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

630-409-8184

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

Yorkville Office By Appointment

Initial Consultations via ZOOM Available


Aurora divorce attorney - Child Tax CreditsOn July 15, families in Illinois and around the country began receiving direct deposits or checks for advanced child tax credits for the tax year 2021. These payments are part of the American Rescue Plan. While the advanced payments are a welcome financial relief for many families, some parents are wondering how the IRS will ensure that the parent who receives the advanced tax credit funds is the same parent who claims the child as a dependent in situations where the parents are no longer together, and a parenting plan has been established.

American Rescue Plan

In March, President Joe Biden signed the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan. The plan was Washington D.C. lawmakers’ response to helping people financially recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. One provision in the plan calls for an increase in the child tax credit. For children between the ages of 6 to 17, the credit will be $3,000. For children under 6, the credit will be $3,600. The provision also calls for parents to receive advance payments of up to half the credit amount they will be entitled to for tax year 2021.

The move was lauded by both family advocates and economists who say that the increase and advanced payments will cut child poverty in half in both Illinois and throughout the country.

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Yorkville prenup lawyer business ownershipMost people have some sort of understanding as to what a prenuptial agreement is. Countless movies and television shows have depicted prenuptial agreements as documents that a wealthy person insists on being signed before the wedding to protect him or herself from a potential “gold-digging” spouse. While that is one reason to get a prenup, there has been a rise in prenuptial agreements in recent years for other reasons, especially among millennials. Prenuptial agreements can be extremely helpful in many ways, including creating protections for your business in the event you get a divorce.

Is Your Business Considered Marital Property?

In Illinois, only marital property is subject to division in the event of a divorce. Marital property includes anything that was acquired after you were married but before a divorce is settled or legal separation is declared. That being said, if you had a business before you were married, the ownership of the business will typically stay with you. This does not mean all is safe, however. If your spouse played any role in the business while you were married, he or she could be entitled to a portion of the growth in the value of the business.

How Can a Prenuptial Agreement Benefit You?

If you own any sort of company at the time you get married, have a business in the works, or plan to start a business in the future, you should seriously consider getting a prenuptial agreement. If you currently have your own company, a prenuptial agreement can specify how you will value the business in the future if you get a divorce, preventing a third-party valuation process down the road. It can also allow you to specify a certain percentage that your spouse will receive if you do get a divorce. This can prevent your spouse from getting too much of the value of your business if you decide to split up.

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DuPage County fathers' rights attorneyIn today’s world, most people would agree that a father plays just as an important role in raising a child as a mother. Many people also believe that a child deserves to have both parents present in his or her life. For some people, this can be difficult, especially if the child’s parents were not married when the child was born. In cases such as these, it is up to either the mother or father to petition to establish the paternity of the child, which can be done a few different ways. Establishing the paternity of the child creates a legal relationship between the child and his or her father. Until paternity is established, there is no legal relationship between the two, even if they are biologically related.

Presumed Paternity

In the state of Illinois, a man is presumed to be the father of a child if he was married or in a civil union with the child’s mother at the time the child was born. A man is also presumed to be a child’s father if he was married to the mother at any point within 300 days before the child was born. If the parents were not married or in a civil union during either of these times, the man has no legal presumption to the paternity of the child, and either parent must go about establishing paternity through signing a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity or through genetic testing and a court or administrative order.

Benefits of Establishing Paternity

There are quite a few reasons why a mother or father would want to establish paternity for his or her child. In most cases, establishing the paternity of the child gives both the child and the father rights they would not otherwise have. Benefits of establishing paternity include:

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer,Making the decision to get divorced is not one that comes easily to most people. A marriage does not break down overnight -- it takes months or even years to reach the point of no return for most divorcing couples. Once you have made the decision to get a divorce, the first step in what is often a long process is figuring out how you will go about the divorce and which divorce lawyer is right for you. Shopping for a divorce lawyer is a lot like shopping for a car -- they are not cheap, so it is important that you make your decision with care and thorough knowledge. If you are beginning the process of finding a divorce lawyer that would be a good fit for your family, here are a few tips that can help guide you:

Determine What You Need

Before you even contact any lawyers, you should figure out what exactly you are looking for in a divorce attorney. Which specific needs do you have? Is your divorce contested or is it straightforward? Do you need an attorney who especially experienced in certain parts of family law, such as child custody? Are you looking for an attorney with experience dealing with collaborative divorces, mediation or traditional divorces? Determining your needs can help determine what kind of lawyer you need.

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stepparent, Aurora family law attorneyBlended families come in many shapes, sizes, colors, and backgrounds. Some adopt to grow or start their families. Others have divorced and now have one single parent, or two partial or complete sets of parents and stepparents. Then there are those with a stepparent who is filling a gap that was created by an absentee or deceased parent. Though not the child’s biological parent, these stepparents provide a love, acceptance, and support that completes the family. In these instances, a stepparent adoption might be appropriate. Learn how to determine if it might be right for your family, and how you can move forward with the process.

Benefits of Stepparent Adoption

When you are already an active and influential part of a child’s life, it might seem redundant to file for adoption. However, there are some key benefits to stepparent adoption – namely the ability to assert legal rights to the child you already love. This right would allow you to seek parenting time, should your current marriage in divorce. It also gives you the ability to act as legal guardian if your spouse is unable to do so. Some examples of situations in which this might be helpful could include a medical emergency or an accident that leaves your spouse incapacitated.

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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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