When Illinois couples go through a divorce and one spouse has earned less than the other or has not worked at al, that person may be able to claim Social Security benefits on the higher-earning spouse's work record. However, this does not reduce the benefits available to the higher-earning spouse.
The holiday season is a time to sing well-beloved Christmas carols, eat memory-rich food, spend time with those you hold dear and offer gifts to the ones you love most. After divorce, this time of year can become tricky with children, deciding who gets which days, scheduling pick-ups and drop-offs, and determining how to handle presents. This year, the best gift you can give your kids is peaceful, happy memories with both parents, together or separately.
A stepparent adoption occurs when a stepparent adopts his or her marital partner's child. Illinois residents who are considering adopting their stepchild should consider all of the positive and negative issues that may arise.
Last time, we began speaking about cohabitation agreements in Illinois, and how these documents can help unmarried couples protect their assets in the event of separation and death. As we noted, crafting an enforceable cohabitation agreement in Illinois can be tricky and it is important to work with an experienced attorney to ensure it is valid and enforceable.
Previously, we wrote about a recent Illinois Supreme Court decision which highlighted the need for unmarried couples in Illinois to take steps to protect their assets in the event of separation. This is an especially important issue to address when an unmarried couple plans on commingling their assets, since doing so makes it difficult, if not impossible in some cases, to determine which assets belongs to which party.
Protecting oneself financially is important whenever a long-standing relationship fails. This is as important for unmarried couples as it is for married couples. In some ways, it is more important for unmarried couples given that state law does not provide any special entitlements.
We previously began looking at the issue of spousal maintenance or support, specifically how Illinois courts determine whether a spouse is entitled to maintenance. Picking up where we left off last time, if a judge determines it is just to award maintenance to a spouse, the amount and duration of the award needs to be determined.
In divorce, it is critical to work with an experienced attorney who can help ensure a fair settlement is reached with respect to assets and debts. Property division in Illinois, is governed by the principle of equitable distribution, and state law requires courts to come to ensure that property and debts are divided in a manner that is “just and equitable.”
In our last post, we began looking at the topic of parental alienation and how parents can address it. Parental alienation can, of course, be very harmful to children, and it is therefore a concern of the court when a parent displays behaviors which suggest he or she is attempting to turn a child against the other parent or negatively impact the child’s relationship with the other parent.
Careful communication is critical to helping resolve disputes, particularly emotional disputes. In child custody cases, this is especially true given the attachment parents have around issues of custody. This is partly what underlies recent changes made to state law concerning custody issues.