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Recent Blog Posts

Co-Parenting Tips for Surviving Summer Break

 Posted on April 05,2023 in Family Law

Joliet Child Custody LawyerAlthough it is hard to believe, summer break is just around the corner. For children, the end of the school year is often an event that kids look forward to all year. For divorced and unmarried co-parents, however, the end of the school year can bring significant challenges.

Managing a co-parenting schedule in which both parents have parenting time is difficult under the best circumstances. It can be even harder to maintain the schedule and communicate with the other parent about child-related concerns during summer break. If you are a divorced parent sharing custody, consider the following co-parenting tips this spring and summer.

Communicate Early and Often With the Other Parent

Talking to your ex may not be your favorite thing in the world, but it is important to keep the lines of communication open. If your ex has a history of forgetting important child-related information or your relationship with him or her is contentious, it may be best to communicate through written words. Consider using e-mail or text messages to discuss child-related schedules or other information. This ensures that there is a record of what was said and when.

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Planning to Move? Make Sure You Understand Illinois Parental Relocation Laws 

 Posted on March 24,2023 in Family Law

Will County Family Law AttorneyIf you or your child's other parent intends to move to a new home, it is important that you understand the legal requirements for doing so. When someone is co-parenting with an ex, moving is not as simple as packing up the belongings and driving to the new residence. Depending on the distance between the current residence and the new residence, there may be specific steps you need to take to be able to move with your child.

Determine if Your Move Counts as a Relocation

To understand the rights and responsibilities regarding parental relocations, you must first determine if the intended move meets the criteria for relocation under Illinois law. The location of the child's primary residence and the distance between the current residence and new residence determines whether or not a move counts as a relocation.

If you live in one of the following "collar" counties, a move of 25 miles or greater is considered a relocation. If your intended relocation is less than 25 miles, no further action is needed.

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Does the Amount of Parenting Time You Have Determine Child Support?

 Posted on March 17,2023 in Child Custody

Joliet Child Support LawyerParenting time, sometimes called visitation in casual conversation, is the time that a parent supervises a child and meets his or her everyday needs. In Illinois, the amount of parenting time a parent has is described in the parenting plan. Divorced and never-married parents may be able to negotiate the terms of their parenting plan or, if they cannot agree, the court will issue a parenting plan.

Many people have questions about how parenting time affects child support. Do you pay less in child support if you have the children more often? Can a parent reduce his or her child support obligation by taking on a greater amount of parenting time?  

Child Support Laws in Illinois

In 2023, Illinois uses a child support calculation methodology called “Income Shares.” Each parent’s net income and the number of children shared between the parents determine the overall amount of financial support paid by the parents. The parent with the majority of the parenting time receives child support payments from the parent with a lesser amount of parenting time. Since he or she has the child most of the time, the parent with the majority of the parenting time provides his or her financial support by paying for child-related expenses directly.

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Child Custody Myths Every Illinois Parent Should Be Aware of

 Posted on March 10,2023 in Family Law

Markham Parenting Plan LawyerWhether you are unmarried or planning to divorce, child custody matters may be at the top of your mind. In Illinois, child custody is broken down into two main components. The allocation of parental responsibilities is the allocation of decision-making authority over the child. Parental responsibilities address questions such as where the child will go to school or what type of medical care the child will receive. Parenting time is the second component in a child custody case. Parenting time is the time a parent watches the child and is directly responsible for the child’s safety and well-being.   

Child custody issues in a divorce or family law can be confusing, and there are many myths surrounding these complex issues. Read on to learn more.

Myth: Mothers Always Get the Majority of the Parenting Time and Parental Responsibilities

Many people assume that mothers are favored over fathers in a child custody case. However, Illinois law does not differentiate between women and men with regard to family law matters. Both mothers and fathers have the same right to parenting time and parental responsibilities. However, courts do seek to preserve the status quo in many cases. So, if a child has traditionally spent more time with his mother, the court may award her a greater share of the parenting time or responsibilities.

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When is Supervised Visitation Required by an Illinois Court? 

 Posted on March 03,2023 in Family Law

Orland Park Family Law AttorneyCourts generally presume that both parents are capable of providing adequate supervision and care for a child. Unless there is a reason to believe otherwise, parents are generally given the right to have unrestricted parenting time (previously called visitation) with their child.

However, the child's best interests are always the top priority in a child custody or divorce case. If there are concerns about a child's safety or a parent's ability to provide a safe environment for the child, the court may order supervised visitation.

Supervised Visitation and Other Parenting Time Restrictions

In some family law cases, a parent or other party raises concerns about the other parent's ability to keep a child safe. In a situation like this, they can petition the court for a parenting time restriction. There are many different types of parenting time restrictions, including limitations on the amount or frequency of parenting time, limitations on who may be present during parenting time, or requirements regarding the transportation of children between the two parents' homes. The court may also require parenting time to be supervised.

