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Tag Archives: DuPage County divorce lawyer

Illinois divorce lawyersDivorce is a complex legal process with many potential financial pitfalls. This may be especially true if there is a retirement account, such as a 401K to divide. Laws and rules of the plan must be adhered to carefully or the parties stand to lose far more than just their future financial security. There is also the risk of severe penalties and extreme financial loss as early as the finalization of one’s divorce. Thankfully, it is possible to mitigate (and potentially even avoid) such issues. Learn more in the following sections, including how the assistance of a seasoned, competent divorce attorney can help improve the outcome in your Illinois divorce case. 

The Risks of Dividing a 401K in Divorce 

Like all retirement plans, 401K pension plans have certain rules regarding early withdrawals (before age 591/2). Fail to follow them and you could face early withdrawal penalties from the plan administrator as well as taxation from the Internal Revenue System (IRS). Sadly, you can still lose money when you follow the rules of the plan. For example, you could lose money from losses or gains in the 401K if the divorce decree uses a percentage to divide the account, rather than an exact dollar amount.

Tips for Dividing a 401K in Your Illinois Divorce

While there are many pitfalls that one may experience while dividing a 401K during a divorce, there are a few strategies that can help you mitigate the risks. These include:

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DuPage County divorce lawyer, social media and divorceIt is common for people to remain plugged into their electronic devices for much of their day. Whether it is sharing pictures of their children, their dinner, or pets, posting images online has become a part of our daily lives. Moreover, those posts can also become part of a divorce proceeding.

What Kind of Communications are Admissible in a Divorce?

The communications you have can become admissible at trial. For example, an email or a text message can be admissible in court, and certain circumstances can even be subpoenaed. Social media posts can be used in a divorce proceeding as well. If one party fails to disclose a promotion at work, or boasts about being able to hide assets and then gloats about it on social media, those posts can become part of the trial.

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DuPage County divorce lawyer, purchase in anticipation of marriageIt is common for engaged couples to make purchases before their wedding day, with the intent that the two will use these items when they are united in marriage. Often, soon-to-be spouses will invest in real estate or other high-ticket items. However, when the unfortunate happens and the once-happy couple decides to divorce, there are often questions regarding this property and how it will be equitably divided during the divorce process. The Illinois divorce statute speaks to exactly this situation, defining these items as purchases “in anticipation of marriage.” You should discuss the specifics of any items you bought as a couple before your wedding day, especially since there have been recent changes to Illinois divorce law that became effective in 2016.

Marital Versus Non-Marital Property

Purchases made in anticipation of marriage come into play in the context of marital and non-marital property. Before a court will make an equitable distribution of property to spouses, it is first necessary to establish the classification of all assets. Then, a judge can divide marital assets and make a ruling that respective spouses can keep non-marital property. Under Illinois law, the spouses may also agree on the classification of marital versus non-marital property.

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 DuPage County divorce lawyer, low cost divorceSigns on CTA vehicles and other heavily trafficked areas around town are common. They may state, “Low Cost Divorce, Just $99 Flat Fee,” or other similar text. At first glance, a “low cost divorce” might seem like a good idea, especially if you and your spouse can agree on most factors involving your divorce. However, there is a lot of information these ads leave out, including hidden fees that make your total cost much higher than the $99 as advertised. As a warning about low cost divorce in Illinois, consider a few additional factors these firms will not tell you upfront.

Court Filing Fees Not Included

The fee you pay to a firm that handles low cost divorce is typically applied to the services provided. There are additional fees for filing the proper paperwork with the court clerk to initiate the dissolution of marriage proceedings. Depending on your circumstances, there may be other court costs which are not disclosed until after you have already started the process.

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Of all the tricky issues to sort out during a divorce, the equitable division of retirement benefits is among the most complicated. Because you have spent years working to earn your pension, fill your retirement fund, and otherwise prepare for your future, splitting these funds requires great care, and a considerable amount of technical know-how.

One good starting point, however, is knowing that only funds that were added to these accounts during the course of your marriage will be eligible for division between you and your spouse. Any money that you contributed to 401(k)s, pension plans, annuities, IRAs, or other types of retirement funds before your marriage will be yours, and yours alone after your divorce.

The Process of Dividing Your Benefits Fairly

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Abraham Lincoln A lawyer’s time and advice are his stock and trade. -Abraham Lincoln
Davi Law Group, LLC handles family law, estate planning and real estate matters for clients in Chicago and throughout the western suburbs including DuPage County, Will County, Kane County, Kendall County and Cook County and the cities of Aurora, Bloomingdale, Bolingbrook, Carol Stream, Darien, Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Geneva, Glen Ellyn, Hinsdale, Joliet, Kendall County, Lisle, Lombard, Naperville, Oak Park, Oak Brook, Oswego, Park Ridge, Roselle, St. Charles, Villa Park, Warrenville, Wheaton, Winfield, Woodridge and Yorkville, Illinois.
Warrenville Office
Address28371 Davis Parkway, Suite 103, Warrenville, IL 60555
Phone(630) 657-5052
Fax(888) 350-9195
Wheaton Office
Address1776 S. Naperville Road, Building A, Suite 105, Wheaton, IL 60189
Phone630-580-6373
Fax(888) 350-9195
Chicago Office
Address321 N. Clark Street, Suite 900, Chicago, IL 60654
Phone(312) 985-5676
Fax(888) 350-9195
Joliet Office
Address58 N. Chicago Street, Suite 102,
Joliet, IL 60432
Phone(815) 582-4901
Fax(888) 350-9195
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