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Recent Blog Posts

Top Five Reasons Why DIY Divorce Should Be Avoided 

 Posted on September 08, 2023 in Divorce

Wheaton Divorce LawyersDivorce is a challenging and emotionally charged process that involves complex legal concepts and the need to make important, potentially life-altering decisions regarding your future. While the idea of DIY (do-it-yourself) divorce may seem appealing due to potential cost savings, it is essential to understand why such divorce practices are horrendously bad ideas. It is thus necessary to understand the top five reasons why DIY divorce should be avoided, emphasizing the importance of seeking professional legal assistance from a lawyer.

Knowledge of Legal Concepts 

Divorce laws and procedures can be very confusing, especially for people who lack a background in law. Attempting a DIY divorce without proper legal training can lead to glaring mistakes, oversights, and missed opportunities. An experienced attorney will possess the necessary understanding of the legal system, ensuring that your rights are protected and that all legal requirements are effectively fulfilled. 

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What Makes Gray Divorce Particularly Difficult?

 Posted on September 06, 2023 in Divorce

Wheaton, IL gray divorce lawyerGray divorce, the term used to describe the dissolution of marriages among couples aged 50 and older, presents unique challenges. While divorce is never easy, gray divorce can be especially difficult due to various factors at this stage of life. If your marriage is ending and you will soon be going through a gray divorce, contact an experienced lawyer to understand the different elements of gray divorce and what makes them different from other forms of divorce. 

Long-Term Financial Implications

Gray divorce often involves the division of significant assets, retirement savings, and pensions accumulated over many years. Determining a fair and equitable distribution can be complex, especially when considering the future financial needs of both parties. The potential impact on retirement plans and the need to rebuild financial stability can be daunting. It is also important to note that in marriages that have lasted 20 years or longer, spousal maintenance may be awarded indefinitely, depending on the circumstances of the case.

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Who is Entitled to Commingled Assets in a Divorce?

 Posted on August 28, 2023 in Property Division

Wheaton, IL asset division lawyerDivorce can be an emotionally and legally turbulent process, particularly when it comes to dividing assets acquired during the marriage. In Illinois, the division of commingled assets can add an additional layer of complexity. In this blog, we will explore the factors that influence the division of commingled assets in an Illinois divorce, providing clarity on who may be entitled to them and how these decisions are made. Discuss with your divorce attorney how commingled assets may be a factor in your divorce and how such assets should be equitably divided. 

A Simple Way to Understand Commingled Assets

Commingled assets refer to funds or properties that have become mingled or mixed during the course of a marriage. For instance, if money from a rental property owned by just one spouse is deposited into a joint bank account and spent on marital expenses, the money becomes commingled and may no longer be the sole property of the spouse who owns the rental property. In Illinois, determining the status of these assets and ensuring a fair division can be challenging, as the court follows equitable distribution rather than a precise 50/50 split. When it comes to commingled assets, the court will consider various factors, including:

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Should I Fight for the House in My Divorce or Let My Partner Have It?

 Posted on August 25, 2023 in Property Division

Wheaton, IL asset division lawyerDeciding what to do with the family home is often one of the most difficult aspects of a divorce. It is important to know what key factors to consider when deciding whether to fight for the house or let your partner have it, providing you with the understanding you need to make an informed decision. If you are going through a divorce and are deciding whether to fight for the marital home, discuss the matter with your attorney before you make any lasting decisions. 

Economic Considerations 

Of course, financial considerations play a crucial role in determining whether to fight for the house. Consider things like the mortgage balance, property value, and ability to maintain the home independently. Assess whether you can afford the mortgage, taxes, insurance, and maintenance costs. With the assistance of your divorce attorney, consider consulting with a financial advisor to fully understand the potential impact and long-term financial responsibilities before reaching a decision. 

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What is a Bifurcated Divorce?

 Posted on August 21, 2023 in Divorce

Wheaton, IL bifurcated divorce lawyerIn the realm of divorce proceedings, a term that sometimes arises is “bifurcated divorce.” Today, we will explore what a bifurcated divorce entails, focusing on its definition, process, and potential implications. By understanding this unique approach to divorce, individuals facing complex marital situations can make more informed decisions about their legal options. Like other forms of divorce, a divorce lawyer is an essential resource for couples going through traditional divorce and bifurcated divorce.

Defining Bifurcated Divorce

Bifurcation refers to dividing a divorce case into two separate parts or stages. In the context of a divorce, it essentially means that the legal dissolution of the marriage is granted before all remaining issues, such as property division, child custody, and spousal support, are completely resolved. This approach allows couples to efficiently obtain a legal divorce while continuing to negotiate or litigate the remaining matters. 

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Does a Contested Divorce Mean a More Expensive Divorce?

 Posted on August 18, 2023 in Divorce

Wheaton, IL contested divorce lawyerDivorce can take a toll on someone’s emotions as well as their bank account. A contested divorce, in which the spouses cannot agree on the divorce terms, tends to be more grueling and time-consuming, raising concerns about increased costs. Today, we will explore whether a contested divorce truly leads to a more expensive outcome and the factors that influence the overall expenses in such cases. 

