${site.data.firmName}${SEMFirmNameAlt} Illinois Family Law And Litigation Attorney & Counselor At Law
Legal Representation With Personal Advocacy

Vernon Hills Illinois Family Law Blog

Quantifying the value of a caregiver

For the most part, both men and women in Illinois agree that parents who act as caregivers to their children play an important role in a marriage. However, men and women tend to disagree over how much a stay-at-home parent should receive in a divorce settlement. A study involving roughly 3,000 people asked participants to read a scenario about a couple who divorced after having three children. Both the husband and wife worked until the couple's first child was born.

At that point, the husband continued to work while the wife stayed home to care for the children. The husband filed for divorce after 17 years of marriage. Participants were given six different scenarios in which the husband and wife had various occupations and levels of education. For the most part, female participants gave the wife the same share of marital property regardless of her education level.

Tasks to complete after a divorce

Filing the last of the divorce paperwork can be a big relief for couples in Illinois who are splitting up, but there is usually still more work to be done after the divorce. For example, a spouse may need to be removed from a health insurance policy, and one spouse may need to find another source for medical insurance.

Vehicles and other assets may need to be retitled. It might be necessary to refinance a mortgage if one spouse gets the home. Joint accounts, including bank and credit card accounts, may need to be closed and individual accounts opened in their place. Some people may want to make a name change. If there is a non-IRA retirement account that the couple is dividing in the divorce, a document called a qualified domestic relations order may need to be approved by the plan's custodian. Assets from retirement accounts that are split during divorce may need to be rolled into a new IRA.

Three ways a divorce damages your health

We are always told to prioritize our health. Whether it’s our mental health or our physical body, we need to take care of ourselves first. However, our priorities tend to skew when we are going through challenging circumstances, such as divorce.

It’s critical to take a step back and recognize how a divorce could damage your health and makes you feel worse during a difficult period. Once you know what to look out for, you can treat it before it becomes a problem.

How to coparent after a divorce

Most parents in Illinois who are getting a divorce must learn to co-parent. By following some guidelines, parents can make the process of co-parenting run more smoothly.

First, parents should make the best interests of the childparamount. This includes understanding that except in cases where the child might be unsafe, such as abuse, the child should have access to both parents. Parents should avoid speaking negatively about one another, blaming the other parent for the divorce or putting the child in the middle by having the child carry even the simplest messages back and forth. While it is not uncommon for divorced parents to disagree on specific parenting rules, they should try to be consistent in terms of general household expectations.

How to handle cryptocurrency assets in a divorce

Some people in Illinois who are getting a divorce may suspect a spouse of hiding cryptocurrency assets. This can be particularly easy to do if the cryptocurrency is purchased directly and then moved offline. However, penalties for hiding assets in a divorce could include getting fewer marital assets and going to jail for contempt of court.

Even when a person purchases cryptocurrency through an online exchange, which is less difficult to trace, the process of finding it can be costly in time and money. Many experts lack experience in cryptocurrency although one certified financial forensics accountant reported finding $100,000 in cryptocurrency assets that a man did not report by examining bank statements.

Social media: The new normal in divorced parent-child relationships

Many parents worry about "screen time." But the same technological advancements that give moms and dads pause may also be helping divorced families to bond more effectively.

A recent study published by the Journal of Family Issues looked at data culled from almost 400 divorced men and women and their relationship with children between 10 and 18 years old. Researchers concluded that ongoing communication ranked as a primary factor in fostering close relationships.

Changes to spousal maintenance in Illinois

Legal changes over the past years have affected the way spousal support or maintenance is calculated in Illinois. Maintenance, once known as alimony, is a post-divorce payment from one spouse to the other to help provide a financial equalizer, especially when there is a significant earning disparity between the parties. Before 2015, maintenance payments were awarded at the discretion of the court, taking into account a range of factors such as each party's income and property, their respective earning capacities and the length of the marriage.

While the basis for this model was sound, it often resulted in widely disparate decisions from one case to another. Therefore, the Illinois legislature revised the laws relating to spousal maintenance for couples earning $250,000 each year or less by determining a formula for spousal maintenance that applies to these couples. In 2018, that was expanded to encompass couples earning $500,000 or less each year.

Illinois ranks in the lowest divorce rates in the U.S.

As March rapidly approaches, lawyers see a decrease in divorce cases due to the end of “divorce season” – a period between January and early February where the divorce rate spikes across the country.

Despite the end of divorce season, some lawyers may have more business than others according to a recent study. Researchers at the University of Washington observed current patterns for divorce in the United States and found which states have the highest and lowest divorce rates.

Major reasons why people choose divorce

There are a number of reasons why people in Illinois may decide to end their marriage, but some are more common than others. One study examined people who had participated in a premarital communication program but later divorced; they were asked about the reasons for their divorce 14 years after their original involvement with the program. The study aimed to understand what kinds of issues contributed most to their decision to separate.

The vaguest answer was also the most common, as 75 percent of respondents cited a lack of commitment as a reason for their divorce. There were many reasons that contributed to that feeling, including a loss of romantic or sexual attraction. Some couples grew apart over the years, while others may have married more due to social pressure than true desire. Another 59 percent of respondents said that infidelity was a major factor in their decision to divorce. Even when people already had a poor marriage, physical cheating was often the last step toward separation. In some cases, the affair itself was the primary issue while in other cases it reflected a broken relationship.

Illinois law changes how child support is calculated

The average child support payment in the United States is $430 a month. This means that a parent could pay up to $92,880 to support a child to adulthood. However, a new Illinois law introduces new variables that could determine how much a noncustodial parent actually pays. These variables include the custodial parent's income and how much time a child spends with the noncustodial parent.

For some parents, this could mean saving hundreds of dollars a month compared to their current payments. Under the old system, support payments were based on a percentage of a noncustodial parent's income. Those percentages ranged from 20 percent for one child to 50 percent for those who had six or more children to support. The money that a parent saves now may be used to help pay a child's college or other future expenses.

Email Us For A Response

Gauthier Family Law

Gauthier Family Law
945 Lakeview Parkway, Suite 170
Vernon Hills, IL 60061

Phone: 847-816-7781
Fax: 847-557-4090
Vernon Hills Law Office Map