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Joliet divorce lawyerFor married couples who own a home, figuring out who, if anyone, gets to keep it is often one of the most difficult parts of the divorce process. However, it is important not to overlook the challenges for divorcing couples who rent a home or apartment together. If you and your spouse are renters, you may not have to deal with the complexities of dividing real estate property, but you may still face conflict when it comes to deciding who will stay in the apartment and who will be responsible for paying rent as your divorce proceeds.

Rental Leases in Divorce

If you have decided to get a divorce, there is a good chance that you and your spouse want to start living separately. However, a rental lease can make this complicated. In many cases, the names of both spouses will be on the lease, which means that you both have a claim to stay there until the lease ends, and you both are obligated to continue paying rent.

If you and your spouse are on relatively good terms, you may be able to address these issues by reaching an agreement. For example, you could consider whether one of you has another viable place to stay, like with a friend or family member. If you have children, you might consider an arrangement in which the parent with primary childcare responsibilities will stay in your rental home so as to better maintain the children’s routine.

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Will County family law lawyerFor many couples, a prenuptial agreement is a useful tool to help each partner define and protect their interests in property and assets. Agreements that are written and willingly signed by both partners are generally legally binding and enforceable, including in the event of a divorce. However, they are not necessarily permanently set in stone. There are many reasons why you may wish to modify a prenup at some point during your marriage, and you should know that it is possible to do so.

How Do I Modify a Prenup?

In Illinois, the primary legal requirements for modifying a prenuptial agreement are the same as the requirements for creating a prenup in the first place. Namely, the modifications must be set down in writing, and both you and your spouse must sign the document indicating your agreement. You can also revoke a prenuptial agreement entirely through the same process. The most challenging part of modifying a prenup may be finding terms that you and your spouse both agree to. However, there are situations in which updating your agreement can be beneficial for both of you.

Reasons to Update a Prenuptial Agreement

You and your spouse may want to update your prenup if one of the following applies to you:

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Joliet IL family law attorneyDomestic abuse is a problem that affects millions of people throughout the United States, but many people are reluctant to admit that they have been victims or take action to protect themselves. If you, your child, or another loved one has suffered from abuse from someone in your household, you should know that it is possible to seek help through the Illinois legal system by petitioning for an order of protection. A protective order may be warranted in more situations than you would expect, and it is important to understand how to go about obtaining one.

Reasons to Petition For an Order of Protection

An Illinois order of protection can provide safety from many different forms of domestic abuse. Physical violence may be the most obvious form of abuse from which a person needs protection, but it is certainly not the only one. You can also file an order of protection in response to willful deprivation of food, shelter, medical care, and other needs, or in response to certain forms of emotional abuse, including threats, intimidation, harassment, and surveillance. If you believe that you or someone in your household has been victimized by any of these behaviors, you should consult with an attorney to understand your options for protection.

Can I File a Petition?

If you have been the victim of domestic abuse from your spouse, parent, sibling, or another member of your household, you have the right to petition the court for an order of protection for yourself, as well as your children who may be at risk. However, you need not be a victim yourself in order to file a petition. Illinois law also allows anyone to file for an order of protection on behalf of a minor child or a disabled adult who cannot file on their own. If, for example, you have witnessed abuse between other members of your household, or you are aware of abuse toward your child when they are staying with their other parent, you can take action to help protect the victim.

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Joliet IL divorce lawyerIf you have recently been through a divorce, you may be excited about the possibility of finding someone new to spend the rest of your life with. However, the thought of your former spouse doing the same may not be nearly as appealing. An ex’s remarriage can be difficult to deal with on a personal level, and it can also sometimes have legal implications when it comes to the terms of your divorce resolution. You should think carefully about how you handle this situation to avoid creating a hostile environment for everyone involved.

Emotionally Coping With Your Ex’s Remarriage

Whether it happens soon after divorce or several years later, news of your former spouse’s remarriage can reopen old wounds caused by the failure of your relationship, especially if you have not yet found a new partner yourself. It can be easy to let your emotions get the better of you and react irrationally, perhaps by lashing out at your ex, complaining about them to your friends and family and on social media, or even trying to sabotage their new relationship. If you are not careful, your behavior could cross into the realm of stalking or harassment, and you could be subject to criminal charges or an order of protection. Rather than giving in to your destructive urges, try talking to a therapist or trusted friend and focusing on your own work, hobbies, or relationships.

Effects on Spousal Maintenance

If your former spouse has been ordered to pay you maintenance after the divorce, you may find that they start to shirk their obligations after their remarriage. Getting remarried is not a valid reason to stop making payments, and if you cannot resolve your spouse’s nonpayment on your own, you have the right to petition the court for enforcement of the spousal support order. On the other hand, if you have been paying spousal support and you find out that your former spouse has remarried, you do have the right to stop making payments, and you should work with the court to terminate the maintenance order.

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Joliet IL family lawyerIf you and your partner are ready to commit to a life together in marriage, it is crucial that you can trust each other to make responsible financial decisions and respect each other’s property and financial goals. Similarly, if you are already married and your financial situation has recently changed, it is important to determine how you and your spouse will adapt to this new reality. A prenuptial or postnuptial agreement can often help to address these issues. When considering whether an agreement of this nature is the right choice, you should be aware of some of the property concerns that it can help you manage.

What Can an Illinois Prenuptial Agreement Do?

Provided that you and your spouse can agree to the terms, a prenup or postnup can help you do all of the following:

  • Define non-marital property - One of the most common reasons for creating a prenup is to protect the property that each spouse brings to the marriage. For example, a prenup can clearly define the amount of each spouse’s premarital retirement contributions, or ensure that a business or home remains the separate property of one spouse. A postnup can accomplish a similar purpose during the marriage, perhaps if a spouse wants to protect a newly acquired inheritance.

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