Families are loving and supportive — sometimes the only support one has. Unfortunately, families sometimes have legal issues, too. A couple gets married or gets divorced, and often this leads to many issues such as premarital agreements, property division, child custody, and child support. These issues can be extremely difficult, and sometimes impossible, for a family to resolve on their own. This is when a Mokena family law attorney is especially useful. An attorney will advise you on what the laws of the state say about these issues and can help the entire family come to a resolution that is favorable for all parties.
Below are just a few ways our family law attorneys can help with the most pressing issues.
When a marriage dissolves, it can be devastating for the entire family, particularly if there are children involved. Illinois is a no-fault divorce state, which means that the only grounds for divorce in the state are irreconcilable differences. This means that the marriage has broken down and that there is no chance for reconciliation. However, when there is fault involved in the divorce, such as when one spouse had an affair, the courts may take this into consideration when determining final terms pertaining to property division and other aspects of the divorce. Divorcing couples in Illinois have many different options, so it is important to speak to an attorney who can explain them all and can advise you on which is best for your situation.
One of the most difficult parts of any divorce is unquestionably child custody. Custody involves both physical custody and legal custody. Legal custody designates which parent will make decisions for the child, such as those regarding their education or religion. Physical custody indicates where the child will spend time physically. Physical custody can be granted as joint custody, sole custody, or shared custody. Courts will usually try to award both parents a portion of both legal and physical custody of their children.
What other states call alimony, Illinois calls spousal maintenance. This is not always awarded in a divorce, but if a spouse asks for it, the courts will take into consideration many factors. These include the job skills of each spouse, the financial means of each spouse, and the standard of living enjoyed by each spouse during the marriage. The courts will also typically use a formula to determine the amount of spousal maintenance, but in certain instances, such as in high net worth divorces, judges may deviate from this formula.
Illinois is an equitable distribution state, which means that the state will divide property in a divorce fairly, but not necessarily evenly. The courts will take a number of factors into consideration when determining how to split marital property. They will consider the length of the marriage, each spouse’s earning potential, what each spouse contributed to the marital estate during the marriage, and whether there is a premarital agreement in place.
Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements do not guarantee that a divorce will go smoothly, but they can help. Prenuptial agreements are drafted before marriage, while postnuptial agreements are drafted after a marriage has already taken place. These agreements can help with factors such as property division, although they will not affect decisions made on child support or child custody.
Under Illinois law, all parents are considered financially responsible for their children, regardless of whether the marriage lasts. Child support has changed considerably in Illinois recently and is now based on an income shares model. This means that the courts will take into account both of the parents’ incomes and determine child support payments based on that.
If you’re going through a divorce or considering it, do not take your chances by filing on your own. The Mokena family law attorneys at the Law Office of Demetrios N. Dalmares & Associates, Ltd. can help. We will help you file for divorce, and then negotiate with the other side to make sure you get the best terms possible. We will also help your divorce proceed as quickly as possible so you can get on with your life. Do not go through this alone. Call us today or contact us online to get the help you need.