Serving Waukegan, Libertyville, Lake County, Gurnee & nearby areas of Illinois
It goes without saying that the end of a marriage is an emotionally charged period of your life. In addition to any emotional pain you may be experiencing, divorce also has implications for your future and your children's future, financially and otherwise. Before divorce is granted, the following must be settled:
- Division of property
- Division of debt
- Alimony payments, if applicable
- Child custody and visitation
- Child support
As experienced divorce attorneys, we will:
Paternity disputes tend to fall into one of two general categories. In the first, the father is trying to establish paternity so that he might be granted certain child custody rights. These rights can vary from a full shared custody agreement with the mother to simple visitation rights with the child.
In a marriage, you acquire property and other assets (real estate, money, investments) as a couple. You may also have assets from before your marriage. When a marriage is dissolved, these things must be divided up. Generally, anything acquired during the marriage is considered "marital property," while pre-marriage items are not considered marital property.
In Illinois, what used to be called child custody is now called parenting responsibilities. Custody issues may be resolved one of two ways:
Family court can be very stressful. Among the many issues you will have to deal with is payment of attorney's fees. Prospective clients frequently ask us how much they can expect to spend. The answer is rarely simple.
Mediation is a way for you and your ex-spouse to work out the terms of the divorce with minimal or no decisions made by a judge. It puts the decision-making and terms in the hands of you and your former partner. Many issues can be resolved through mediation, including:
One party to the marriage begins the legal process for the dissolution of marriage by filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. The person filing the case is referred to as the "Petitioner." The other spouse is referred to as the "Respondent."
Once the petition is filed with the Clerk of the Circuit Court of the appropriate County, the Petition and a Summons will be served upon the respondent by a sheriff or a private process server.
2. The Response
Among the many issues one must deal with in getting divorced, one of the most emotional issues is often which spouse will get the family cat or dog. The simple answer is that the law treats pets as personal property and not as humans. If the pet was acquired before the marriage, the spouse who acquired it will be awarded the animal in the divorce.
Illinois legislation scheduled to take effect January 1, 2019 will make it easier for grandparents to obtain court ordered visitation of grandchildren of unmarried parents who do not reside together. In the past, a grandparent needed to first establish parentage of the child before seeking visitation. Under the new law, a grandparent need only establish that the parent to whom they are related is a parent of the child sought to be visited.