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Illinois divorce lawyersDivorce can be a costly endeavor, which is why parties are usually encouraged to plan and save for the process. Of course, if you are not the one who files, you may not have such a privilege. Instead, your spouse may catch you completely off-guard, with little to no resources at your disposal. What can you do to ensure you still have access to seasoned legal representation in such a situation? The following information explains. 

Avoid Discount and DIY Divorce Options

The internet is full of information on discount and do-it-yourself divorce options, but these methods can have a lasting and negative impact on the outcome of your case. It is also important to realize that everything from your financial well-being to the amount of time you receive with your children can be affected.

Begin Your Search for a Divorce Attorney

Since discount and DIY divorce methods are not viable options, there is only one option left to consider: hire an attorney. Just be sure to avoid the trap that many disadvantaged spouses fall into when they hire a lawyer; never hire based on cost alone. Instead, ask for referrals from friends and search for reviews online. Then, when you have narrowed your choices down, start scheduling consultations. Share the details of your case with them and listen carefully to their responses. Are they in-tune with your needs and concerns? Do they seem pre-occupied with winning the case, or are they supportive of your desires to negotiate or settle fairly? 

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Illinois divorce lawyersAlthough divorcing parties in Illinois are not required to obtain legal assistance, many find that their outcomes are improved with it. Of course, having an attorney during your divorce means you must first choose the one that most closely fits your wants and needs. Learn how to do this, and discover how the specific details of your divorce may impact your decision, with help from the following information.

Consider What Type of a Divorce You Want

Before you hire a divorce lawyer, it is important to know what type of divorce you would like to pursue. More specifically, would your case be better served through mediation, collaborative divorce, or litigation? Each works differently, and the role of your attorney will change, depending on which option seems most appropriate for your situation. Furthermore, the type of attorney you need may change, depending on the preferred divorce course. As an example, parties may want to search for a divorce lawyer with extensive litigation experience if the marriage has a history of domestic violence or asset hiding.

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invalid marriage, DuPage County divorce attorneysIt is possible for a marriage to be considered invalid under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. When this is the case, a couple may end their marriage through a process known as annulment. Annulments are different from divorces for multiple reasons, the most important of which is that a couple's marriage must somehow violate the laws outlined in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act.

It is important to contact an experienced divorce attorney to begin the annulment process. Annulments, like divorces, must go through the court system and be finalized by a judge. The process of completing an annulment is known as nullification.

Annulment vs. Divorce

The fundamental difference between a divorce and an annulment is simple: when a couple gets divorced, they complete the legal process of ending a valid marriage. The couple is eligible to divide their jointly-owned property and the lesser-earning spouse may seek spousal maintenance from his or her former partner. With an annulment, the couple's marriage is legally considered to never have happened. This precludes the couple from dividing their property and seeking spousal maintenance in many cases.

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Posted on in Divorce

divorce, life after divorce, stress, DuPage County family law attorneys, Illinois divorce lawyerThe breakdown of a couple’s marriage is usually a difficult experience to endure. Divorce can involve a total lifestyle change for those involved, not to mention the many feelings and emotions that it can bring up. A recent article suggests ways to cope with the unsettling and painful feelings that often accompany divorce.

Moving on After Divorce

One thing that most people probably agree on is that divorce is often hurtful, no matter the reasons or circumstances surrounding it. Divorce not only causes feelings of loss and disappointment, but also brings with it a disruption of routine and other relationships, as well as uncertainty about the future.

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cohabitation, divorce, marriage, Illinois divorce attorney, family law in DuPage CountyIn the past, conservative views about what constituted appropriate action on behalf of a couple prior to getting married dominated public opinion. Everything from living together to premarital sex was frowned upon. While some people may still hold these views to some extent, there has definitely been a shift in what couples are doing before getting married these days, and a new study says it’s not nearly as bad as many previously thought.

