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Recent blog posts

DuPage County paternity lawyersIn an alarmingly high number of divorce cases in which the mother is awarded sole-custody, along with child support from the father, the paying parent will look for any means to justify not paying the payments. In fact, approximately 25.9% of sole-custody parents owed child support in 2013 did not receive a single cent from their former partner. One of the most common ways in which fathers attempt to avoid these payments is through the use of a DNA paternity test. If you are fighting for child support and your former partner demands a DNA test, alert your attorney and seek skilled assistance immediately.

Establishing Paternity in Illinois

Here in the state of Illinois, parentage can be established in a number of ways: If both of the involved parties sign a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity (VAP) form, if the Illinois courts issue an order of paternity, and if an Administrative Paternity order is issued by the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services.  

If parentage has not been established through any of the measures above, a DNA test can be ordered, either voluntarily or in the courtroom. If parentage is officially established, parents have a responsibility to provide for their children, either through custodial responsibilities or child support payments. Unfortunately, ensuring that you receive the child support payments you deserve can be a complicated process.

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DuPage County family law attorneysEvery year, more than 2 million American couples decide to tie the knot. While weddings are a beautiful celebration of love, they can cost a lot of money. Couples throughout the United States spend a collective $72 billion on weddings on an annual basis. Still, while a wedding can cost you a hefty sum of money on the night of your marriage (the average wedding budget is approximately $20,000), that money pales in comparison to the potential financial impact of a costly divorce. Developing a postnuptial agreement, after your marriage can be critically important to ensuring that you remain financially stable in the event of a divorce.

What is a Postnuptial Agreement?

Explaining to your fiance that you may have resources that you want to protect in the event of a divorce can be a difficult conversation to have. Yet, in many cases, the time to talk about protecting your financial future is after the wedding. A postnuptial agreement is a written agreement that the parties establish sometime after the marriage has been finalized. It is meant to settle the couple’s assets and affairs if they separate in the future. A postnuptial agreement can ensure that you and your family will have a stable financial future if you and your spouse ever decide to separate.

How to Develop a Postnuptial Agreement

The notion of a postnuptial agreement is a fairly new concept within American law. Postnuptial agreements finally became a common practice in the early 1970s, as more American couples began to separate. A postnuptial agreement can only be finalized if the agreement is in written form. It is also important to note that all postnuptial agreements must be voluntary. If a judge believes that a postnuptial agreement was forced onto one of the spouses, the postnuptial agreement will be considered null and void. A postnuptial agreement will only be finalized if all parties have disclosed the full extent of their assets. A spouse cannot hide significant assets from another spouse and still develop a valid postnuptial agreement.

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Posted on in Divorce

Illinois divorce lawyersWhen preparing for a divorce, many people do not want to think about the logistical side of the separation process. A divorce represents a monumental change in a couple’s life, as the two parties will likely face a much different living situation, daily routine, and lifestyle. While the divorce process can be emotional and difficult to process, it is also complicated. As you prepare for your divorce, there are a few steps you should take to ensure that you and your family will be financially comfortable, moving forward.

Find a Divorce Attorney You Can Trust: Once you have made the decision to pursue a divorce, it is time to move forward and begin thinking about all the logistics that come with a separation. The best place to start is by hiring a quality divorce attorney. Choosing an attorney quickly can give you time to prepare for potential court hearings and litigation. When looking for a divorce attorney, it is important to ask yourself a few key questions: How much experience does this firm have? Does my personality work with the prospective attorney? Can I trust them?  

Communicate Your Priorities: Once you have answered the questions above and have chosen an attorney, it is time to get to work. The first step that you can take in working with your attorney is to communicate what assets are most important to you as your divorce case moves forward. Do you own a house that has been in your family for generations? Is a sole-custody parenting plan your number one priority? Communication is key in developing the best working relationship with your attorney.

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Illinois prenuptial agreement lawyersWhen couples are getting ready to tie the knot, they are usually in the midst of a deep love that seems like it could never end. While you should always believe that your marriage will last a lifetime, it is sometimes wise to prepare for the possibility of a separation, down the road. Of course, facing the potentiality of a divorce with your fiance can be difficult, but by planning ahead and signing a prenuptial agreement, you can help ensure that your family will maintain a financially healthy future, even if your marriage ends in a divorce. If you are readying for a marriage, speak with a legal representative to discuss the benefits of developing a prenuptial agreement, prior to your wedding.

Who Should Look Into a Prenuptial Agreement?

A prenuptial agreement is an agreement that is made by potential spouses, prior to their marriage. It is designed to establish how the couple will handle the allocation of resources, distribution of debt, and other financial issues, in the event of a divorce. A prenuptial agreement is officially established once the marriage is finalized. While many people believe that the establishment of a prenuptial agreement is unromantic or pessimistic, there are many scenarios in which a prenuptial agreement can alleviate stress and help the couple avoid future disputes, down the road.

Protecting Your Family: If you have children from a prior marriage, the development of a prenuptial agreement can ensure that your children will have access to their inheritance. While a second marriage can be a new lease on life and a path into a wonderful relationship, it should be noted that 67% of second marriages end in divorce.

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Wheaton child custody lawyersWhen raising children, parents make a conscious decision to put the needs of their child before their own. Raising children can be nerve-wracking, stressful, and challenging, so it can be helpful to have a solid parenting team. Unfortunately, in the aftermath of a divorce, the parenting unit of father and mother is severely altered. When deciding how to approach your child custody case, it is important to know the benefits of various types of parenting plans. If you believe that sole-custody parenting is the best option for you and your family, you should fully understand the benefits and potential drawbacks.

The Benefits of Sole-Custody Parenting

A sole-custody parenting plan is, in some cases, the best option for a parent and their children. Sole-custody parenting can enable a child to maintain a certain level of consistency in their academic schedule, extra-curricular activities, and living situation. If you and your former spouse no longer have a relationship that can work as a functioning parenting team, it is likely the best option for one parent to be awarded sole custody. In cases of domestic abuse, a sole-custody parenting plan is almost always the best option.

The Potential Negatives of Sole-Custody Parenting

As mentioned above, sole-custody parenting can be the right option for a number of reasons, but a parenting plan that only involves one parent can come with some negatives. Children only living with one parent are more likely to fall below the poverty line, according to statistics compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau. These financial concerns are, in large part, due to the fact that only approximately 50% of custodial mothers have child support plans established in court. Out of those established plans, 25% of mothers expecting to receive child support never do. A sole-custody parenting plan can also be difficult for children to cope with emotionally. Sole-custody means that the child will likely have a less significant (or even non-existent) relationship with the other parent.

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