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Wheaton family law attorneysPrenuptial agreements are not just for the rich. Instead, there are several scenarios in which this legal document can protect the vested parties in a possible divorce. Learn more by checking out these six situations in which a prenuptial agreement may be in your best interest. 

1. When Either Party Has a Considerable Amount of Wealth

Possession of a considerable amount of wealth is one of the most common reasons that couples choose to enter into a prenuptial agreement before marriage. Entering into this legal agreement before marrying lets you clearly define the rules for how wealth will be distributed in the event of a divorce. This rule also applies if one party earns more than the other at their job. 

2. If Either Party Owns a Business

If either you or your spouse owns a business, you may want to consider a prenup before getting married. Not only can this legal document protect your business and allow for proper allocation of its assets in the event of a divorce, but it can also define parameters on business operations and liability during the course of your marriage. 

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Wheaton family law attorneysCouples do not typically enter a marriage with the intention of divorcing. Sadly, divorce is the path that nearly half of all couples will take. What causes them to head that direction, and how can you avoid meeting the same fate in your impending marriage? The following information examines the most common causes of divorce, as well as how to avoid them, and it explains how a seasoned family law attorney can use a prenuptial agreement to protect your finances before your marriage even starts. 

Fighting Dirty

No matter how much you love your spouse, you are not going to agree on everything. How you handle those disagreements could predict whether or not you will one day divorce. Name-calling, shaming, blaming, and other nasty fighting tactics can strip away the trust and give each of you the sense that you are no longer in a loving partnership. Over time, that can degrade your marriage to the point of divorce. If you notice that you and your spouse are starting to fight dirty, consider marriage counseling before things get worse. 

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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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relationship coin flipMany couples struggle with the decision to end their relationship. They consider if it is the right choice to make, weighing the consequences of the action and hurt feelings and sadness that will likely arise in the process. While many people may make the decision to end their relationship after much thought and reflection, a recent article suggests that others may leave the final choice about the fate of their relationship up to the random act of flipping a coin.

Approaching Problems

Two authors, Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, recently wrote a book urging readers to approach their problems in unique ways. The book, titled ‘Think Like a Freak,’ focuses on encouraging people to start thinking about the world differently. The final chapter of the book is about the positive aspects of quitting. As opposed to the common advice regarding sticking it out through tough times, the authors instead suggest that sticking with something is not always beneficial. Instead, they say, people should quit sooner rather than later.

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marriage finance, debt, retirement, financial planning, Illinois family law attorneyThe time a couple spends engaged before their wedding ceremony is a special period of their relationship. Many discussions center around wedding planning, their love for one another, and their future plans. One conversation topic though that may be less popular is the sobering reality of finances. Even though a discussion about financial matters may not be as appealing as others during an engagement, it is an important one to have. A recent article gave engaged persons some advice on what questions to ask their future spouse when it comes to money matters.

10 Questions to Ask while Engaged

What is your credit score? This is an important piece of financial information since both of your credit scores may affect your ability to start a family, purchase a home, or buy a car. It is best to know what to expect going into your marriage and not after you have applied for a loan.

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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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marital homeUsually, when a couple decides to divorce, one of them leaves the marital home they previously shared. However, there are times when one spouse will refuse to leave the home despite the other’s demands. In that case, the spouse requesting that the other party leave may be forced to employ Illinois law in order to have their wishes granted.

 Illinois Law

Under certain circumstances, one spouse can force another to leave the marital home. Whether one spouse can force the other out of the marital home will depend on the specific facts of the situation, and if they can prove the necessary elements before the court. Under Illinois law, one spouse can secure exclusive possession of the marital home in two different ways.

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long term marriage, healthy marriage, happy couple, marriage tips, Illinois divorce lawyer, divorce attorneyRobert Levenson, UC Berkeley psychologist, became interested in studying marriage and divorce during the 1980’s, when he launched his longitudinal study with 156 couples in California. Levenson recruited couples from newspaper ads, public transit stations, senior centers, and churches, touching base with the couples every five years to learn about the challenges and triumphs the couples faced in their marriage.

The recorded conversations with the couples were coded for facial expressions, tones of voice, topics discussed, and body language.

Levenson found several different results from the study. He believes that couples who stayed married longer than 15 years were more likely to value and accept each other, and have given up on the pretense of trying to “change” their partners.

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Posted on in Divorce

healthy marriage, happiness, wedding, funding, Illinois marriage, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family lawyerThe federal government has invested hundreds of millions of dollars into programs that are designed to promote healthy marriages, but a new study has found this spending hasn’t impacted marriage or divorce trends the way they were intended.

By the end of the fiscal year, the government will have invested $800 in the Healthy Marriage Initiative to fund multiple programs to improve relationships.

Between 2000 and 2010, marriage rates continued to decline, especially in locations where a lot of Healthy Marriage Initiative funds were used. The study, conducted by the National Center for Family and Marriage Research at Bowling Green State University, reviewed more than $600 million federal dollars spent between the same period.

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