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Bolingbrook divorce attorney asset division

If you have ever seen any television show or movie about a couple involved in a divorce, you have probably seen the typical depiction of the pair arguing over who gets things like the home, the cars, certain household items, or even custody of the children. Many people going through a divorce, even in real life, forget about what is often one of their most valuable and important assets -- their retirement fund. In Illinois, you and your spouse are required to divide the value of any asset that is considered to be a marital asset, which could include a portion of both you and your spouse’s retirement fund. An Illinois divorce lawyer can help you understand your rights to any retirement funds that you or your spouse may own and how to establish ownership to those funds.

Determining if the Plan Is Marital Property

In Illinois, marital property is defined as any property that is acquired by either spouse during the time of the marriage, with a few exceptions. Retirement funds can be all marital property, all non-marital property, or a combination of both. If a spouse began a retirement fund and made contributions to that fund before the marriage, that portion of the contributions would not be subject to division, while the rest would be. However, if the retirement fund was excluded by a valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, then the entire retirement fund would be considered non-marital property.

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Naperville uncontested divorce attorney

When you tell someone that you are getting a divorce, their first question is often, “Why?” There are a million reasons why couples get divorced, ranging from infidelity to dissatisfaction, to domestic abuse. Prior to 2016, the state of Illinois allowed couples to choose between filing a “no-fault” or “fault” divorce, in which reasons such as adultery and alcohol or drug abuse could be used to place blame for the divorce on one of the spouses. Now, only “irreconcilable differences” are cited as being the reason for a divorce, so as not to assign blame to either spouse. However, couples can still be considered to have a contested or uncontested divorce, depending on the level of cooperation between the individuals. Filing an uncontested divorce has many benefits, like saving time and money, but it is not always feasible for everyone.

What Is an Uncontested Divorce?

Every divorce has a myriad of issues that need to be settled and agreed upon before the divorce can be finalized. Although the issues will vary slightly by the couple, they are the same for most and require couples to make decisions regarding:

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DuPage County divorce lawyerEach year, there are millions of divorces that take place across the country. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the latest data shows that there were an estimated 2.9 divorces for every 1,000 people in the United States in 2018. While that number has decreased somewhat since 2000—when the rate was an estimated 4.0 divorces for every 1,000 people—divorce still remains a common occurrence in our country. Many of these divorces involve children and bring along a litany of issues that must be settled because of it. Parents often wonder how their divorce will affect their children and what they can do to prevent any effects from taking hold. If you are going through an Illinois divorce with your children, here are a few things you should keep in mind:

  • Avoid fighting in front of your children at all costs. It is not the divorce itself that is the cause of the stress and other long-term effects in children, such as anger, depression, and school/social difficulties. Multiple studies have shown that it may actually be exposure to conflict and arguments that cause these negative consequences to take root. You should try to avoid arguments or other fights until you and your spouse are away from your children or alone.

  • Do not speak negatively about your spouse to your child. Your child does not care what happened during your marriage. All your child knows is that you and your spouse are mom and dad and that you are loved very much. Your child deserves to maintain a positive image of both parents without the other parent attempting to spoil that.

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DuPage County divorce attorney spousal maintenance

When you are in the midst of a divorce, it can start to feel overwhelming, like there is no end in sight. Divorce negotiations can be unpredictable, leaving you with much to wonder about, including what your life will be like after your divorce is over. There are so many questions that you likely have on your mind -- where you will be living, if you have to sell your home, and whether or not you will have enough income to support yourself and your children if you are a parent. Regardless if you are a stay-at-home parent or you work outside of the home, many people have financial worries when they go to get a divorce. 

Financial Considerations

The best way to ensure you are in good financial standing after your divorce is to take the proper steps to protect your financial health during your divorce. Here are a few ways you can be proactive in preparing your finances for post-divorce life:

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Will County divorce attorney parenting time

For many people, most of their knowledge about divorce is simply what they have seen played out in movies or TV or from stories they have heard from their family and friends who have gone through a divorce. No two divorces are the same, so there are many things that may come as a shock to couples who end up going through the process. This can be especially true when it comes to couples who have children. Parents getting a divorce have many additional issues to worry about, including allocating parenting time and parental responsibilities. For many parents, one of the biggest shocks can be realizing just how much less time they will be spending with their children.

Examining the Determining Factors

Nearly all family law practitioners and the court system encourages you to work together with your spouse to work out a parenting time agreement, but when a couple becomes contentious with one another, the court must sometimes intervene. If the court has to step in to make decisions about issues such as allocating parenting time, the decision will be made based on what is determined to be in the child’s best interests. To do this, the court looks at a variety of factors involving your situation, including:

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