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Geneva family law attorneysEach year, hundreds of thousands of Americans get divorced. While the divorce rate is lower than it was a few decades ago, divorce is still common throughout the country. Despite, people seem hesitant to give up on finding love and marital bliss, even if their first marriage fails. In fact, a recent study found that a full 40 percent of marriages today include at least one person who has been married before. In about half of those marriages, both spouses are on their second, third, or subsequent marriage. It is estimated that about 60 percent of divorced or widowed Americans will eventually remarry.

Such numbers certainly seem to portray a level of optimism regarding how we approach marriage as a society. If you are considering getting married again after a divorce, however, there are some things you need to keep in mind, including:

  • Termination of spousal support: If you currently receive maintenance payments—also called alimony or spousal support—from your ex under the terms of your divorce settlement, getting remarried will almost certainly put an end to those payments. Under Illinois law, you moving in with your fiancé could be enough to terminate your ex’s maintenance obligation;
  • Parental responsibilities and parenting time: Your remarriage does not guarantee a change in your responsibilities regarding your children. However, parenting time schedules and other concerns related to child custody are based on the circumstances of each family. A remarriage could definitely change your circumstances, so modifications to your parenting plan could be necessary;
  • Child support payments: In most cases, getting remarried will not affect your child support obligations or your eligibility to continue receiving child support. The child’s parents are still responsible for supporting the child, regardless of the existence of new spouses. If, however, you decide to change jobs or stop working due to your new marriage, or if you have a child with your new spouse, those factors could affect child support; and
  • Inheritance rights: Do you have family heirlooms or important possessions that you want your children to receive when you die? If you do not formalize your wishes in a prenuptial agreement, it could be your new spouse who receives the property intended for your children.

As the old adage says, there are exceptions to almost every rule, so the considerations mentioned above should serve as a reminder of things to be aware of rather than advice for your unique situation.

Kane County divorce attorneysDissipation of assets refers to instances when a spouse who is either in the process of getting divorced or will soon divorce, purposely wastes marital assets. If you are getting divorced and your soon-to-be-ex-spouse has wasted marital assets through reckless spending, gambling, drug use, or through other means, you should know that there is a legal process for recovering these funds. Read on to learn the specific criteria which must be met in order to claim dissipation, as well as learn how you can reclaim the money that was wasted.

Dissipation in Illinois Defined

Not just any type of spending is considered dissipation. The spending must happen during a specific time and meet other criteria in order to be considered dissipative. The Illinois Supreme Court provides the legal definition of dissipation. In Illinois, dissipation is the “use of marital property for the sole benefit of one of the spouses for a purpose unrelated to the marriage at a time that the marriage is undergoing an irreconcilable breakdown.”

Posted on in Family Law

Geneva family law attorneyArranged marriage is an unfamiliar concept to most residents of the United States. However, it does happen in this country, and it is important to understand that certain cultural factors may play a role in arranged marriages. This is especially true when it comes to attitudes about divorce. It takes a uniquely sensitive and experienced professional to be able to handle both the legal and the cultural hurdles of this unusual situation.

Arranged Marriage Facts and Statistics

The proponents of arranged marriage point to a low divorce rate—about 6 percent worldwide, according to UNICEF data—as one of the advantages of the institution. Compare this to the most recent data available on divorce in the United States which is generally reported as between 35 and 45 percent. However, these figures may not be completely reliable, primarily because arranged marriage most often occurs in cultures that have an inherent taboo against divorce, if they recognize it at all.

Posted on in Divorce

Kane County divorce attorneysThere are occasions in which a divorce must proceed happen in a way very different from the norm. One of the most common is for a spouse to be missing or deliberately absent, so as to frustrate personal jurisdiction over them. This does not mean that you are stuck in a marriage you wish to dissolve; it just means that divorce must be sought in a different way.

The First Steps: Due Diligence

In a divorce, you must be able to serve your spouse with papers, as he or she has the right to appear on his or her own behalf or contest the action. However, if you cannot locate your spouse, an alternate method has to be found, and you must obtain permission to use it. The first step toward obtaining that permission is to put forth a “good faith effort” toward locating your spouse. You must be able to show the judge that you have exhausted all reasonable options to find your spouse before you will be permitted to pursue alternate service. For example, many judges require you to look in places like indexes from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), Social Security’s database of deaths, or even on social media to try to find a trace of your soon-to-be ex.

Posted on in Divorce

Geneva divorce attorneySometimes, life attacks from multiple sides. Sadly, it is not uncommon for those going through a divorce to end up in bankruptcy at the same time, with seismic changes to one’s finances as a result of debt restructuring. However, depending on your unique situation, it can be difficult to determine which proceeding should happen first and how to handle both.

Divorce First

Depending on the situation, getting a divorce before filing for bankruptcy can be the best path for many couples. There are two different types of bankruptcy filings, each named for the chapter of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code used for the filing. Chapter 7 is for individuals or couples with very few assets, while Chapter 13, also called a reorganization bankruptcy, is for those with steady income and debt that it is possible to restructure.

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