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Recent Blog Posts

5 Things to Expect During Divorce Litigation in Kane County

 Posted on June 16, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce LawyerWhile most spouses can make a divorce strategy like mediation or negotiation work, some cannot. Maybe your spouse is being utterly unreasonable and will not compromise. Or maybe your spouse has a substance abuse or mental health problem and will not participate in alternative dispute resolution. In cases involving spousal abuse, your attorney may recommend that you do not even attempt to resolve your divorce out of court. While few people want to go through divorce litigation, it may sometimes be your only option if you want to get your divorce finalized. It is important to understand what to expect during the divorce litigation process. The best thing you can do to protect yourself is to work with an experienced and aggressive divorce attorney. 

What to Expect During Divorce Litigation

Litigation is rarely pleasant, but if you must go through it you should know what to expect. When you are going through a contested divorce, you should prepare for: 

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Making Divorce Mediation Work

 Posted on June 08, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce AttorneyDivorce mediation offers a lot of benefits over divorce litigation. The results of litigation can be unpredictable, but with mediation, you and your spouse can remain in control. Mediation is also less costly and typically less time-consuming than going to court. It can also spare any children involved some stress and offer them a sense of stability knowing that their parents can still cooperate. However, actually going through the mediation process can still be difficult. It can take several sessions to get every issue worked out, or you could wind up going back and forth on the phone for a while. You and your spouse will both need to stay committed to the process. If you are interested in divorce mediation as an alternative to litigation, an attorney can tell you more. 

Helpful Tips for Navigating Divorce Mediation

While going through mediation may bring up some strong emotions and feel stressful, it is still easier for most than going through a trial. Some tips that may help you successfully mediate your divorce include: 

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Getting a Divorce When Your Spouse Has a Substance Abuse Problem

 Posted on May 31, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Family Law AttorneyBeing married to someone who is addicted to drugs or alcohol can be intolerable. People with substance abuse disorders put their addictions first and their spouses and families second. When you finally decide that your marriage is no longer sustainable and divorce is your best option, you should be prepared for an uphill battle. Addicts and alcoholics are typically not the most reliable or reasonable people, which can make getting their cooperation during the divorce process very difficult. They likely manipulated you a lot during your marriage and will probably continue trying to do so during your divorce. You may face an emotional struggle on top of your legal struggle. It is important to work with a strong attorney who can help you stand your ground and protect your own interests and the interests of any children you share with your spouse. 

Tips for Divorcing a Drug Addict or Alcoholic

You cannot do anything to change your spouse’s behavior. If you are at the point where you are seeking a divorce, you have probably tried everything you can think of to help your spouse overcome their addiction. Some things to keep in mind during the divorce process include: 

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Options for Resolving a Divorce Without Litigation

 Posted on May 13, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce Mediation LawyerGoing through a divorce can be extremely difficult even under the best circumstances. Divorce litigation–that is, contested divorce–can be particularly stressful. It is also time-consuming and often expensive. If you and your spouse share children, a Guardian ad Litem is likely to be appointed. You should know that you have other options for getting divorced. In fact, various forms of out-of-court divorce are rapidly replacing litigation as the main way that people in Illinois get divorced. 

Even if your divorce is less than amicable, you and your spouse may still be able to use means other than litigation to settle your divorce. Divorce attorneys often encourage clients to use these simpler means in order to divide their property and create a new parenting plan. Your divorce lawyer will assess your situation to help determine whether one of these low-conflict methods may work for you. 

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4 Things to Expect When You Adopt in Kane County

 Posted on April 19, 2022 in Family Law

Kane County Adoption LawyerAdopting a child can be a joyous occasion for many. When you choose to adopt a child in Kane County, there are a few things you should know and prepare for. The process of adoption can vary depending on the circumstances–a family adoption may look quite a bit different than an adoption through an agency or a foster child adoption. At times, the process may seem frustrating, redundant, or confusing. Having an attorney who is experienced with adoption can help simplify the process for you. 

What Should I Expect When I am Planning to Adopt?

The more you know about the Illinois adoption process in advance, the better you can prepare. While some parts of the screening or court proceedings might seem intimidating, keep in mind that you are not expected to be perfect. The state is mainly interested in making sure that you will be able to provide a safe environment for the child. Some things you should be aware of going in include: 

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Fast Facts About Guardians Ad Litem in Illinois

 Posted on April 11, 2022 in Family Law

Kane County Parenting Time LawyerLegal matters involving children are of special importance in the eyes of the court. Children are often in a very vulnerable position during a divorce, child custody dispute, adoption, or other legal matter. The court cannot call a small child to the stand and examine him or her the way the court may examine an adult. Furthermore, children may be manipulated by the adults in the case or afraid to tell the truth. Guardians Ad Litem are specially qualified professionals, often attorneys, who advocate on behalf of children during legal proceedings.

