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Bloomingdale Prenuptial Agreement LawyerThere are many reasons why a couple may choose to enter into a prenuptial agreement before they get married. These agreements, which are commonly known as “prenups,” will detail how certain issues will be handled if a couple chooses to get divorced in the future. A person who owns significant assets may use a prenup to ensure that they can maintain ownership of these assets in the case of divorce. A couple may also make decisions about whether either party will receive spousal support or how different types of marital property will be divided. While these agreements can be very beneficial, it is important to make sure that an agreement is legally valid and will be enforceable if a couple chooses to get a divorce in the future.

Issues That Affect Enforceability of Prenups

A prenuptial agreement must be created prior to a couple’s marriage, and it will become valid after the couple becomes legally married. To ensure that the terms of an agreement will be followed in the case of divorce, spouses will want to do the following:

  • Consult with an attorney - Each spouse should be able to review an agreement with the help of an independent attorney. This will ensure that they fully understand the terms of the agreement and their rights if they decide to get divorced at a later date. If one spouse chooses not to consult with an attorney, they should provide a written and signed statement waiving their right to receive legal counsel.

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DuPage County asset division attorney

Having a child can bring a couple closer together and make them more committed to each other. Unfortunately, child-related matters can be some of the most divisive and contentious issues that can arise if the couple decides to break up. Child custody cases can become heated, with parents turning on one another. This is why it is critical to have a skilled Illinois child custody attorney to represent you.

Addressing Child Custody in Illinois

In Illinois, “allocation of parental responsibilities” is the legal term now used to refer to child custody. In any custody case, the courts will have to decide how parents will share responsibility for making decisions regarding the child (i.e., education, health, and religion) and what percentage of time the child will spend with each parent. All of this information is stipulated in a parenting plan that is ultimately approved by the court.

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DuPage County asset division attorney

When a person gets married, “yours” and “mine” becomes “ours.” Unfortunately, untangling property and debt during a divorce is often one of the most complicated and contentious aspects of the divorce process. Many divorcing couples assume that they can easily divide assets on their own. Armed with a calculator and a cooperative attitude, they begin allocating property only to realize that the process is much more complex than they realized it would be. If you are getting divorced and any of the following factors are involved, you may need professional legal assistance to divide your property during divorce.

Owning Hard-to-Value Assets or Property with Fluctuating Value

Whether you are negotiating an out-of-court property division arrangement or your divorce case goes to court, property cannot be distributed to the spouses without accurately valuing the property. Some assets are much easier to value than others. Determining an accurate value for antiques and collectibles, for example, can be very difficult without a professional appraisal.

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DuPage County family law attorneyAccording to Illinois law, divorced and unmarried parents are expected to financially support their children. In most cases, the parent who spends the most time directly caring for the child receives financial support from the other parent in the form of child support. The amount that an Illinois parent pays in child support is largely based on his or her income. If a parent loses his or her income, does he or she still have to pay child support?

Job Loss Does Not Automatically Excuse a Parent from His or Her Child Support Obligation  

Child-related costs including childcare, education, and housing can quickly add up. Most parents rely heavily on the financial support they gain from child support payments to cover child-related expenses. A child’s financial needs do not disappear simply because a parent quits or loses his or her job. Consequently, a parent’s child support obligation does not automatically disappear if he or she is suddenly without income. However, the parent may qualify for a reduced child support obligation through a “Petition for Modification of Child Support.”

The Reason for the Change in Income is a Major Deciding Factor

Per Illinois law, parents may be able to modify the terms of their child support order if a “substantial change in circumstances” warrants the modification. Illinois courts may reduce a parent’s child support obligation if he or she experiences a job loss or significant decrease in income. However, the reason for the decrease in income is a vital factor in the court’s decision. If the parent has voluntarily quit his or her job and makes little attempt to reestablish employment, courts are unlikely to be sympathetic to the parent’s financial predicament. On the other hand, if the parent was laid off, fired, or cannot work because of COVID-19, the court is more likely to award a child support modification.

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Carol Stream divorce attorney property division

The merging of two lives through marriage also includes considerable financial melding. Dividing funds and property during a divorce is often one of the most complicated and contentious parts of the divorce process. If you are thinking about getting divorced in Illinois, it is important to know your rights regarding property distribution. You and your spouse may be able to reach your own property settlement or the court may need to intervene. An experienced divorce lawyer can assist with property division negotiations or represent you in court during a trial.

Reaching a Property Division Agreement With Your Spouse

Spouses have the option of deciding their own property division agreement without the court’s input. However, doing so without professional support can be very challenging. It can also result in a settlement that is unfairly biased toward one party. An experienced divorce lawyer can help you and your spouse negotiate property division issues and reach a mutually agreeable solution. During an Illinois divorce, each spouse is expected to submit a full inventory of his or her assets, income, and debts. Some spouses “forget” to include assets or underreport their income. If you have any concerns about hidden assets or financial fraud during your divorce, hiring a skilled divorce lawyer is essential.  

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