Discuss with your divorce attorney ways to try and keep costs down during your divorce. An experienced attorney like The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C. has had past clients concerned about the costs associated with their divorce, making their input and guidance essential as you look not to break the bank. 

What Does it Mean for a Divorce to be Contested?

When spouses cannot reach a consensus on crucial issues related to a divorce, such as child custody, litigation may be necessary. Litigation in a divorce involves taking your case to court to help make decisions on these important matters. Compared to an uncontested divorce, where spouses agree on all terms, contested divorce tends to be more costly to account for courtroom appearances, intensified negotiations, and more.

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How Long Can I Expect My Illinois Divorce to Take? 

 Posted on August 15, 2023 in Divorce

Wheaton, IL divorce lawyerThe duration of a divorce process in Illinois can vary depending on several factors. Today, we will discuss the typical timeline of an Illinois divorce, providing insights into the critical stages and factors that could affect its length. During this difficult time, hire a qualified divorce lawyer to ensure you are able to receive the legal counsel you need to effectively navigate your divorce.

These Factors Can Affect the Length of Your Divorce 

Divorces are intricate legal matters that require careful navigation of legal procedures. While it is impossible to predict with absolute certainty the exact duration of a divorce, here is a general outline based on the average timeline of an Illinois divorce:

  1. Filing for Divorce – The Illinois divorce process typically begins with filing for divorce. In Illinois, this is referred to as the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, and it must be filed in the county where you or your spouse reside. Once the petition is filed, a copy is served to the other party, who then has 30 days to respond. If both spouses agree to the terms of the divorce, this is called an uncontested divorce. Uncontested divorces are generally quicker than contested divorces, as there are fewer issues that need to be decided. In situations where spouses do not agree on the terms of the divorce, this is called a contested divorce. Because of the nature of contested divorces, they will almost certainly elongate the divorce period. 

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Is There a Mandatory Separation Period in Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on August 13, 2023 in Divorce

Wheaton, IL divorce lawyerGetting a divorce is an experience no one wants to go through. Yet each day, couples across Illinois decide to end their marriage and thus begin the less-than-pleasant process of getting divorced. Each state in the United States has its own set of laws governing divorce proceedings, and these laws can vary significantly. In Illinois, couples seeking a divorce may wonder if there is a mandatory separation period. 

If you have decided to begin the process of dissolving your marriage, contact an Illinois divorce lawyer to obtain the legal representation you need to ensure the divorce settlement you pursue can be one that favors you and your interests.

Understanding No-Fault Divorce

Illinois is among the states that have adopted a “no-fault” divorce system. Under this system, a spouse seeking a divorce is not required to prove their spouse took part in any wrongful conduct during their marriage that led to the disintegration of the marriage. Classic reasons for divorce, such as infidelity or abandonment, are considered non-relevant as a reason for getting a divorce. Instead, irreconcilable differences - which means the relationship has broken down to the point of no return - are the only grounds for divorce.

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How Do You File for Divorce in Illinois?

 Posted on August 08, 2023 in Divorce

 Wheaton, IL divorce lawyerFiling for divorce is a complex process filled with various legal steps and requirements. If you are considering getting a divorce in Illinois, it is essential to fully understand the necessary procedures to ensure a smooth and successful dissolution of your marriage. Today, we will outline key steps you need to take when filing for divorce in Illinois. As you move through the process of dissolving your marriage, think of your attorney as a resource and guide as you work through this difficult process. 

Are You Eligible for a Divorce? 

To file for divorce in Illinois, you or your spouse must have been a state resident for at least 90 days before filing. Ensuring you or your spouse meet these eligibility requirements is the first step towards dissolving your marriage.

Grounds for Divorce

Illinois operates as a no-fault divorce state. This means neither spouse is required to prove or assign blame to their partner for wrongdoing during the course of the marriage for the divorce to be granted. Irreconcilable differences are the only grounds for divorce in the state. Essentially, irreconcilable differences mean that the spouses have agreed that the marriage can no longer be saved.

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Avoid Making These Critical Mistakes During Your Divorce

 Posted on August 06, 2023 in Divorce

Wheaton, IL divorce lawyerDivorce is often an emotionally turbulent and legally complicated process with life-altering implications for the couple going through it and the family unit as a whole. As with any important process, it is crucial to approach it cautiously and avoid making mistakes that could jeopardize your financial security, emotional well-being, and the outcome of the case. 

Today, we will discuss some common errors people make during the divorce process and provide insights on how to avoid them. By being aware of these critical mistakes and taking steps to prevent their occurrence, you can lay the groundwork for a smoother divorce and a better future. If you have any questions as your divorce case proceeds, work with your attorney to ensure you make the best decisions possible for your case.

Trying to Do it Yourself

While it is true that there is no law that says you have to hire a divorce attorney when getting a divorce, trying to navigate the process alone is a recipe for disaster. Even in the most friendly circumstances, failing to hire a divorce lawyer can result in a divorce settlement that will not be in your best interest. Furthermore, it will likely also mean that the process is more stressful. You will have to read the law as well as any relevant case law, do all the paperwork yourself, gather any evidence, and potentially cross-examine your spouse and their witnesses. This process is best left to the professionals. 

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