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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North Aurora divorce attorney

A couple can disagree about many issues during a divorce, but it is no surprise that financial matters are one of them. The decisions that you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse make during your divorce are extremely important because they are decisions that will end up affecting you for quite a long time afterward. When it comes to finances, the decisions that are made could quite possibly affect you for the rest of your life, which is why you want to be sure to protect your assets at all costs. One such way to do this is through the use of a temporary financial restraining order, which can protect your assets from being misused or wasted by your spouse.

What Is a Temporary Financial Restraining Order?

When most people hear the words “restraining order,” they think of an order protecting a person from physical violence. However, a financial restraining order functions along those same lines by protecting your marital assets from being transferred, misused, borrowed against, destroyed, or spent by your spouse during your divorce. Temporary financial restraining orders are a common tool utilized by spouses going through contentious high-asset divorces, but any couple could benefit from the order.

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North Aurora divorce attorney property division

By far, one of the things that couples state is the most stressful during a divorce is the financial aspect of the proceedings. When you get a divorce, you and your spouse must come to an agreement as to how nearly everything the two of you own will be divided. This includes both tangible items, such as vehicles and your marital home, in addition to intangible assets and debts, such as bank accounts and credit cards. The courts encourage you to come to an agreement about the division of your property among the two of you, but that is not always possible. If the court must intervene, a variety of factors will be used to determine an equitable distribution of assets.

Dividing Marital Property

If you are like most married couples, you and your spouse probably jointly own most everything. This makes things easier during a marriage, but during a divorce, it can complicate matters. If you and your spouse both have your name legally attached to items such as vehicles, homes, other real estate property, or credit card debt, it may be confusing when it comes to dividing the property. Because many of these items cannot just be split in half, some creative methods are often used to accomplish the division in a fair manner.

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Aurora divorce attorney property division

There are two things that people are usually the most concerned about when they get divorced: their money and their kids. If you or your spouse has filed for divorce, a lot of time and effort may be spent worrying about finances during your divorce proceedings -- but that does not stop mistakes from happening. The money decisions you make throughout the legal process of ending your marriage not only affect the outcome of the divorce, but they can also affect the rest of your life. Here are a few common financial mistakes that are easy to make during your divorce and how you can avoid them:

Not Understanding the Difference Between Marital and Non-Marital Property

One of the first things you must do in your divorce is to determine what assets are and are not subject to division. In the state of Illinois, certain property is considered to be non-marital property, which is typically not divided in a divorce. These can be items or assets that you or your spouse each bought or received as gifts before your wedding. 

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Aurora property division lawyerAs much as it is an emotional process, a divorce is also a legal process that is meant to separate you and your spouse from having anything lawfully in common. Like any legal proceeding, this can take time to complete, especially when it comes to the division of your assets. This is typically a point of contention between spouses when getting a divorce. When you are married, you and your spouse may have accumulated a lot of property together, but asset division deals with much more than just physical property. You must also divide things such as retirement funds, bank accounts, life insurance, and even any debts you and your spouse owe. The state of Illinois has a specific process for doing this, and it is important that you understand how your assets will be divided in the event a judge must intervene.

Distinguishing Between Marital and Non-Marital Property

In Illinois, only marital property and marital debt are subject to division. Marital property is any property, assets, or debts that were obtained during the marriage, except for the following:

  • Property given as a gift or that was inherited

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois child support lawyer,The process of allocating assets during a divorce is often one of the most contentious issues between couples. The state of Illinois practices equitable distribution of assets and liabilities, rather than equal distribution. This means that there is nothing saying a judge has to assign half of the marital estate to each spouse -- one spouse could end up walking away from the divorce with more money or more debt. Because of this, some spouses may be tempted to cover up assets so they may keep them for themselves. Illinois courts strongly recommend that couples try to come to an agreement on property distribution on their own, but this is not always possible, especially if both spouses are not willing to be truthful with each other.

This is often the step of the divorce process in which “discovery” comes into play. Discovery is the exchange of information between the two spouses and their attorneys. During this step, both spouses are required by law to be fully and completely transparent about the issue at hand. This means each spouse must disclose any and all assets, including both marital and non-marital assets.