The Guardian Ad Litem Advocates for the Child’s Best Interests

Some people think that a Guardian Ad Litem works for one of the parties in a divorce or other legal matter. Others assume that the Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) is the child’s own attorney. In reality, a GAL does not represent any one person. The GAL’s job is to evaluate the facts of the case and determine what he or she thinks is in the child’s best interests.

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Which Assets Are My Property but Not My Spouse’s?

 Posted on March 25, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce LawyerIn general, just about everything you and your spouse have acquired during the course of your marriage is considered marital property. Marital property is to be equitably (fairly) divided during a divorce. However, it is possible for a married person to own separate property, that belongs only to them and not to their spouse. Separate property is not subject to any kind of equitable division during divorce. The spouse who owns it keeps it. One of the first steps towards dividing property in a divorce involves identifying what is marital property and separate property. Your lawyer will be able to help you determine what is or is not your separate property. 

What is Considered One Spouse’s Sole Property?

Even when you are married, you can have property or money that only belongs to you. This type of property include: 

  • Premarital Property - Getting married does not mean that all of your property abruptly becomes your spouse’s property too. If you came into the marriage with it, you can leave the marriage with it as well in most instances. For example, if you are still driving the car that belonged to you before you got married, your spouse is not likely able to claim any ownership interest in your vehicle. This does also includes any debts you had before you got married, like student loans or old credit card debt.

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Kane County Child Custody Terms Explained

 Posted on March 04, 2022 in Family Law

Kane County Parenting Time LawyerYou are probably familiar with terms like “custody” and “visitation.” Terms like these have been used across the country for a long time. You do not need to have a legal background to know that “physical custody” has to do with who the child is physically with. Illinois uses updated terminology for a number of reasons. Some of the old terms no longer reflect the current reality of Illinois families. Others were changed because they carried unintended implications. This changing terminology came as part of a broader overhaul in divorce law and other types of family law related to children. While you may still hear the old terms used in less formal settings, it is helpful to understand the terms you will hear in the courtroom. 

What Child-Related Family Law Terms Should I Know?

It can be easy to get a little confused in court or during mediation if you have not been made aware of the updated terminology. Here are a few terms specific to Illinois that you should know:

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A Guide to Marital Property in Illinois

 Posted on February 18, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce LawyerIf you are going through a divorce in Illinois, you are likely concerned about what will or will not be considered marital property for the purposes of asset division. Division of marital assets works a little differently in Illinois than it would in a community property state. Rather than dividing marital assets equally (50/50), assets are divided equitably, or in a manner that is fair to both parties. The first step is usually determining what is and is not a marital asset for purposes of equitable division. If you are going through a divorce, it is important to be represented by your own legal counsel. 

What is Marital Property in Illinois?

Most property purchased, earned, or acquired during the marriage would be considered marital property, even if the title is in only one spouse’s name. Common examples of marital property include: 

  • Accounts - This includes bank accounts, retirement savings accounts, and investment accounts. 

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What To Do If You Are Served With an Order of Protection During Your Divorce

 Posted on February 07, 2022 in Family Law

Geneva Family Law AttorneyOrders of protection can be excellent tools to help victims of domestic abuse stay safe. Unfortunately, they can also be used abusively in high-conflict divorce cases. These orders typically prevent the alleged abuser from contacting the alleged victim and returning to the marital home. The requisite abuse need not be physical or violent in nature. Courts will grant restraining orders if they believe that harassment, restrictions of personal liberty, or other forms of abusive behaviors are taking place. In some cases, children may also be named as protected parties. If you are served with one, it can put you in a very difficult position. Your best bet is to immediately contact a qualified attorney and follow their instructions. 

My Spouse Obtained an Order of Protection Against Me. Now What?

The first and most important thing you must do is to obey the order exactly as it is written. Should you violate it, you could be arrested and charged with a crime. Even if the protection order came from the divorce court rather than any criminal court, it is illegal to violate it. You do not want to be battling a criminal case and your divorce case at the same time, and a protection order violation will do you no favors in divorce court. Here are some steps you can take if your spouse has you served with an order of protection during your high-conflict divorce: 

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