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DuPage County asset division attorney for homemakersWhen a couple chooses to get a divorce, one of the key issues they must resolve is how to split up their property and assets. In an equitable distribution state like Illinois, property is divided in a fair and equitable manner rather than split equally between the spouses. A judge will look at a number of factors to determine how to divide assets fairly. But what if one of the parties did not earn an income because he or she stayed home to raise the children? According to a new study, many people are still conflicted about what homemakers should be entitled to after the divorce.

Who Is More Likely to Be a Homemaker?

According to research, about one in five parents are stay-at-home parents. 27% of all U.S. mothers are stay-at-home parents, while around 7% of fathers stay home to raise the children. While around 10% of mothers who hold a master’s degree or higher choose to opt out of the workplace in order to raise their children, these moms make up about 4% of all stay-at-home mothers. Surveys have also found that the majority of Americans believe that mothers do a better job than fathers of caring for children. 

Results of the Study About Dividing Marital Property

Should caretaking by a stay-at-home parent be valued as highly as the contributions of the partner who brings in the income? A recent study by two professors at Vanderbilt University recruited more than 3,000 subjects to determine their opinion of what homemakers should receive in a divorce. In the study, the professors presented a case of a heterosexual couple where the wife was the homemaker, and the husband initiated the divorce after 17 years of marriage. When making decisions about how to divide the couple’s property, women were more likely to award the wife a higher amount, regardless of the wife’s educational level. Men were more likely to award the wife higher amounts of property if she also had a higher education level.

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Wheaton property division attorney

When you are going through a divorce, you are not only separating from your ex-spouse, but you will also need to split up the assets you own together. Depending on the length of the marriage, it can be difficult to untangle your shared assets and determine who should keep what property. Here are some basic rules for how marital property is divided in Illinois:

Marital Property

During a divorce, Illinois courts only have the authority to divide up marital property. Marital property is defined as property or assets that were obtained during the marriage. Inheritances or gifts that were given only to one spouse and assets obtained before the marriage or after legal separation are considered separate assets that are not eligible for division during the divorce. However, marital and separate property may not always be so easy to define. If an asset that would have been considered separate property was used by both spouses, or if it was “commingled” with marital property, the court may consider it to be a marital asset. For example, if you earned money before your marriage but transferred it into a joint account, then it may be considered marital property.

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Posted on in Divorce

DuPage County order of protection attorney

Ending your marriage can not only be a painful process, but without proper planning, divorce can also be expensive. Fortunately, you have options for how you can complete your divorce, and you can take steps to keep the costs down and dissolve your marriage efficiently and cost-effectively. If you want to ensure that your divorce is completed effectively without breaking the bank, consider the tips below:

Avoid a Trial

The costs of divorce litigation can be very high, and when you need to make multiple appearances in court, legal fees and attorney expenses can add up quickly. To avoid this, you can work with your divorce lawyer and your ex-spouse to settle your case outside of court. You and your former partner may also choose to use mediation to settle your outstanding issues. When you participate in this process, you will work with a neutral third-party mediator to reach an agreement. 

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Wheaton, IL order of protection lawyer

Divorce can be a difficult process, but if you are in an abusive relationship, it may be a necessary one. Unfortunately, abusive relationships often involve manipulation, and sometimes the person who is being abused does not realize they are a victim. Those who are experiencing difficulties in their relationship should be sure to recognize the signs of abuse and learn about their options for escaping an abusive situation.

What Defines an Abusive Relationship?

Not all abusive relationships are physically violent. These relationships typically involve one partner taking control or power over the other. This control can be expressed through physical violence, verbal abuse, and/or manipulative behavior. Mind games, threats, gaslighting, coercion, and intimidation are all common traits of manipulative behavior. Domestic violence can result in physical harm to a spouse or their children, but abuse can cause a great deal of emotional and psychological harm as well.

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Naperville divorce attorney infidelity

The breakup of a marriage is often an emotionally difficult experience, but it can especially hurtful when a divorce was caused by infidelity. If you find your partner cheating, you may have difficulty forming trust and establishing loyalty in future relationships. You may also feel that your ex-spouse’s mistress or paramour caused you significant harm, and you may wonder if you can take legal action against them. In some states, a person can file a civil tort claim for criminal conversation or alienation of affection. In this type of case, a person can sue the person who broke up their marriage, asking the judge to award damages based on loss of consortium, mental anguish, and loss of support.

Criminal Conversation 

Criminal conversation, despite the name, is a civil court case, and a defendant will not face criminal penalties or jail time. To sue a person in this type of case, hard evidence is needed to show that a plaintiff’s spouse committed adultery. This evidence is usually obtained with the help of a private investigator, and it may consist of videos or photographs. It must usually also be proven that the infidelity happened within the marriage (not during a separation), that the act was committed with a person (a business such as a gentlemen's club typically cannot be sued), and the acts took place within the applicable statute of limitations.

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