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Temporary Child Custody Orders in Illinois 

 Posted on February 23,2023 in Family Law

Homewood Child Custody LawyerThe divorce process can take months if not years - especially if the couple has children or complex finances. Divorcing parents may wish to use a temporary child custody order to decide and formalize their parenting responsibilities during the divorce process. In Illinois, temporary child custody orders are issued to protect the best interests of children and outline parenting time, legal decision-making authority, and other details of the parenting arrangements. Having a temporary child custody order can ensure that both parents understand their child-related rights and responsibilities. A temporary order can also promote consistency in the child's life and ease the transition into a two-home family. 

Temporary Allocation of Parenting Time and Responsibility

If you are getting divoced, you may want to get a temporary child custody order or, as it is called in Illinois, a temporary allocation of parenting time and responsibiltiy order. If you and the other parent agree on the terms of the order, you will not need to attend a hearing to get a temporary allocation order. However, if you and the other parent disagree about how parental responbilties (decision-making authority) and parenting time (time spent caring for the child) should be handled, you will attend a hearing. At the hearing, you will each be given a chance to express your opinions and provide any evidence that supports your positions. The court will evaluate the evidence and make a determination. 

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Should I Keep the House in My Divorce?

 Posted on February 09,2023 in Divorce

Orland Park Divorce LawyerFor most people, their home is the single most valuable asset they own. Whether it is a house, condominium, townhouse, or another type of property, it is likely that the bulk of your net worth is tied up in real estate. This is one reason that determining what to do with the house during a divorce is so important - and often so difficult.

There are seemingly countless legal, financial, and personal factors to consider when deciding what to do with the marital home during divorce. Selling the home may allow a couple to pay off joint debt and begin their post-divorce lives with a fresh start financially. However, this may also require uprooting children, moving to a new neighborhood, or living apart from family and friends.

If you plan to end your marriage and are struggling with this decision, consider reaching out to a divorce attorney experienced in property division matters for help.

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5 Reasons to Consider a Prenuptial Agreement Before You Get Married

 Posted on February 02,2023 in Family Law

Will County Prenup AttorneyPrenuptial agreements are legal contracts that specify spouses’ financial rights and responsibilities. For years, many people mistakenly assumed that prenuptial agreements were only necessary if a couple is extremely wealthy. However, more and more individuals of varying ages, races, and income levels are recognizing the benefits of signing a prenuptial agreement. If you are engaged to be married, here are five strong reasons to consider drafting a prenuptial agreement.

1.  To Protect Your Assets

If you have significant assets, such as real estate, investments, retirement assets, or high-value items such as artwork, you may want to consider getting a prenuptial agreement to protect those assets in the event of a divorce. A prenuptial agreement allows you to classify property as non-marital property and prevent the property from being transmuted into marital property during the marriage. Without a prenuptial agreement, your assets could be subject to division by the courts in the event of a divorce.

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Navigating Child Custody Disputes Involving LGBT Parents in Illinois

 Posted on January 27,2023 in Family Law

Markham Divorce LawyerIn Illinois and throughout the country, same-sex couples now have the right to marry, and with that comes the right to adopt or raise a child together. However, this also means that should these couples choose to separate or divorce, they can face complex child custody disputes.

If you are an LGBT parent facing a child custody dispute, it is important to understand your rights under the law. In Illinois, parents have equal rights when it comes to making decisions about their children's upbringing—regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. This blog post will explain the legal framework surrounding child custody disputes involving LGBT parents in the state of Illinois.

Unmarried Parents May Not Have Parental Rights

Parentage, formerly called “paternity,” refers to the legal child-parent relationship. A woman who gives birth to a child is that child’s legal parent. Her spouse is also the legal parent of the child. If the parents divorce, both parents have a right to parenting time and parental responsibilities.

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Taking the First Steps to Leave an Abusive Relationship 

 Posted on January 23,2023 in Domestic Violence

Orland Park Divorce LawyerDomestic violence touches the lives of people from all backgrounds, ethnicities, and lifestyles. It can take many forms, including physical abuse, verbal abuse, emotional abuse, financial control, and sexual abuse. Many people who are caught up in abusive relationships live lives filled with fear, anger, and confusion. They desperately wish to get out of the relationship, but they worry about the consequences of doing so.

If you are in an abusive relationship, know that you are not alone and that there is help available. It is important to remember that leaving an abusive partner can be dangerous, as abusers may become more violent when they feel threatened. With safety in mind, here are some tips for taking the first steps to leaving an abusive relationship.

Protecting Yourself When Leaving an Abusive Partner

Many people stay in abusive relationships for months, years, or even decades because they fear retaliation or simply do not know how to protect themselves when leaving the relationship. If you are ready to take back your life and leave a violent situation, consider the following:

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