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Belleville Family Law Blog

Do you understand the primary goals of divorce mediation?

It's difficult enough to go through the divorce process. If you do so without really knowing your legal rights and what to expect, it's easy to make a mistake that costs you both time and money.

Even though many people find divorce mediation preferential to litigation, you still need to understand the goals associated with this approach. These typically include the following:

  • To create an equitable and mutually acceptable agreement
  • To eliminate the high costs of litigation
  • To reduce the amount of time it takes to finalize a divorce agreement
  • To minimize hostility toward one another, which is very important if you will be co-parenting

Spousal maintenance: How does the court calculate it?

When going through the divorce process, you may have some questions about spousal maintenance. While there is no guarantee this will come into play, there's a chance that it could be a sticking point as the process moves forward.

Unlike child support, family law judges have quite a bit of discretion when making final decisions on spousal maintenance. Although every situation is different, here are some of the factors that often come into play:

  • The standard of living during the marriage
  • The length of the marriage (the longer the marriage the greater chance there is of one person paying spousal maintenance)
  • The health of each individual
  • The age of each individual
  • The earning power and current income of each individual

Do you know the steps to financially prepare for divorce?

With so many details associated with a divorce, it's only natural to feel overwhelmed. You may even feel like you've lost control and have no idea of what you should and shouldn't be doing. This is never a good feeling, but it's 100 percent natural.

There are many steps you can take to financially prepare for divorce, which is something you need to think about upfront. Consider the following:

  • Gather all your financial records, including but not limited to bank statements, retirement account statements, investment accounts and real estate information
  • Make a list of all your assets and debts, such as through the use of a property division checklist
  • Monitor your credit report to learn more about where things stand right now in regards to your credit
  • Open your own accounts, as you no longer want to use those that were once shared with your spouse
  • Understand your expenses, including the ones that you need to eliminate as quickly as possible (as to ease your financial stress)
  • Get the help you need, such as by consulting with a tax professional or financial analyst

Basic tips for protecting your finances in divorce

When you think about divorce, you may immediately turn your attention to the wellbeing of your children or the fact that you'll be living the single life once again.

While there's a lot to consider, you need to remember one thing: You must do whatever it takes to protect your finances.

What does a property division checklist look like?

It can be a challenge to ask your spouse for a divorce. Unfortunately, this is just the beginning of the process.

Once you are both on the same page, you then need to turn your attention to a variety of family law issues, such as those associated with property division, child custody, child support and alimony.

The way you ask for divorce is as important as the process

If you come to the conclusion that divorce is the best way to improve your life, you need to move forward with the process in a timely manner.

However, here's something you first need to think about: the manner in which you will ask your spouse for a divorce. This is every bit as important as the process itself.

A parenting agreement can save you from a lot of grief

If you're moving through the divorce process, you know that you'll face a variety of challenges as the days go by. This is even more so the case if you have at least one child with the other person.

While it's not the ideal situation, there are things you can do during and after your divorce to ensure that your child continues to lead a good life. For instance, you'll want to work with the other parent in an attempt to negotiate a parenting agreement.

Illinois child support laws are catching up with society

Social expectations and customs sometimes are a lot faster than the laws surrounding them.

When the law does finally catch up, there are usually some clear winners and losers as situations get reversed and changes are abruptly made. That's the reality right now for Illinois parents who are separated, divorced or never actually married.

Will you consider creating a prenuptial agreement?

As your wedding day closes in, it's only natural to think about the future. This could lead you to consider the benefits of creating a prenuptial agreement. While this may be something you are thinking about, you never know if your soon to be spouse is on the same page.

At some point, sooner rather than later, you need to discuss the benefits of a prenuptial agreement with your partner. Even if you don't act on this legal document, you should at least learn more about what it can do for you.

What are the reasons to consider divorce mediation?

If you come to find that you have no choice but to move forward with divorce, you'll want to learn more about how the process will unwind.

There are people out there who think that divorce is nothing more than fighting with their ex-spouse in court. This doesn't have to be the way things work out, as mediation is an option.

When you are ready to discuss your legal issue with an experienced Illinois lawyer, we will be here for you.

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