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Geneva family law attorney, happy marriage, healthy marriage, marriage, marriage counseling, marriage education classes, premarital counselingCome this November, voters in Colorado could be voting on a ballot initiative that would require mandatory pre-marriage education classes for couples wanting to get married. Those getting married for the first time would be required to complete 10 hours of marriage education classes. For people who are planning their second marriage, 20 hours of marriage education is required. And for those making their third trip to the altar, 30 hours of class time would be required.

The pull to initiate premarital counseling was started by Kids Against Divorce, with Colorado being the first targeted. However, the group has plans to present similar bills throughout several states. And although there are currently no states that require pre-marriage education, some couples do choose to attend premarital counseling sessions before they wed.

Therapists tout the benefits of premarital counseling as a way for couples to learn how to build better and stronger relationships before  marrying, and to help avoid the issues that frequently bring about divorce. But there can be pros and cons to going through the process. The Huffington Post recently interviewed therapists, as well as family law professionals, to help identify the pluses and minuses of premarital counseling.

divorce rate, baby boomer, marriage, divorce, generation, millennials , Geneva divorce lawyerA new study by the Minnesota Population Center reveals that for the past 30 years, marriage experts have been reading the wrong data when it comes to determining the increases and decreases of this country’s divorce rate. And this new information shows that the divorce rate is even higher than previously thought – especially among baby boomers.

Divorce numbers began rising in the 1970’s as many baby boomers got married and divorced. They’ve kept up that pattern over the past three decades. According to the lead researchers, Steve Ruggles and Sheela Kennedy, the increase has spiked dramatically. In an interview, Ruggles said, “There has been a threefold increase in the divorce rate of people aged between 60 and 65 since 1990. And for those older than 65, the increase is fivefold.”

Ruggles points out that second and third marriages are often more “unstable” than first marriages and cites this as one of the reasons for the increase in numbers.

Posted on in Mediation

divorce mediation, alternative dispute resolution, divorce, Illinois divorce lawyer, divorce attorneyMany times during a divorce process, rather than enduring litigation, couples will turn to mediation in order to help resolve conflicts and work out a mutually beneficial divorce settlement. It is often said that the method by which conflicts are processed and resolved will end up having a large influence on a family’s adjustment to the divorce. In divorce mediation, spouses meet with a neutral third party (the mediator) and work through any issues that need to be resolved in order to end the marriage as amicably and cost effectively as possible.

What  does a mediator do that the two of you cannot accomplish alone?

A mediator’s role is to help you and your spouse clearly define any issues you may have, keep all lines of communication open, and to promote discussion and resolution. This does not mean that the mediator will make all of your decisions or you, but rather, he or she will assist in bringing the issues to the table and making it possible to effectively deal with them.

happy wife, happy life, marriage, divorce, lawyer, attorney, Illinois, family lawyerA new research study released by the University of Chicago appears to have upset the proverbial marital apple cart as compiled data indicates that the husband is the key player in maintaining a happy marriage and avoiding divorce court.

The recent study, published to the Journal of Marriage and Family supports that husbands maintaining a positive outlook reported lower levels of conflict in the marriage while the wife's outlook on life had very little impact on the union. Wives reported increased conflict issues when their husband or partner is in poor health but data suggests that when the wife is experiencing health issues there is little to no change in the quality of the marriage.

Lead author, James Iveniuk, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Sociology cited these results after interviewing over 900 married couples with at least 40 years of wedded bliss. The data was comparative to gender characteristics to detect a change in how we view marital partnerships. The findings also concluded that when couples are critical of each other, the apple cart may topple, leading to discontent or even divorce.

Illinois same sex marriage, marriage laws, your rights, Illinois, family lawIn November 2013, the Illinois House of Representatives approved same-sex marriage legislation by a narrow vote of 61 to 54 with the Illinois Senate following suit with a vote of 32 to 51. As Governor Pat Quinn placed pen to paper, Illinois became the 16th state to recognize same sex marriage effective June 1, 2014.

For the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community, this has been a welcomed victory, but one Illinois business owner will not join in the celebration.

According to a recent article by the Huffington Post, Jim Walder, owner of the TimberCreek Bed and Breakfast located near Paxton, Illinois strongly stated he will not be advertising  destination wedding packages to the members of the LGBT community.

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