The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

discovery, review, Aurora divorce attorneyOne of the parts of the divorce process that many people find the most distasteful is the discovery process. However, if you and your lawyer fail to do thorough job of discovery it can harm your current case and even affect your options for years to come.

What is Discovery?

Discovery is the process of finding out about the other side's case. In a divorce case this usually mostly involves understanding the finances. The basic tools of discovery include:

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change your name, divorce, Illinois Divorce AttorneyIf you took your husband’s last name when you got married, you will be faced with a potentially difficult decision upon your divorce. Of course, the divorce process includes many challenging decisions, but you may find deciding what to do about your name to be among the most conflicted. From an official, legal perspective, changing your name back is easy, but the impact of your changing your name can affect you on a much deeper, emotional level.

While there are examples of divorce decrees requiring a woman to change her name after divorce, for the most part, nobody can force you into a decision. It is a very personal consideration impacted by a wide range of factors, and the right answer is whichever choice satisfies you. In making the decision about changing your name, think about some of the concerns that countless other women have considered:

Your Personal Identity: Who do you see yourself to be? Are you Mrs. X, simply by virtue of being Mr. X’s wife, or has Mrs. X simply been a name associated with a strong, independent woman? If you need to create a clean separation from him, then consider changing your name. If the name does not feel like a strong connection to your ex, maybe think about keeping it, depending upon other factors.

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divorce, uncontested divorce, Illinois Family Law AttorneyWhen you got married, you probably never anticipated that the day would come when divorce was not only a possibility, but the right decision. You and your spouse, over the years, may have grown apart and realized that it was not in either of your best interests to remain in an unhappy marriage. Even as you end your marriage, however, it is entirely reasonable for you both to want the best for the other person. Just because you will no longer be married does not mean you must hate each other or that you need to “win” the divorce. If you find yourself in such a situation, an uncontested divorce may provide the closure you need for your marriage without the stress and hassle of courtroom litigation.

Irreconcilable Differences

Virtually all uncontested divorces are granted on the grounds of irreconcilable differences. Currently under Illinois law, divorce is a possibility on fault grounds including infidelity, abandonment, and others, but fault grounds are much less likely to result in an amicable divorce. (Fault grounds are also being eliminated from the state’s divorce laws beginning in 2016, but that will be addressed in a future post.)  Thus, an uncontested divorce assumes no fault for the breakdown of the marriage and instead focuses on creating an equitable post-divorce situation for both spouses and their children.

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co-parenting, co-parenting conflict, parallel parenting, child custody battle, divorce and communication, Aurora family law attorneySeveral articles have been written with advice on how to co-parent after a divorce. But what if an ex-spouse makes it completely impossible to work together to raise a child?

Anger and resentment play a big part in the reason why an individual is unable to put the needs of children first. Mediation or therapy may even fail to help bridge the gap. The angry parent could go as far as trying to convince other adults in the child’s life—such as teachers, coaches, and friends’ parents—that the ex is an 'awful' person. In ways, it can be a losing battle. But rather than try to continue to co-parent with someone who has no intention to work together, various experts recommend parallel parenting instead.

Parallel parenting is a way of co-parenting by dissociating with the other parent and having as little contact as possible. The benefits of parallel parenting allow the child to enjoy a relationship with both parents. However, the child does not have to deal with the conflict nor is he or she placed in the middle of the parents’ battles.

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Aurora divorce lawyer, dividing assets, equitable distribution, financial security, Illinois divorce, Chicago divorce attorney, property division, financial assets, liquidation of assetsOne of the most uncomfortable and difficult parts of an Illinois divorce is the process of dividing property, and the subsequent liquidation of assets that often occurs. There are a host of different issues to consider based on each individual situation, and your response can impact both your short and long term financial health. In the United States, there are two ways of dividing property in a divorce depending on the state in which you live. In Illinois, the principle of equitable distribution applies and gives the court a lot of discretion when splitting assets.

In equitable distribution the courts can consider several factors before rendering any financial decision. Factors include:

  • The age of both spouses;
  • How long the marriage has lasted;
  • Any and all health issues;
  • A spouse's contribution to the other's education or training;
  • Any property or income added into the marriage by each spouse; and
  • The economic stability of each party individually.

In addition to the above factors, alimony and child support issues can also be weighed. And if a decision was made for one spouse to specifically not pursue a career in order to take care of children, this decision can be taken into consideration in order to ensure the financial security of everyone involved.

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The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.

630-409-8184

1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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