Cohabitation Before Marriage

A recently published article discussed not only the prevalence of cohabitation before marriage, but whether it has any real effect on the success of the marriage once it occurs. Over the last five decades, it is estimated that the rate of couples who live together before getting married has increased by about 900 percent. Two-thirds of marriages that occur today are between couples who have already lived together for 31 months, on average. Previous studies indicated that couples who lived together before marriage were 33 percent more likely to divorce than their counterparts who waited to live together until after the marriage ceremony took place.

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children of divorce, DuPage County Family Law Attorney, DuPage County family lawyerDivorce can be a stressful and emotional time, particularly when children are a point of concern. While many people may be certain about their desire to divorce from their spouse, most are less sure about the effects such a decision may have on their children, and may put off a divorce in an effort to protect them. However, some research indicates that perhaps parents should not be so worried about the effect their divorce will have on their kids.

Children Likely to Recover

At the outset, it is probably safe to say that many children of divorce feel displaced and disrupted by their parents’ divorce. About 1.5 million children in the United States go through this each year. Despite this, researchers are saying that a much smaller portion of those children deal with significant problems as the result of divorce in the short or long term. In other words, children are likely to recover rapidly from any negative feelings they initially have after learning of their parents’ divorce. A 2002 study showed than many of the negative emotions children experience, including anxiety, anger, shock, or disbelief, are short-term effects. These feelings are likely to decrease or completely cease after two years, with only a minority of kids continuing to experience negative emotions longer than that.

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Posted on in Divorce

family time, divorce, child custody, lawyer, attorney, family tips, Illinois family lawyerEvery parent is probably aware of the constant struggle between home life and career. Each aspect of a parent’s life demands time, effort, and attention. With so much energy required, many parents may feel they are not spending an adequate amount of time on a specific area of their life. This situation likely affects many married parents, but may be felt even more acutely by those single or divorced parents who are attempting to maintain a home and a relationship with their children without support from a partner.

Work-Life Balance

A recent article offered several suggestions for ways to increase the amount of time mothers can spend with their children, but surely parents of both genders can heed the advice.

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infidelityIt often seems as though it is only a matter of time before we hear of a new political scandal in the media regarding infidelity or other transgressions by our elected officials. Oftentimes, their actions have consequences, not only in the form of public opinion affecting their professional lives, but also in their personal lives as well. The latest such incident involves a married Republican congressman from Louisiana, Representative Vance McAllister.

McAllister’s Transgression

McAllister was captured on video participating in less than savory behavior. In the dark, with his shirt untucked, he is seen approaching a woman and then embracing her with a kiss. It was revealed that the woman in the recording was an aide who worked with the congressman, and was also married.

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DuPage County divorce attorney, Illinois divorce lawyer, divorce lawyer, attorneyIf you are considering divorce, you may have several concerns regarding the process, including the prospect of hiring a divorce attorney. Some may be tempted to attempt the process without representation. However, doing so may prove to have several drawbacks and will likely affect the outcome of your case.

Drawbacks and Dangers

Divorce usually involves a large amount of legal documents and complicated paperwork that needs to be read and sorted through. The task can not only be an unpleasant one, but also one that not everyone is qualified to handle. At the outset, a divorce case may seem straightforward, but things can very easily take a wrong turn and become much more involved, leaving the unrepresented in way over their heads. Those parties who choose not to hire an attorney can also cause the whole process of divorce to move much slower than it otherwise would, frustrating the judge and other parties involved.

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division of property IMAGEIf you are going through a divorce, there is more to consider than the physical separation from your spouse. Especially if you have been married a long time, the division of property can be the most complicated and difficult step of the proceeding. According to the Illinois General Assembly and the state’s Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, Illinois is an equitable distribution state. This means that all property acquired during the marriage will be considered for equitable distribution, regardless of whose name is on the deed. The only possessions that will not be considered for 50/50 distribution upon divorce are those that are categorized as separate property. According to the Huffington Post, separate property generally includes (but is not limited to):

  • Property owned by either spouse before the marriage;
  • Inheritance received (either before or after the marriage);
  • A gift received by the husband or wife from a third party;
  • Payment from a personal injury claim.

