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Rockford, Illinois Family Law Blog

Special concerns when divorcing an addict

Loving an addict is hard. Sometimes, you have to step back and realize that you need to preserve yourself and protect your children from the constant drama, the potential for legal action and more.

But divorcing an addict comes with another worry: How do you continue to protect the kids if you aren't with them at all times? You may decide that it's in the best interests of your children to ask the court for sole custody.

Divorce tends to rise at the start of a new year

For Illinois residents who are confronted by the emotional upheaval of a potential divorce, it might seem counterintuitive for there to be certain times of the year when more people decide to move forward with the end of a marriage. However, it is statistically true that divorce happens more frequently at the start of a new year. There are many theories as to why this is the case. Regardless of why a person decides that their family dispute has reached a point of no return and they want to divorce, having legal assistance could be one of the most important factors in achieving a satisfactory resolution.

January has become known as "Divorce Month" in legal circles. According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, divorces increase by one-third in January when compared to the average number of filings. This perception is bolstered by the numbers and anecdotal evidence. Google searches indicate that, in 2019, January 6 to 12 saw a peak in people who wanted information on divorce. There are three basic reasons why divorce is so common in the first month of the new year. These include making a fresh start, thinking about children and financial considerations.

How a request for spousal support is handled during divorce

Alimony can be one of the most important topics a divorcing couple must address during their divorce. As a result, it pays to know as much as possible about what alimony is and how it is awarded during the divorce process.

Alimony may also be referred to as "spousal support" or "spousal maintenance," but generally refers to a payment made by one of the former spouses to the other former spouse following the divorce. Because of the nature of spousal support, and what it is designed to do, it can sometimes lead to acrimony and disputes during the divorce process. Spousal support is generally designed to help a lower-earning or non-earning spouse with the adjustments needed to transition to financial self-sufficiency following divorce.

How to address inevitable divorce-related emotions

Everyone knows that divorce can be a tough time for couples and families. As a result, it is helpful to understand how to cope with divorce-related emotions. Some tips about how to do that can help those going through the divorce process.

Understanding how to deal with the natural emotions that are part of the divorce process, and knowing what to expect from the divorce process, can help guide divorcing couples through their divorce process, which is traditionally viewed as a difficult time. To begin with, divorcing spouses should expect that they will experience a variety of emotions during their divorce. This can also include anxiety about the future. It is important for divorcing spouses to not be too hard on themselves during their divorce and to take care of themselves emotionally and physically throughout the process.

Women facing divorce want to avoid financial surprises

A 2018 study of women in various stages of divorce revealed that a large number of participants experienced trying financial issues they did not expect.

Women of different ages participated in the study, which found that younger women faced more “nasty” financial surprises than those in the over-55 age group.

The difference between marital and separate property

Couples may not always think of property in terms of marital property and separate property. However, the distinction becomes especially important when a couple decides to divorce. The significance is a big one because generally only marital property is subject to the division process during divorce. Therefore, divorcing couples should know the difference between marital property and separate property so that they can develop a legal strategy that furthers their interests.

During the property division process, marital property is divided amongst the divorcing couple. Depending on which state the couple lives in, their marital property will either be divided equitably, or fairly, or split evenly in half. Again, only marital property is divided during the process. Marital property refers to earnings, property and assets the couple acquires during their marriage and also includes joint debts of the couple. Separate property is a different category of property that is generally not divided during the divorce process.

Child custody basics in Illinois

A parent's relationship with his or her child is on the line when child custody disputes arise. This is why parents who are facing child custody concerns should understand what a parenting plan consists of and how it can be negotiated to their and their children's benefit. There are a lot of factors that must be taken into consideration in these matters, though, so individuals need to ensure they have a strong understanding of the legalities of child custody in Illinois.

Child custody refers to physical and legal custody of the child. Joint custody can also be agreed to or awarded, in which the parents share physical and legal custody of the child. One parent can also have sole physical and/or legal custody of the child. There are many child custody options in Illinois based on the best interests of the child. If one parent has sole custody of the child, the other parent will likely have visitation rights.

What are grandparents' rights?

Grandparents' rights can be a delicate family law issue for some families. As a result, families should ensure that they understand what grandparents' rights refer to and when they may be available.

Grandparents may have certain child custody and visitation rights depending on the situation and the state where their grandchildren reside. Sometimes grandparents' visitation rights are referred to as nonparent visitation rights or third-party visitation rights. They are based on the notion that children will do better in life if they have family members, including grandparents, around to support them.

How to handle dividing a business during a divorce

Property division is a major part of the divorce process and can be challenging for many couples. The family law system provides a process for divorcing couples to value property and work out a property division settlement agreement that both spouses can live with.

In some situations, the divorcing couple may own a business together, which may require complex business valuation methods and unexpected complexities. During a divorce, it is often necessary to ensure that the property being divided is properly valued; this property can include real estate or stock options. When a business is part of the property division process during a divorce, the divorcing couple should ensure that their business is properly valued.

Divorced couples find that co-parenting is an acquired skill

Once the divorce is finally over, most people begin carefully navigating their way into an uncertain future with new and different responsibilities and objectives.

The same thing happens when the family unit breaks apart and a new era of child-raising begins. Divorced couples soon find that co-parenting is an acquired skill.

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