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October 2014 Archives

Have a family-law issue: Get help


Just as each Illinoisan is unique, so too are the family-law issues he or she encounters. Some Illinoisans get married, start a civil union or begin a domestic partnership. Others get divorced or dissolve their relationship. Some Illinoisans need an order of protection. Others need to create, modify or enforce a child-custody agreement. Some need to calculate child support; others need to enforce it.

Attacking a prenuptial agreement


When high-profile Illinoisans divorce a common topic is the strength of the couple's prenuptial agreement. When done properly, these agreements, along with postnuptial agreements, can be essential for almost everyone, from business owners to stay-at-home moms to those who want to make sure they get the pet in case of a divorce.

Tips for Selecting an Attorney

When you are in the process of selecting an attorney to represent you in a legal matter, consider preparing some questions before your consultation. To determine if the lawyer is a good fit for you, you will first want to find out about his or her experience. Some of the questions should include:

Unique Same Sex Marriage Laws in Illinois

Same sex marriage was legalized in Illinois and became effective June 1, 2014. The statute not only promises full marriage equality under the law, it continues to leave in place the Civil Union Act which allows same sex unions as well as male/female unions.  That is not unusual with the trend toward legalizing gay marriage in our country.  What is unusual, especially for Illinois, which is never on the cutting edge of much of anything, is that Illinois has decided to retain jurisdiction over civil unions and gay marriages even when the parties live outside the State of Illinois, if they are in a state that does not recognize their union. Allowing access to an Illinois Court for dissolution of a civil union or same sex marriage is very unusual.  Normally, the statute requires that you reside in Illinois for at least 90 days prior to the judgment being entered.  However, since many of our sister states, including Wisconsin and Indiana do not recognize same sex unions either under a civil union act or a gay marriage act, people who wish to dissolve their union have no recourse in that state.  But, they can handle their dissolution in Illinois.  Illinois applies the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) to same sex marriages and civil unions.  The IDMA allows for the fairest dissolution of our marital type unions, rather than trying to apply laws that are unrelated to a marital type union which is more of a dissolution of a business partnership approach.

How does an Illinois court determine custody?


When Illinois parents split, one of the key issues is child custody. But figuring out who will get custody of the child is sometimes confusing. Many believe that the courts favor mothers, but the reality is that courts favor the best interests of the child. Sometimes that interest means the child will live with the mother, other times with the father.

Oasis singer embroiled in child-support dispute


For many Illinoisans, having a baby is one of the greatest moments of their life. The newfound life can bring great joy and purpose. But that milestone can become a painful wound if the parents have to endure an acrimonious breakup that centers on the child. Take, for example, Liam Gallagher, the singer for Oasis, and the mother of his child.

Establishing paternity, legal rights and responsibilities


A baby is a treasure, but he or she also is a life-altering adjustment. Nurturing that newly formed life from infancy to adulthood can be a tall task for even the most determined mother or father. That journey -- although enormously rewarding -- is also enormously time-consuming and money-intensive. To avoid meeting these commitments alone, Illinoisans may benefit from looking into establishing paternity.