But it is important to remember, according to the Huffington Post that, “separation property can lose its separate property status if you commingle it with marital property or vice versa.” It can become even more complicated when divorcing couples take into consideration the tax implications of assets, however—something many couples take for granted, according to the Chicago Tribune. One financial planner who assists divorcing couples told the Tribune that, “the biggest assets most families have are the house and retirement plan. But the house can be sold without paying tax, while the retirement plan cannot.” This is just one reason why it is crucial to seek the counsel of a legal professional when going through a divorce. If you or someone you know is looking for a divorce attorney in the Chicago area, contact the Davi Law Group today.

Divorce Attorney IMAGEWhen going through a divorce, one of the most important things you can do to ensure that the process goes smoothly is to hire the right divorce attorney. At the Davi Law Group, we provide personalized attention to all our clients so that they can begin to move on with their lives. When going through a divorce there are several things to keep in mind in order to stay on top of the proceeding—choosing the right divorce attorney is paramount. “It is difficult to know where to turn when you are faced with divorce,” the Huffington Post reports. There are several things to keep in mind when initiating proceedings, according to the Huffington Post, that will help your divorce go as smoothly as possible. The first is to be realistic. An attorney from the Davi Law Group will help you to dissolve your assets, resolve custody and visitation issues, and determine maintenance / alimony agreements. A divorce attorney is not a therapist or marriage counselor, however. “You need to realize that divorce is a legal process… while you might want [your divorce attorney] to listen to your anger, frustration, pain and sadness, that is not their job,” reports the Huffington Post. At the Davi Law Group we handle your case with sincerity and tact, but we also do our best to keep your costs low by avoiding tasks for which we are not trained. We always work in the vein of what is best for you. Another thing a person can do during a divorce to make it as smooth as possible, according to the Huffington Post, is to stay focused on the goal and to know what you want. An attorney from the Davi Law Group can help you determine how best to proceed, but only you can know your personal goals and desires. If you have determined your desired outcome, an attorney from the Davi Law Group can help to make it happen. If you or someone you know is looking for a divorce attorney in Naperville, contact the Davi Law Group today.

property splitOne of the major causes of contention during a divorce is the division of property.  While a judge can control the distribution, it does not make the fighting stop.  Arguing about property division can also add a lot of time to the litigation process and more legal costs.  Since both spouses are responsible for accumulating the property of a marriage, it can be more advantageous to divide this property together as well. The first step is to create a record of what is commonly owned.  It is important to include all assets or risk the penalty of omitting property.  Then it is important to assign a monetary value to each item either together or with the help of a third party.  For items like cars, houses, and other expensive and complex assets, it will be necessary to consult an expert to value them.  Next go through the list together to find if it is more logical for one spouse to continue owning the property.  If it seems necessary for equality, the assigned values of each asset can allow a tally for each spouse. If assigning a logical owner does not work, there are other ways to accomplish a split as a couple.
  • Sell the property in a garage sale and divide the cash equally to each spouse
  • Use sealed bids on each asset where the highest big wins that item.  But then the losing spouse is awarded an equalizing payment.
  • Use an alternating turn system where each spouse can choose regardless of value.  First pick is determined by a coin flip.  Any discrepancy in total value can be equalized later by taking debt.
  • Hold an auction where each spouse bids on each item, with bids increasing by five percent to insure that bids aren’t constantly a dollar more.
If spouses can draft a property division agreement, then the divorce court can uphold it in the final settlement.  Occasionally the judge will question if an agreement seems unfair.  But the direction of a divorce attorney can ensure that the agreement is in your best interest.  Contact an experienced divorce attorney in DuPage County to review your options for dividing marital property.