The Role of a Forensic Accountant

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois child custody lawyer,There are many reasons why couples get divorced. Infidelity, financial problems, lack of commitment and different priorities are all common reasons why couples choose to get divorced, but they all typically contain one major common theme -- a lack of trust. When you no longer trust the person you are married to, it is difficult to have a successful marriage. During a divorce, it is not uncommon for one or both spouses to have assets that they have attempted to hide from the other. While this may seem like a good way to keep your spouse from getting certain things in a divorce, it is illegal. Full disclosure is required in divorces. If you feel like your spouse may be hiding things from you, here are a few ways you can try to uncover hidden assets in your divorce: Look Over Tax Returns A good place to start looking for hidden assets is on your tax returns. Pull your tax returns from the last five years and examine them carefully. You should be looking for any inconsistencies in the returns, such as inconsistencies in income, itemizations of assets, real estate taxes, mortgage interest. Keep an Eye on Your Bank Accounts Take a look at your joint bank accounts. Are there any canceled checks from your checking account? Are there unusual withdrawals or deposits into your checking or savings accounts? If so, you may be dealing with a spouse who has attempted to hide money from you. Make sure you get copies of all bank account statements to use in court. Utilize Public Records

Public records can be extremely helpful when you are looking for hidden assets. Some jurisdictions allow you to access certain public records online, but all jurisdictions have public records on hand at the courthouse. When looking through public records, you should focus your attention on:

  • Property deeds;
  • Real estate appraisals;
  • Tax assessments;
  • Loan applications; and
  • Business records.

Team Up With a DuPage County Asset Discovery Attorney

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer,While you and your spouse were married, you probably accumulated quite the collection of assets, which can range from money in the bank to vehicles and real estate. Many couples who divorce own a home together, which can be difficult to deal with when it comes time to split your assets during the divorce. If you and your spouse purchased the house during the marriage, your house will be considered marital property. If one of you owned the home prior to tying the knot, then your home may be considered non-marital property unless you and your spouse refinanced the mortgage or put both of your names on the deed to the home. There are basically three options that you and your spouse have when it comes to dividing the value of your home: you sell the house, one of you keeps the house, or you both keep the house. Everyone’s situation is different, so what may work for other people may not work for your family. Before you make the decision, you should weigh the pros and cons of each option. You Sell the House The easiest thing to do for most couples would be to sell the house, split the proceeds, and go their separate ways. This option is obviously ideal for couples whose home has appreciated in value, but couples whose home has depreciated in value may want to look at other options. If the house has appreciated in value, capital gains may be owed on the sale of the house and both spouses will be responsible for paying half of the bill. One Spouse Keeps the House This can be a tricky option. If one spouse wants to keep the family home, that spouse will have to become the sole owner of the home. To do this, the spouse will have to refinance the house with a new mortgage. The new mortgage would take the spouse’s own creditworthiness into consideration when refinancing and your interest rate could go up if this happens. You may also need to buy your other spouse’s half of the home from them, which could become expensive. You Both Keep the House Though it may be rather unusual, some couples may agree that the best option is to keep the home as a jointly owned asset. Most of the time, this is a short-term option for couples who either do not immediately qualify for a new mortgage, do not have the funds to buy out each other’s half, or just do not want to sell the house because of the children. Consult with an Aurora, IL Property Division Attorney

Making the decision of what to do with the family home can be a tough one. Home is where you make memories and many people have a tough time letting go of that. If you are unsure of what option would be best for you and your family, a knowledgeable DuPage County property division lawyer can help. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we have extensive experience valuing and dividing all kinds of marital assets, including family homes. For more information or to inquire about a consultation, call our office today at 630-409-8184.

 

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Posted on in Prenuptial Agreement

prenupPlanning a wedding requires a great deal of organization and patience. You probably have a checklist of items that you need to get done before the big day, which may or may not include finalizing your prenuptial agreement. If you and your fiance have chosen to create and sign a prenuptial agreement, you will soon figure out that it comes with its own checklist of things to consider, which can become overwhelming when you are trying to plan a wedding. Having a solid prenuptial agreement that has examined all of the necessary factors is important to the successful implementation of the agreement in the event that you do get divorced.

Premarital Assets and Debts

Things that you bring into the marriage - whether they are assets or debts - are considered premarital assets and debts and are typically not subject to division during a divorce. In order to safeguard that property, putting it into the prenuptial agreement is a good idea. You can also stipulate what happens to the property if it is used to purchase other things during the marriage.

Marital Property

This is all assets and debts that you and your spouse accumulate during the time you are married. You can choose to either stick with Illinois law, which is to divide the property equitably in the event of a divorce, or you can create your own arrangement. You can go so far as to stipulate what specific items you will keep and what items you will give up.

