fair share of the marital property. Others who have stayed at home to raise children or to be homemakers may worry that they will be unable to find employment after divorce. There are so many things to consider when dissolving a marriage, it is extremely difficult to manage alone.

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Kane County family law attorneysThe purpose of child support is to help the primary residential parent of a child or children to be able to afford basic necessities such as rent or mortgage payments, the child’s clothing, school supplies, and their meals. Those who receive child support often depend on that extra income in order to pay their bills and maintain a good quality of life for their children. For some parents, a missed payment here and there will not cause a major financial crisis. For others living on a tight budget, a missed child support payment can be devastating. During the holidays, many parents rush to the stores to buy their children Christmas gifts. However, it is important to note that the money spent on children’s Christmas gifts cannot count toward child support payments.

Changes to Child Support in Illinois

Recently, several major changes were made to the way Illinois courts calculate child support. The amount of child support that is awarded to a parent is now based on an “income shares” or “shared parenting” model. The incomes of both parents are now taken into account, rather than solely that of the paying parent. The new model also takes into consideration how much time the parents each spend with their children on an overnight basis. This is intended to help alleviate the child support costs for those parents who also spend money on their children during their parenting time. The new model is based on three main factors: the estimated total amount of money needed to raise the child, extra costs that a parent may encounter such as expenses for health care, education, and after-school activities, and the amount of overnights the child spends with each parent.

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Kane County divorce attorneysDivorce is an intensely personal process that is often fraught with many challenges and difficulties. Many relationship experts suggest that divorce is the second most stressful event a person is likely to experience—only the death of a spouse is usually considered to be more stressful. Ending a marriage, however, does not always need to be turbulent and filled with acrimony. There are some practical things that you can do in advance that can make your divorce a little easier.

Know What You Have

It is not unusual for people to take their assets and property for granted. For example, you may realize that you and your spouse own your home and your vehicles, but you may also have investments that you have not thought about in years. Alternatively, many people do not realize the full value of things they own. Your collection of baseball cards or porcelain dolls may be important to you for sentimental reasons, but they may also be worth a substantial amount of money if you were to sell them.

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Kane County divorce lawyersDivorce is not an entirely new phenomenon but it has certainly become more socially acceptable and widespread over the last 40 or so years. As divorce became more commonplace in the 1970s and 80s, a divorcing couples’ children were generally left under the care of their mothers. Divorced dads, by and large, seemed to be less important—with the exception of child support—in the bigger picture of raising the children.

In many ways, this custom was a reflection of the cultural belief that mothers were more nurturing and more inclined to raise children properly compared to fathers. While fathers were given occasional “visits” with their children, it was difficult for men to foster true parent-child relationships with their sons and daughters. In fact, many were more like an uncle figure or family friend than a dad.

New Understandings

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Kane County divorce attorneyCountless factors could contribute to a couple’s decision to end their marriage and seek a divorce. Such factors may include differing views on money, a breakdown in communication, unrealistic expectations, and infidelity. Relationship experts have long recognized that having children can also affect the stability of a marriage. Many couples find that adding children ultimately makes their marriage stronger while others are driven to the point of divorce. While there is no way to know for sure what children will do to your marriage, a recent study suggests that having a first-born girl could increase your chances of divorce.

Different Studies, Different Results

Several research projects over the last few years have looked at the possible link between marital happiness and a child’s gender. A few conducted in the United States have found that parents who had girls first were more likely to divorce than those with first-born boys. Other American studies challenged such findings, but until now, there has been very little research done into how girls affect their parents’ marriages.

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