The emotional toll of a divorce is not lost on anyone, and it’s no secret that anyone who’s gone through or is going through a divorce is likely to experience some financial setbacks. The trick to maintaining your finances throughout a divorce is to do some serious planning beforehand, sometimes even before you bring up the idea of divorce with your spouse. The first obvious cost to a divorce is the hiring of a qualified divorce attorney—which each spouse will need to do. “Nonetheless,” according to US News and World Report, “people can save a lot on legal fees if the case requires less ‘discovery’ work—meaning clients gather the necessary financial documents on their own time, rather than leaving it to their attorney.” This, of course, means knowing which documents are necessary to search for, and where to look if you’re unsure.   One major way to save on the financial burden of divorce is to attempt to find a middle grounds with your ex and “consider aiming for an uncontested divorce,” according to US News and World Report. This means providing mandatory disclosures, which “require both parties to produce a large number of financial documents.” A divorce attorney can help you to determine which of these documents you’ll need, and may be able to help you obtain them if necessary. The financial documents you’ll need for a divorce are not few in number, and the search for them can “prove overwhelming… especially if you are a stranger to your financial situation,” according to US News and World Report. This can sometimes affect women more often than men, which means that a woman going through a divorce will need to be even more financially aware, especially if she was not the primary earner. To begin the arduous process of organizing your financials during a divorce, the most important first task is to hire a qualified family law attorney. If you or someone you know is considering divorce, don’t go through it alone. Contact a dedicated DuPage County divorce lawyer today.

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Posted on in Divorce

It may seem impossible in the throes of divorce to ever imagine forgiving your ex for the emotional pain and possible hardship caused in the failed relationship. The most important aspect in a divorce to moving on from the pain and starting a new life is to find a way to forgive your ex, and allow yourself some distance and reflection from the mess. One easy way to do this is to seek the counsel of a qualified divorce attorney, who can help you sort through the nuts and bolts of a divorce so you’re more able to deal with the emotional fallout. According to the Examiner, “forgiveness is not reconciliation. Reconciliation is a different step that may or may not happen. But forgiveness is crucial.” This high ideal isn’t just an acceptance of an apology, but a rooting deep within to find the peace it takes to release someone form the pain he or she has caused you. Forgiveness is the first step to a good divorce—the next is to try to make sure that you’re both on board with the process as it begins. Many couples seek therapy at the end of their marriage for help going through a divorce. According to the Independent, “professional counselors no longer necessarily aim to glue you both back together like a broken vase. They want what is best for both of you, and they may help both of you to deal with the divorce in a more rational and civilized way.” This is especially true if one party isn’t quite ready to call it quits. If you or someone you know is going through a divorce, don’t do it alone. A qualified attorney can help you to sort out the logistics, so you’re able to focus on getting your life back together. Contact a dedicated Illinois divorce attorney today. Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

There are several different aspects of divorce that have to be considered if divorce is on the table, but the most complicated issues deal with how the split will affect children if the divorcees are parents. Conventional wisdom is that divorce has the potential to ruin a child’s understanding of intimacy, and can leave him or her feeling lost, or without anchor. More recent studies show that if the marriage was wrought with conflict, divorce may actually be better for the kids. According to Psychology Today, this is more truth than the former. University of Nebraska sociologist Paul Amato has recently released a study in which he followed 2,000 families for nearly two decades. “If there has been lots of conflict in the marriage, the children actually do better if there is a divorce,” he told Psychology Today. Yet the hardest hit in a divorce, according to Amato and reported in the magazine, “are the children of marriages in which there were not high levels of hostility before a break-up. The husband and wife just didn’t drift along and the kids don’t notice anything’s missing.” For these kids, the dissolution of the marriage, rendering them adrift between two homes, floating, per-se, between both parents, is an unwelcome disturbance rather than a culmination of an already-disturbed childhood. Amato believes that “low-conflict divorce undermines kids’ sense of trust and causes them great psychological distress as they grow older.” It’s these kids, not all children of divorce, who have difficulty forming trusting relationships later in life, and are “particularly unhappy” as adults. It’s likely because, for the child, there was nothing visibly wrong. Children, of course, are unable to grasp the lower frequency wavelengths of their parents’ relationships, and so are unable to see how divorce could have been better for their parents if they weren’t visibly unhappy. Bringing a third party into a divorce, in the way of a qualified attorney, can help a family to sort out the difficult situations such as this. Don’t go through it alone. Contact a dedicated Chicago-area family law attorney today. Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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