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois child support lawyer,When you are getting a divorce, you must come to an agreement with your spouse about how your assets will be divided. If you cannot come to an agreement, you will have to go to court and the judge will decide what is fair. Either way, dividing your assets can be a big headache, especially if you have large assets such as a house, cars, retirement or pension plans, stocks, brokerage accounts or businesses. It can be difficult to determine what is fair when it comes to distribution of your assets, but when it comes to Illinois law, there are certain criteria that judges use to make these decisions. Determining Marital Property vs. Non-Marital Property

The first thing a judge will do in a division of assets proceeding is determine which property and assets are marital property and which are not subject to division. The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act outlines the types of assets and property that are considered marital and non-marital property. According to the act, marital property is any property, including debts and other obligations, acquired by either spouse during the marriage, except:

  • Property acquired by gift, legacy or descent and any property acquired in exchange for this property;
  • Property acquired in exchange for property acquired prior to the marriage;
  • Property acquired by a spouse after a legal separation; and
  • Property excluded by a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.
Equitable Distribution of Marital Property

When a judge is left to decide which spouse gets which property, they must consider certain factors that are outlined in the act. These factors include:

  • Each spouse’s contribution to the acquisition or increase or decrease in value of the property;
  • The contribution of a spouse as a homemaker to the family;
  • The dissipation of the marital property by each spouse;
  • The value of the property;
  • The duration of the marriage;
  • Relevant economic factors of each spouse;
  • Any obligations from a prior marriage;
  • Any prenuptial or postnuptial agreements;
  • The age, health, occupation, income, skills, employability, liabilities and needs of each spouse;
  • The custodial provisions for any children;
  • The prevalence of any spousal maintenance;
  • The opportunity of each spouse for future assets or income; and
  • The tax consequences of the division of property.
The act also specifies that property and assets are divided without regard to any marital misconduct. Contact a DuPage County Divorce Attorney

If you are going through a divorce, you probably know about the stress and difficulty that comes with dividing your assets. Though dividing your marital assets can be troublesome, it does not have to be--with the help of an Aurora divorce attorney, your assets can be divided equitably and in your favor. Contact the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C. to begin discussing your case. Call 630-409-8184 to schedule a consultation.

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Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois child custody lawyer, attorney fees,Even though the notion of planning for the end of your marriage before you are even married is not the most romantic thought, it is smart decision making. A prenuptial agreement is a legal document that dictates how each spouse’s assets are divided if the marriage ends in divorce. There are quite a few things that a prenuptial agreement can--and should--contain. Premarital Assets and Debts You should make a list of your assets and debts that are currently in your name and that you acquired before your marriage. These assets can be anything from savings and brokerage accounts, a car, jewelry or a house. You and your spouse should be upfront with each other about assets that you are bringing into the marriage. You should also discuss how you will handle the division of premarital assets and debts in the event that they become intertwined with marital property. Marital Property In general, marital property is any asset or debt that is acquired during the marriage. The prenuptial agreement should spell out how you handle the assets and income that you gain during the marriage. You could possibly split marital property 50/50, or you could distribute the marital property as equitably as possible, meaning it may not be 50/50. This can save you a lot of time in the future if you do end up getting divorced. Spousal Support Though you are not required to have a section for spousal support in a prenuptial agreement, it can be extremely helpful to have your wishes down if you do get a divorce. Depending on you and your spouse’s assets, living expenses and other things, you may be entitled to spousal support. If your prenuptial agreement contains clauses about spousal support, the courts must follow the agreement’s terms. Get Support from an Aurora Prenuptial Agreement Attorney

Prenuptial agreements are becoming more and more popular and are losing the stigma that they once held. This is due partly because couples are tending to enter into marriage with a lot more assets than they did 40 years ago. If you are engaged and think a prenuptial agreement is right for you, a skilled DuPage County prenuptial agreement attorney can help you draft an agreement that fits your needs. Contact the Law Offices of Matthew M. Williams, P.C. at 630-409-8184 to set up a consultation.

 

Source:

https://www.americanbar.org/groups/gpsolo/publications/gpsolo_ereport/2012/march_2012/premarital_agreement_issues_checklist.html

Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois child custody lawyer, attorney fees,The reasons couples get divorced vary from the very common to quite unique. In some cases, tales of the odd and downright unbelievable accompany court filings. Whether they are true or just some ploy to gain sympathy from the court in an effort to win more a more favorable alimony settlement, there are anecdotes of some very bizarre reasons why individuals have sought a divorce from their spouse.

Examining Some of The Most Bizarre

Infidelity, abuse, chemical dependency, mental illness and even irreconcilable differences are probably some of the most commonly applied reasons for divorce, Here, however, we are taking a look at some of the strangest reasons people filed for divorce from around the world.

  • My wife is possessed: Not possessive, but rather possessed … as in, by an evil spirit or the devil. An Italian man used this as his grounds for seeking a no-fault divorce. He even supplied witnesses to his wife’s odd behavior. In the end, he got his divorce.
  • Marriage turns ice cold: A Japanese couple filed for divorce after the husband told his wife he really did not care for the animated film, Frozen. She loved the movie and was so put out by her husband’s failure to recognize the film’s greatness that she asked for a divorce.
  •  Nice try, but you are still alive: In 2004 man suffered a serious illness during which time his heart stopped beating. In 2007 he filed for divorce claiming he and his wife were no longer legally married since he had died, although not permanently. The judge did not buy it.
  • Easy come, easy go: After 25 years of marriage, a woman filed for divorce from her husband, seemingly out of the blue. The man was baffled until he and his lawyers learned the woman won more than one million dollars in the lottery and was hoping to keep it all for herself. No such luck. The judge ordered her to turn over all her winnings to her husband.

