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Rockford, Illinois Family Law Blog

What's post-secondary child support?

Illinois is somewhat unique in that family court judges have the option of ordering a divorced parent to pay what's known as "post-secondary child support."

Under the law, either or both parents (depending on their means) can be required to pay for their child's higher education expenses well after their 18th birthday. Parents can generally be required to keep paying until that child turns 23 years of age, although support can (rarely, and only with good cause) be extended until the child's 25th birthday.

Hiring a real estate agent during your divorce

You're getting a divorce -- and that means selling the house because there's no way that either you or your spouse can afford it alone.

The good news is that it's pretty much a seller's market out there right now. The bad news is that you and your spouse have to work together at least long enough to pick a real estate agent.

Can you change a child's name after a divorce?

After you and your ex split, it became increasingly clear that your ex wasn't planning to be around for any part of raising your child. Now, your child has come to resent even sharing the same last name as their father.

You certainly don't want to make your child wait until they're an adult to change their name, but what can you do? Plenty.

Could summer schedules throw custody plans for a loop?

Summer is finally here in all it's glory -- which means a lot of different things to people. For divorced parents, summer often means trying to navigate difficult waters surrounding the issue of custody and parenting time.

During the school year, kids and parents tend to fall into a fairly steady, comfortable routine. It can be easy to work out a custody and visitation schedule that accommodates the school schedule.

How you should handle debt when you divorce

Many spouses who divorce cite financial woes as one of the reasons for their split. It's not uncommon for spouses to engage in financial infidelity, whereby they make more or less than their partner is aware. Husbands and wives may also secretly take out credit cards or loans without telling their spouse. All of this can make for complex negotiations when a couple divorces.

While many joint debts get split up between the two of you, you may avoid having to take on some of those bills if your souse was secretly racking up debt without your knowledge.

What's a 'right of first refusal' in child custody?

Your ex-spouse has been placed on mandatory overtime at work -- so they're working much longer hours than normal. As a consequence, they're simply not available during their normally scheduled visitation.

So what happens to the kids? A "right of first refusal" clause can make the answers easier to figure out.

3 tips for preparing your finances ahead of divorce

If ending your marriage is inevitable, fragile emotions will often wage war with common sense, so it helps to adopt a business-like attitude. Your primary goal is to come out of the divorce with a secure future, but your financial situation may seem overwhelming. The more familiar you are with your current income, liabilities and assets, the easier it will be to create a plan for your post-divorce life.

Here are three tips for preparing your finances for divorce and beyond.

What happens if you don't pay child support in Illinois

Money's tight and you're worried about paying the rent or mortgage, keeping your car and putting food on the table. Is skipping a child support payment or two an option?

Not really. Skipping a child support payment is a risky proposition under any circumstances. Parents are generally expected to pay their fair share of support for their children, and skipping a few payments could deprive your child of some essential needs.

Here's what happens to your pension when you divorce

Divorce can be a difficult process for any couple. It can be even more complicated if it happens later in life, there are unequal financial circumstances and a spouse's pension comes into play.

Pensions have become increasingly less popular than divorce in recent years. Statistics published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2002 revealed that 20% of marriages were likely to end within the first five years. That same data showed that 33% of marriages were likely to be dissolved within the first 10 years. Those statistics also show that only 18% of private-sector employees have pensions. At least 35% of them did back in the 1990s.

Are you headed for a divorce?

Everybody told you that the "honeymoon phase" of your marriage would eventually give way to daily routines and ordinary life -- and you were fine with that. You weren't expecting, however, for your relationship with your spouse to fizzle away entirely.

Yet, here you are. You're starting to wonder if your marriage is going to last (or whether you even want it to do so).

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