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naperville divorce lawyerMaking the decision to divorce your spouse is difficult. However, breaking the news to your children can become another hurdle. News of a separation, divorce, or breakup can be highly unsettling for children, especially young ones. Kids thrive off of routine and stability, making separation difficult for them to accept. If you are struggling to break the news of a breakup with your kids, here are ten tips that can help you prepare for a conversation. 

1. Meet with a Child Psychologist 

Many psychologists and therapists specialize in working with children. Having a licensed counselor working alongside your children as they go through a divorce can help a child process their emotions and healthily work through grief. A therapist can provide you with strategies for communicating with your children. 

2. Maintain a Routine 

Children thrive on familiar behaviors, places, and people. One of the best ways to ease a child into a new lifestyle is by preserving some of an old routine or sticking to a new one. For example, sticking to the same morning and night routine can help a child adjust to a new home or city. 

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shutterstock_373550518.jpg If you feel that your relationship with your spouse is ending, you may be ready to terminate your marriage. Choosing to divorce a spouse is not easy, and most partners conduct lots of research before making this life-changing decision. Spouses may look into the cost of divorce, how to divide shared property, and use testimonies from other divorced couples to understand the divorce process. However, just like each couple, every divorce differs in many ways. 

Contested and Uncontested Divorce in Illinois 

Divorces can come in many forms. The most common distinction between divorces is whether the process is contested or uncontested. In a contested divorce, spouses will disagree over an aspect or multiple aspects of the divorce outcome. For example, a contested divorce could include a husband and wife in complete disagreement over who will remain living in the shared family home. On the other hand, an uncontested divorce is typically collaborative, and the spouses work together to form a mutual divorce agreement. In an uncontested divorce, there likely won’t be much fighting or disagreement. 

Due to the lack of contention, uncontested divorces can be resolved without significant litigation, making uncontested divorces much less expensive than other forms of divorce resolution. 

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dupage county divorce lawyer Separation before a divorce can be confusing for many reasons. While you are still legally married, you and your partner may live apart. Your partnership may feel more like a series of legal obligations to sort through before your divorce is finalized. While being separated allows couples to begin independent lives as single individuals, spouses still have legal obligations to one another. Partners must make many decisions during separation, including how to remain financially afloat. 

Who Pays the Bills?

Illinois courts will attempt to maintain the status quo when deciding who pays which bills throughout the divorce process. Essentially, this means that whatever the strategy was for paying the bills before separation will be maintained. For example, if your spouse would typically pay the mortgage payments, and you would pay for the cars, this payment schedule is expected to be maintained throughout the separation. 

Maintaining the status quo for bill payments throughout separation is beneficial because it helps prevent unnecessary contention between spouses. As the divorce process unfolds, couples may argue over various decisions, such as child care, property division, and debt allocation. By enforcing each spouse to maintain the bills they were capable of paying before separation, family units will have one less task to consider.

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naperville divorce lawyerThe divorce process opens the door to new discussions for partners. It can be challenging to know how to navigate the many gray areas uncovered throughout a divorce, such as how much spousal support will be awarded, who will stay living in the shared family home, and which financial assets belong to each respective spouse. One common question posed during a divorce is how to pay bills during the marriage dissolution process. In short, the answer to this question is that it depends. There are a few key distinctions to consider when deciding how to pay family bills during the divorce process. 

Consideration One — Joint and Separate Assets  

In Illinois, whoever owns the financial asset, whether a mortgage or other payment, is responsible for maintaining that payment, even throughout a divorce. If you and your partner share the deed to the house, you are both responsible for paying the mortgage until the divorce is finalized. Couples should consider which assets are individually owned and which are shared to create a plan for maintaining those bills throughout a divorce. 

Consideration Two — How are the Bills Already Split?

How are bills currently split between you and your partner? Do you both have a system that is working for you? Has one partner decided to stop paying their portion of bills? Has either of you had a change in income or job status? 

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shutterstock_298029158.jpgChoosing to divorce your spouse is a difficult decision. There are various reasons that couples make the final decision to dissolve their marriage, from infidelity to unmatched values. Illinois is a no-fault divorce state, which means that spouses do not need to express the reasoning behind the divorce. In a no-fault divorce, the only grounds for divorce are irreconcilable differences. 

Defining Irreconcilable Differences

When things are irreconcilable, they are unable to be made compatible. In divorce terms, irreconcilable differences refer to couples being completely incompatible and unable to resolve their differences. This is an overarching term used to describe the many reasons that couples argue, leading to a divorce. For example, in a state with fault-based divorce, infidelity may be listed as the grounds for divorce. However, infidelity and other marital miscouduct usually has little bearing on the outcome of an Illinois divorce.

Illinois law on the Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act describes irreconcilable differences as meeting these four criteria:

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