Retain a Resourceful Illinois Divorce Lawyer to Help You Gain a Proper Settlement

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Posted on in Division of Property

Illinois custody attorney, Illinois family law attorney, Illinois divorce lawyer,Most couples going through a divorce are looking for a fair division of the marital assets, alimony and child support amounts they can live with, and, ultimately, the legal dissolution of a marriage that just was not working. However, every so often we hear about some really odd demands made by one party or the other that cause us to shake our heads in disbelief. Strange Demands, Strange Results Granted, divorce laws around the world vary greatly. Some tend to favor one party more than the other. Perhaps the only thing more strange than the demands made by the parties in these divorce cases, is that the judge actually granted them in finalizing the divorce decree. A Cambodian couple ordered to split their assets took things quite literally and divided their house in half. The husband towed his half away, perhaps to enclose it before the rainy season. A judge in Spain ordered a couple to divide their apartment in half as it was deemed best for the well-being of their two young daughters. In Australia a man had to dig up the remains of his parents, who he buried on his family property, after a judge awarded the property to his wife. A Nobel laureate who was divorced in 1988 had to pay his wife half of 1995 winnings because their settlement included a clause for any future Nobel winnings up to and including 1995. If he had won in 1996 his wife would have received nothing. In India, a man who claimed his wife spent all his money on ice cream, was ordered to pay $1,300 per month in support, and an additional $2.50 each month so his wife could buy ice cream. Of course, these stories all seem to border on the extreme, but the lesson is that if you feel you are entitled to something as part of your divorce there is no harm in asking for it. Work with an Experienced Aurora Divorce Attorney When it comes to dividing marital property as part of the final divorce settlement there is bound to be some disagreement among the parties. This is when it will pay off to find and retain an Illinois divorce lawyer that will work on your behalf to see that you receive everything to which you are entitled. When you rely on the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C. for help in pursuing your divorce, you will benefit from years of experience and their dedication to client satisfaction. You can schedule a free consultation when you call their offices today. Sources: http:/mentalfloss.com/article/23385/10-bizarre-divorce-settlements https:/www.oddee.com/item_99656.aspx" divorce are looking for a fair division of the marital assets,alimony andchild support amounts they can live with, and, ultimately, the legal dissolution of a marriage that just was not working. However, every so often we hear about some really odd demands made by one party or the other that cause us to shake our heads in disbelief.

Strange Demands, Strange Results

Granted, divorce laws around the world vary greatly. Some tend to favor one party more than the other.

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divorce-financesBoth marriage and divorce create a wide variety of financial scenarios that impact both spouses, as well as children, over the course of months and years. Some believe the best way to maintain financial security, even before a divorce is considered, is to keep a secret account with funds of which your spouse is not aware.

Positive Aspects of a Secret Fund

Husbands and wives may find that opening a separate account apart from any joint accounts becomes a necessity. Some pros for doing so include:

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spouse filed, Chicago divorce, division of assets, division of property, filed for divorce, grounds for divorce, Illinois family lawyer, no-fault divorceGetting the notification that your spouse filed for divorce can wreak havoc on your emotions and cause you to panic about your next step. That does not have to be the case, however. You can elect to consult with and hire an Illinois family law professional.

In order to get divorced in Illinois, your spouse must have some kind of “grounds” for the divorce unless he or she files a petition of irreconcilable differences.

There are several varying types of grounds that can be alleged in order to obtain a divorce within the state. These include:
  • Bigamy;
  • Adultery;
  • Willful desertion (typically a period of one year is required for this to apply);
  • Habitual drunkenness;
  • Conviction of a felony;
  • Excessive drug use (typically a period of two years is required for this to apply);
  • Infection of a sexually transmitted disease from the spouse;
  • Impotence; and
  • An attempt is made to kill the spouse.
If your spouse has already filed for divorce, whether on fault grounds or through a petition of irreconcilable differences, you need representation, too. You should not attempt to go through a divorce on your own, particularly if your spouse has already hired an attorney to start the process. If this applies in your case, it is recommended that you consult with an attorney immediately.

Selecting an attorney with a background in family law and divorce issues is critical, because it will allow you to get the ball rolling quickly in response to a divorce filing from your spouse. Make sure you ask critical questions about division of property, child custody, and spousal support during your initial attorney consultation if those concerns are a part of your case. Knowing what to expect can go a long way towards preparing you and easing your nerves. Contact a Chicago divorce attorney today at 630-409-8184.

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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