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Peoria Family Law Blog

Prenuptial agreement can protect assets during divorce

In an age of increased divorce statistics and late-in-life marriages, prenuptial agreement can still be a touchy subject. As an Illinois couple devotes themselves to a lifelong marriage, it might be difficult to imagine a divorce later on down the road. Indeed, some couples may not even need to think about a prenuptial, but for individuals who have certain assets to protect, a prenup can be an invaluable aid during a divorce.

First thing's first -- it is important to determine whether a couple needs a prenuptial agreement in the first place. If the couple is still young and entering the marriage with roughly the same amount of assets, there may not be much need for the protection that a prenup offers. Instead, this useful tool might be better suited for couples who are slightly older and have had time to work longer, thus acquiring more worthwhile assets.

'80s pop star Richard Marx announces divorce

A popular singer from the 1980s apparently won't be waiting for his wife any longer. Recently, Illinois resident Richard Marx announced that he and his long-time wife plan to divorce. Since the two were married for such a long period of time, splitting joint assets -- such as homes or vehicles -- might be a monumental task.

Richard Marx shot to fame with romantic pop singles like "Right Here Waiting," among others. His wife, former actress Cynthia Rhodes, is perhaps most well-known for playing the part of "Penny" in the 1987 film Dirty Dancing. The two actually met several years before that, when Marx was part of the soundtrack for a movie in which she was appearing.

Spring cleaning may help Illinois individuals prep for divorce

There is something about the warm, sunny weather in spring that invokes an almost insatiable need to clean in many of us. As the last of winter's chill is shrugged off, spring cleaning can be applied to more than just the linen closet or Tupperware drawer. Those in Illinois who are planning to divorce might find that a little tidying of their finances is in order.

Important financial documents -- such as copies of credit card statements -- can play a vital role in divorce proceedings. Obtaining copies of any and all important or relevant documents early on can make things much easier down the road. If the need for the documents arise, copies can easily be handed over without much fuss over where the documents are or who has them.

New Illinois bill favors non-custodial parent in child custody

When it comes to decisions that splitting couples are faced with during the course of a divorce, decisions concerning children are often the most important. Sadly, these decisions can also sometimes be the hardest. A bill that is currently up for consideration in the Illinois House seeks to alleviate at least some of the pressure that accompanies decisions for things like child custody and support.

Currently, the standard amount of parenting time allotted to non-custodial parents isn't much. In Illinois, they're granted about fours a week and every other weekend with their children. One father says that this simply isn't enough time, and it makes bonding between the non-custodial parent and child extremely difficult and uneven compared to the custodial parent.

Orders of protection can help but need to be extended

For many people, their spouse may be the most trusted person in their life. Sadly this is not always the case, and some domestic violence victims may feel as though they have little protection. In Illinois, orders of protection can go a long way to protect their victims, but they must be kept updated in order to do any real good.

An Illinois woman is dead, and authorities say that it was her husband who killed her. Apparently, he had a documented history of domestic violence, and his wife had received multiple orders of protection. The orders against her husband were issued over the course of only a year and a half. However, neither of them seemed to last long.

Illinois state rep. fights for tougher child support penalties

Child support can be an important aspect of the financial life of many children. Whether for shoes or housing, extracurricular sports or food, the monetary contribution from a non-custodial parent can provide a tremendous amount of support for a child. However, an Illinois state representative says that not enough children are receiving the child support that they need, and she would like to do something about it.

Deb Conroy, an Illinois state representative, points out that the state does not pursue any felony charges for parents who owe back child support. She also points out that many neighboring states press felony charges for delinquent payments. In order to combat the back child support that can sometimes appear to be unreachable, she recently filed a bill that would allow the state to initiate felony penalties for parents who not only owe back child support, but who are also financially equipped to make the court-ordered payments.

Illinois divorce can be made easier by collaboration on assets

When breaking free from a bad marriage, it may be easy for some people to simply focus on the emotional aftermath. Doing so could possibly leave Illinois divorcees in a financial jumble if assets are not properly attended to during a divorce. Although proceeding with a divorce, it may be the best time for both parties to work together.

Ultimately, it can benefit both parties of a divorce to work together when it comes to assets. Fighting over certain assets can actually cost quite a bit of money as well as extra time spent in court. Working closely with a third-party mediator can help keep a divorcing couple and their financial assets on track during the course of a divorce.

Prenups may protect assets and children after divorce

Some young couples who find themselves head-over-heels in love might turn their nose up at a prenuptial agreement. There are those who say this is fine, and that the ideal candidate for a prenuptial agreement might not be that young and debt-free couple after all. Illinois couples that include one or more partners with either significant assets or debt might not enjoy planning ahead for a possible divorce, but it could be one of the smartest moves to make.

Those who have been previously divorced might be more apt to insist upon a prenuptial agreement before any subsequent marriages. In some cases, they may have lost much of what they had before entering into their first marriage. When approaching a second marriage, it might be the case that they are simply looking to avoid the potential for a re-enactment.

Victim of domestic violence pleased that husband is behind bars

A woman who suffered at the hands of her abuser for decades is happy yet cautious to see the man behind bars. A victim of domestic violence, the Illinois woman received an order of protection against her husband in the days leading up to Valentine's Day of 2012. While an order of protection is generally an effective tool for preventing further attacks against domestic abuse victims, in this case it may have been most helpful afterward.

The victim claims that the abuse began early on in the relationship. At one point before the Illinois woman and her husband were married, she attempted to end things between the two, but she was met with a violent outburst against her parents and a threat that she would never be able to leave him. In a state of fear, she believed her soon-to-be husband and decided to stay with him. After they were married and had a child, the abuse didn't stop.

Determining child custody is not always an easy task

Divorcing parents often have one thing at the front of their minds -- they want to know who will have custody of their children. Child custody is quite often not as black and white as some people think. Even if some Illinois parents can behave amicably through the divorce process, there are still several factors to take into account when determining custody.

Some might hear the term joint legal custody and mistakenly assume that this means that the child will be living with both parents. While joint legal custody does entitle both parents to making decisions, it also means that the child will only be living with one of his or her parents. If a divorcing couple would also prefer to share physical custody, then joint legal physical custody is the next option.

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