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Wheaton, IL 60189
The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C.
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Wheaton, IL divorce lawyer for social mediaDivorce can be a difficult, stressful process. Addressing the complex issues involved in separating from your spouse and beginning your newly-single life can be overwhelming. As you work to resolve the various legal concerns and practical matters that arise during the divorce process, you may not realize that certain other aspects of your life will also be affected. One concern that can sometimes fall by the wayside is your use of technology, online services, and social media. During the divorce process, it is a good idea to comb through your online presence and consider the devices and systems you use and how these will be affected. Here are some issues to consider:

Reset Your Passwords

Whether your divorce is contentious or amicable, it is a good idea to change your passwords immediately to ensure that nobody else can access your accounts. A password generator can be used to create strong, completely random passwords that will provide the best level of security. This will prevent your ex-spouse from guessing any passwords that may be based on personal information (birthdays, anniversaries, etc.). If you need help remembering passwords, you can write them down in a notebook or save them on your phone where only you will be able to see them.

Back Up What You Want to Keep

It is common in most households for families to share electronic devices, such as computers or tablets. When dividing assets, you might not get to keep all of these devices. If you have any data on shared devices that you want to keep, such as documents, photos, or tax information, be sure to save a backup on a hard drive or another type of storage device. After making a backup, you may want to restore a device to its factory settings to ensure that your ex will not have access to copies of your personal files.

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DuPage County divorce lawyer for tax issuesWhen you are going through a divorce, the process of legally ending your marriage can be difficult, and that is especially true if you have children. In addition to addressing the allocation of parental responsibilities (formerly called child custody) and the amount of time children will spend with each parent, you will need to determine how to make sure your children’s financial needs are met. Each parent will have child support obligations that are based on the income earned by both parents and, in some cases, by each parent’s amount of parenting time. Typically, the parent with less parenting time will make child support payments to the other parent, although this is not always true, and the amount of payments will vary depending on the circumstances of each individual case. If you will be paying or receiving child support, you may have questions about when and how these payments will be made. 

Income Withholding

In many cases, the easiest way to handle child support payments is by having them withheld from the income earned by the paying parent. Arrangements for doing so may be made as part of a couple’s divorce decree, and the Illinois Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) will contact that parent’s employer and begin garnishing their wages. This allows for a convenient way to ensure that payments are automatically made from one parent to the other, and by having an outside agency handle the payments, it limits any disagreements between the parents. Wage garnishment may also be initiated by DCSS if a parent becomes delinquent in making child support payments, and the agency may also take measures such as suspending a non-paying parent’s driver’s license or withholding funds from their tax refunds.

Direct Payments

If garnishment of wages is not feasible, or if parents wish to use a different arrangement, they may agree to have the paying parent make child support payments directly to the other parent. This type of arrangement may be used if a parent is self-employed, unemployed, or is paid only on commission. While payments can be made using methods such as cash, online payments, checks, or money orders, this can make it difficult to maintain proof of payment. It may also be difficult to resolve conflicts over payments, and financial data may be insecure if payments are made digitally. In most cases, it is preferable for the paying parent to make payments to the Illinois State Disbursement Unit, which will then distribute the funds to the receiving parent. 

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Wheaton, IL divorce attorney for couples over 50There is no right or wrong time to get a divorce. Even if you have been married for a long time, people can change, and circumstances may arise in which “irreconcilable differences” lead to the end of your relationship. There is a growing trend in which people over the age of 50 who have been married a long amount of time are now splitting up. This is called a “grey divorce,” and spouses who choose to end their marriage at a later age are sometimes known as “silver splitters.” 

There are many reasons older people choose to divorce. For one, their finances may be in a more secure place, and they may be more likely to afford legal counsel and have a comfortable life post-divorce. In addition, with growing life expectancies, after a significant time together, two people may have simply grown apart. No matter the reason, each divorce brings its own set of challenges. If you are going through a grey divorce, some of the issues you may face include:

Dealing With Retirement and Social Security

In most cases, one person’s pension benefits are considered joint assets, and they must be split between spouses during their divorce. This can be difficult for a person who spent their entire career earning a pension only to have a significant portion of it go to their ex-partner. Funds in retirement accounts, such as a 401K or IRA, must also be divided during divorce. These funds should be divided using a document known as a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). In addition, Social Security benefits may also need to be reevaluated, and ex-spouses should be sure to understand when they can begin receiving these benefits.

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Illinois divorce lawyersFor the thousands of Americans that elect to pursue a divorce each year, separating from a former-spouse can be an incredibly positive life-changing decision. However, parties must be prepared to live independently once the divorce process is finalized. Financial independence is, arguably, one of the more difficult aspects to master, post-divorce. As such, it is critical that parties start to prepare for financial independence as soon as possible. One of the best places to start is to consult with a seasoned divorce lawyer about the health of your finances, and how the divorce could impact it, moving forward.

Steps to Securing Financial Stability

Once your divorce has been finalized, you need to act quickly to ensure long-term financial security. A quality attorney can help you develop an action plan, and begin working towards financial independence.

Develop a New Budget: After your divorce, it is important to recognize that you are no longer able to count on the income of your former spouse. The development of an independent budget can help you make decisions about what kind of housing options you can afford, what extracurricular activities your children can participate in, and whether or not you need to make various changes to your lifestyle. Budgeting for your new lifestyle can be a laborious task, but it can also save you from an unsustainable financial future.

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Illinois divorce lawyersTaking the step to file for a divorce can be one of the most difficult decisions in your life. Although it can represent a new brighter chapter in your life, the decision to separate can backfire, especially when you proceed without proper legal representation. From securing your marital assets to helping you fight for child custody, a quality family law team can ensure a happy and secure future for you and your family. If you are in the midst of a divorce, picking the right attorney can make all the difference.

Choosing the Right Lawyer

As you begin the divorce process, the most important step you can take is ensuring you choose the "right" attorney. When picking your divorce lawyer it is important to take into account their legal background, the experience of previous clients, your own needs, and your connection with the attorney.

Asking your prospective divorce lawyer about their experience in the field should be one of the first steps you take in your initial meeting. Using client testimonials and inquiring about previous victories can give you insight into how an attorney could impact your divorce. Lastly, only you can decide if you truly trust and believe in an attorney. If you do not have a good feeling about a potential lawyer, they are more than likely not the right fit for you.

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