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Peoria Family Law Blog

Spousal maintenance may be difficult to resolve

Getting a divorce can be emotionally and financially draining no matter how amicable the process may seem. One aspect of divorce that can be particularly challenging to resolve is spousal maintenance, formerly known as alimony. The state of Illinois utilizes formulas to determine the amount of maintenance that should be paid following a divorce.

When two divorcing individuals cannot see eye to eye on maintenance, they each can present the facts of their case to a judge. The judge will then decide if maintenance needs to be paid as well as how long the maintenance should be paid. The court considers several factors when it comes to awarding maintenance to someone in a divorce proceeding.

Information gathering needed to start divorce process off strong

Dissolving an Illinois marriage can be emotionally and financially devastating. It can be difficult to know where to start when getting ready to proceed through the divorce process. A few tips may help people to start off strong when embarking on this type of family law proceeding.

First, it is essential to gather relevant personal information. This includes both spouses' names, Social Security Numbers and dates of birth. Other important pieces of information to collect are details about both parties' prior marriages and their children, their current occupations and employers, any academic degrees and the reason for the divorce.

The dissolution of civil unions similar to divorce

A civil union in the state of Illinois is a relationship between two individuals that is recognized legally. People who are in civil unions can be either the opposite sex or the same sex. In addition, both parties in a union must be 18 years old or older.

A civil union is governed by a law that took effect in 2011, called the Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act. Sometimes, this legal relationship is called a domestic partnership. These legal relationships provide all of the protections, benefits, rights and interests afforded to married couples under Illinois law.

Family home may be kept or sold as part of divorce

A family home in Illinois is where memories are created. These typically include family gatherings during the holidays, or bringing of new babies home from the hospital. However, this same home, filled with such good memories, can become a point of contention for a couple going through divorce in Illinois.

Figuring out exactly what to do with the marital home during the divorce process can be emotionally and financially challenging. It is important to weigh both the benefits and the negatives of holding onto the house. After all, the wrong decision could lead to financial difficulties in the future.

Divorce decisions have tax implications

Dividing debt and property can be a major financial task during the process of dissolving a marriage. After all, both one's debt and one's assets have a huge impact on one's life going forward. However, there is another hurdle to overcome during the divorce process in Illinois: tax implications.

People going through divorce often overlook the tax implications of the decisions they make during this type of family law proceeding. For instance, after getting divorced, a person who gets a large chunk of money through property division may have to pay capital gains taxes. In addition, both parties have to change their tax filing statuses moving forward.

Divorce can impact financial status in retirement

The process of getting divorced can understandably take a toll on a person, both emotionally and financially. The financial cost of getting a divorce goes beyond legal fees, however: It can also include having to maintain two homes and watch electricity bills and other costs double. This can have long-term consequences on both former spouses, including preventing people in Illinois from being prepared for retirement.

In many cases during divorce, a woman with children wants to keep the family home and is willing to trade away available retirement assets for it. However, this can be a huge mistake. Sometimes the woman simply cannot afford the costs associated with maintaining the house, and even if she can, she may end up being behind on her retirement savings.

Wise moves can prevent divorce from hurting finances

Going through the divorce process in Illinois can take its toll, both emotionally and financially. Every divorce proceeding is different, as couples have varying financial situations and may require unique custodial arrangements for their children. However, a couple of tips may help navigate the process in a financially beneficial manner.

One party may be tempted to move out of the marital home immediately. However, it really may be more beneficial to stay put. Otherwise, the spouse might claim that he or she has abandoned the family.

Handling assets an important focus during divorce

Dealing with the process of dissolving a marriage in Illinois can be challenging no matter how wealthy a person is. Unfortunately, amid the emotions that come with getting divorced, many people forget essential aspects when drafting their divorce orders. Some tips may help people to draft personally beneficial divorce orders.

First, people who have businesses would be wise to do detailed investigations of their businesses' assets. The assets of a business are usually hard to liquidate because the owner of the business might not have the ability to dispose of the business's assets without the co-shareholders' consent and without impacting his or her capacity to earn income. An attorney can examine all of the person's assets, as well as the person's debts, which are also critical to address during the divorce process.

Reducing joint debt wise during divorce process

Getting divorced in Illinois can understandably make a person feel turned upside down emotionally. However, a person can also feel in limbo financially. Some tips may help people to protect their financial statuses when going through the process of divorce.

One important aspect concerning finances that often gets overlooked during separation and divorce is joint debt. While two people are taking the necessary steps to split up, they need to continue to make payments on any outstanding debt accounts that they have in their names. They can check their credit reports for lists of these joint debt accounts, which may include credit cards.

Protecting your children in divorce

If anyone said marriage would be easy, they were clearly wrong. Likewise for anyone who says divorce is easy. In fact, divorce is often a very difficult, emotional process. Matters become even more tangled when children are involved.

A recent article on divorce and custody disputes says there are ways divorcing parents can minimize "stress and sadness for your smalls."

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