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Vernon Hills Family Law Blog

New Illinois Child Support Income Shares Charts Are Released

Beginning July 1, 2017 Illinois will use the income shares model for determining child support. This change is a dramatic shift from the simple former model which used a percentage of the payors net income to determine guideline child support and was largely blind to the recipient's income. The problems with the former model are well-told, however I believe the largest problem was that it failed to properly account for the recipient's income and the contributions both parties made to the child or children prior to breakdown of the marriage. The income shares model does just that. While it still fails to take into account the wildly different costs of living in various cities throughout Illinois, as well as the wildly different spending habits of families, the income shares model attempts to treat the payor of support more fairly while at the same time at least attempting to continue to provide the same support for the child or children that existed prior to the breakdown of the marriage. To do this, a simple percentage share of net income is inadequate. Instead, now the Courts will look at the combined income of both parents, determine the total contribution to be made to the child from both parents based upon that combined amount, and set the payor's support payment based upon a percentage determined by their income compared to the recipient's income. It sounds far more complex than it really is, but it is still without question more laborious than the former model. To compute support using the income shares model, the State of Illinois is releasing charts which set the combined support amount based upon the number of children (1-6) and net income, as well as a conversion chart which translates net income from gross. The charts were made available late last week and are still marked as drafts, however as July 1st quickly approaches it is likely that these charts either become the final model or closely resemble the final model. Click below to view these charts directly from the Illinois.gov website.

New Illinois Divorce Laws - Removal and Relocation

Illinois divorce laws have changed, now allowing parents to move with their minor child across state lines without the Court's permission, with one catch: the move must not be more than 25 miles away from the minor child's current residence, depending on the County in which you live. Beginning on January 1, 2016 the Courts have adopted new guidelines as to relocation (formally known as "removal") of a minor child from their current residence.

New Illinois Divorce Laws - Custody and Visitation

As of January 1, 2016 Illinois has adopted new language in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act as it relates to child custody and visitation in divorce cases. These two words that we have all grown to know and love must now be removed from our vocabulary. Beginning January 1, 2016 the term "custody" is now known as "allocation of parental responsibilities". The term "visitation" has a slightly less wordy change to "parenting time". You may read the full statute here. The pertinent part is as follows:

The Dirty Little Secret of Divorce Law

I spend a great deal of my time consulting with prospective divorce clients. Just as they are interviewing me to determine if they believe I am the right divorce lawyer for them to hire, I'm also interviewing them to determine whether they are the right type of client for my firm.

New Divorce and Malpractice Office in Lakeview

We are excited to announce we have opened a new office in Chicago to better serve our Cook County divorce, family law and legal malpractice clients at 4003 N. Broadway Ave. #6. Located on the north side of Chicago in the Lakeview neighborhood at the corner of Irving Park Road and Broadway, our new office is conveniently located near a variety of public transportation options including the Sheridan Red Line. Directions to our new office can be found here. You may reach us by telephone at 312-600-4385.

New Illinois Maintenance (Alimony) Laws

On the first of this year, Illinois adopted new laws regarding maintenance (formerly known as alimony) in divorce cases. The changes are dramatic and have already been causing a massive shift in the way divorce cases are tried and settled throughout the state. These changes only apply to marriages in which the combined annual gross income of both parties is less than $250,000. The full text of the new maintenance (alimony) law can be read here, however the pertinent changes for purposes of this article are as follows: 

Michael Gauthier Named One of the Nation's Top 1% of Attorneys

Attorney Michael Gauthier was named one of the Nation's Top 1% of Attorneys by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel. The NADC employs a 4 stage selection process to determine the best lawyers in the country. According to the National Association of Distinguished Counsel, this process includes: 

What Is It Like To Divorce As Twenty-Something Mom

A recent article from the Huffington Post was authored by a women who was 28 years old when her husband told her he wanted a divorce. As she says, at that time she had "a wonderful three-year-old daughter, two fantastic careers, friends, two dogs, a cat, even the proverbial wooden picket fence."  Divorce is difficult for most people of any age, but young couples divorcing have unique issues that older couples do not. The full article can be found here

How To Find The Best Divorce Lawyer For You

How do you find the best divorce lawyer for you? Notice I didn't ask how do you find the best divorce lawyer. Just like no two people are exactly alike, no two divorce cases or divorce clients are exactly alike. Finding the right divorce lawyer for you is much like choosing which car to buy or which home to purchase -one size does not fit all. The relationship between an attorney and a client is both a business relationship as well as a personal one. Most divorce attorneys can competently handle most typical divorce cases, but be sure to understand their fee structure and their experience in handling cases similar to yours. Determine whether the lawyer is a divorce attorney or an attorney who occasionally handles divorce cases. There is a huge difference between the two. Familiarity with divorce law and divorce judges can make a world of difference. Make sure you share a common approach to handling your case. This is where a breakdown in the relationship can often occur. A client may wish to take an aggressive approach, but the attorney may be predisposed to having a softer touch or wish to attempt a collaborative method to dealing with the case. Make sure during your initial consultation that you both share a common game plan for the strategy of the case. 

Typical Questions About Family Law and Divorce Court

For many of my Divorce and Family Law clients, their first hands on experience with the court system is inside a divorce courtroom. A great deal of my clients ask me the same questions about court, which makes me figure even more of my clients are thinking the questions but are too afraid to ask. Below is a selection of typical questions my clients ask me. These questions include:

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Gauthier Family Law

945 Lakeview Parkway, Suite 170
Vernon Hills, IL 60061

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