Law Office of Bradley R. Tengler, P.C.

Rockford, Illinois Family Law Blog

What if you need to negotiate a temporary change in custody?

When you crafted your custody and visitation agreement with your ex-spouse, you knew exactly what would work for each of you. For the most part, things have gone along just fine.

Until they didn't. A personal crisis has thrown your normal routine into disarray and you desperately need to revise the existing custody plan.

Are divorces in a far-flung city a sign of things to come?

There's no denying that the COVID-19 virus has drastically transformed the way that people live their lives in many areas of the world. In particularly hard-hit places, residents have been obliged to ride out the rising tide of infections inside their homes for many weeks.

While areas in the United States are just approaching that extreme, people in the Chinese city of Ix'an are already emerging from their quarantines -- and a significant number of them are heading straight for divorce court. City officials report that they've had a massive increase in the number of divorce requests now that people are able to leave their homes.

Modifying a parenting schedule

If you share custody of your children with a former spouse, you are likely familiar with two important concepts: decision-making and parenting time. The decision-making part of co-parenting includes having a say in education, medical treatments, religious practices, extracurricular activities and other important matters. The parenting time component covers when you see your kids. 

If you and your ex-spouse reached an agreement about decision-making and parenting time, you likely have a comprehensive parenting plan. Alternatively, if a judge settled a custody dispute, you probably have an allocation judgment. Either way, the document outlines how much time you spend with your children. For a variety of reasons, though, you may need to rework parenting time. 

Why is the divorce rate in Illinois so low?

The newest statistics indicate that Illinois has some of the lowest divorce rates in the nation. Data from the United States Census Bureau indicates that only 6.6% of marriages in Illinois end in divorce. Divorce rates in the nation are generally going down, but the national average population of divorced people is about 16%, by comparison.

So, does Illinois have some kind of special power that is keeping couples together? Not really. Here are some of the reasons that divorce is on the decline in Illinois and elsewhere:

  1. Fewer people are getting married. Fewer than 65% of the population in the state above 15 years of age are actually married in the first place. A dearth of marriages means fewer divorces.
  2. People are getting married later -- and having children later. Just 20 years ago, men and women were typically in their mid-twenties when they married. Today, they're more likely to be close to 30. That often translates to more mature and financially secure marriages that lack significant stress points.
  3. Delaying marriage also means that people have more time to develop their own personalities and strengths before they pair up. That may be making it easier for people to pair off with partners that are more compatible in the long-term.

Why would you sign a postnuptial agreement?

You got married to your spouse without a prenuptial agreement in place. Why in the world would you want to sign a postnuptial agreement now?

As it turns out, there could be many good reasons for you and your spouse to sign a postnup. Let's examine a few of them.

What do you tell the kids when you're getting divorced?

You made the decision to divorce. You told your spouse. Now comes the next big hurdle: telling the kids.

Kids naturally have a lot of questions about what's going to happen when their parents are splitting up. They may be scared, angry or confused by turns, and they're going to be looking to you and your spouse for answers. It's smart to sit down with your spouse before you tell the kids and agree on your approach to the situation. Once you have, consider the following suggestions:

What happens to airline miles during a divorce?

Nowadays, virtually every airline, hotel chain and car rental service has a loyalty program. If you enroll in the right programs, you may save a considerable amount on travel costs. Of course, if your rewards points are marital assets, you must think about what happens to them during your divorce. 

In Illinois, divorcing spouses typically divide marital wealth equitably. This approach means that you can likely keep separate property while receiving a fair share of what you and your spouse jointly own. Consequently, if you acquired your airline miles during your marriage, you may have to divide them equitably. 

Can you make custody transitions less stressful?

For some people, getting a divorce wasn't the hard part. The real trouble comes every time they have to transition their child to the other parent's house for visitation.

Well, the good news is that you can make it easier -- on you, on your ex-spouse and (most importantly) on your child. Here are some things to try:

How to approach your life after a divorce

Making the decision to seek a divorce was hard -- but figuring out how to reinvent yourself as a newly single person may be harder. The fear of having to "start over" can be one of the major reasons people delay divorce as long as they do.

Rest easy. There are plenty of people who have gone down this road before, and you can learn from what they've discovered. Here's how to approach life after your separation and divorce:

  • Go ahead and grieve. No rule book says you have to celebrate your divorce. Even if you were the one who sought the divorce, the end of your marriage is also the end of a life that you once happily embraced and looked forward to having.
  • Put off dating until you've handled your feelings. Rushing headlong into the dating scene can be a disaster if you haven't processed all of the emotional baggage from your failed relationship. You may end up making the same mistakes (or a bunch of new ones) when you choose your next partner.
  • Find your past self. While you were married, you may have abandoned hobbies you loved or the habits you enjoyed. Do you like who you are now? If not, it may be time to start painting, writing, dancing or reading again. Spend some time focusing solely on the things that you enjoy until you're very clear on what makes you happy. Knowing who you are makes it easier to find the right circle of friends and a potential new mate that fits with your goals and lifestyle.
  • Go ahead and try something new. Something as simple as a new haircut or color, a delicate tattoo or a change in your wardrobe can help you mark the transition between "married you" and "single you" and make you feel like a new person.

Does my spouse have a right to my pension when we divorce?

Even though the overall rate of divorce decreased over the years, divorce among people over 50 increased significantly. Bloomberg, the U.S. News & World Report and many other sources report that elder divorce can significantly impact your finances - especially your retirement savings.

However, no matter your age, your retirement is important. You save up for your retirement throughout your entire career, which makes it a significant asset for your future. In fact, it is one of the most valuable assets we own, but individuals often overlook it when it comes to a divorce.

You might wonder: does your spouse have a right to your retirement when you divide property?

Top 3 Divorce Lawyers in Rockford

Have a legal question?
Need help from an attorney?

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Law Office of Bradley R. Tengler, P.C. 728 North Court Street, Suite B Rockford, IL 61103 Rockford Law Office Map