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

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North Aurora divorce attorney

Since mid-January, we have been bombarded with cards, heart-shaped chocolates, and a whole lot of red and pink every time we walk into a store. Valentine’s Day is regarded mostly as a “greeting card” holiday, but celebrating it can bring a little fun into those cold winter days. For people who have gone through a separation or a divorce, however, February 14 is just another day to remind them that their romantic relationships have not worked out so well. Although it can be painful to be reminded of love, you do not have to spend the day moping. Instead of being miserable on Valentine’s Day, below are a few ways you can make the holiday fun again.

Spend Time With Family and Friends

The best way to get through the day is to surround yourself with your friends and family members. Going through a hard time is always much easier when you have a good support system. Plan a night out with your friends, siblings, or cousins and make a point to focus on them and not the couples around you.

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Kendall County prenuptial agreement attorney

When you tell people that you and your spouse have signed a prenuptial agreement, some may react with surprise. There are many benefits to getting a prenuptial agreement before you are married, but some people still feel a negative stigma against such documents. Although you may not have imagined your marriage would end in divorce when you were drafting the prenuptial agreement, it has now come to that point. Prenuptial agreements usually dictate how certain assets and property are divided in the event of a divorce, among other issues. However, if you no longer think the agreement is fair, can you do anything about it? It is important to know your options for contesting a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement if you find yourself getting divorced. 

Examining Your Prenup

Prenuptial agreements are legally binding documents, but they can be challenged. If you believe that your prenuptial agreement is not valid, you should contact your divorce attorney right away. He or she will be able to bring your concerns to the judge and will be able to help you examine the reasons why it would be unenforceable. Once the issue is brought to the court’s attention, a judge may invalidate specific sections of the agreement or even throw out the entire agreement. Here are a few common reasons why a prenuptial agreement may be found invalid:

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Geneva divorce attorney narcissism

When you think of the word “narcissist,” you may think of someone who is completely obsessed with his or her looks, who is a know-it-all, and who believes they can do no wrong. While this definition is certainly not false, narcissism is an actual clinical mental illness, characterized by an inflated sense of self-importance, a sense of entitlement, and an unwillingness to display empathy for others. Divorcing a narcissist is an entirely different ballgame than divorcing a mentally stable person, because a narcissist will take every opportunity he or she can to make the process as difficult as possible. Having an experienced attorney on your side who is skilled in dealing with highly contentious divorces is essential to surviving your divorce. Here are a few other tips to help if you are divorcing a narcissistic spouse:

  1. Understand Your Spouse Is Not Going to Play Fair

You want to believe that your spouse would never do anything to hurt you or your children. Sadly, a narcissist who is going through a divorce will often do whatever he or she can to cause you pain and suffering. Your spouse will do all that is in his or her power to “win” and will aim to make your life as miserable as possible. He or she will try to wear you down on certain issues, so it is critical that you stay strong and do not back down on matters that are important to you. 

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DuPage County asset division attorney

There are many things that you share with your spouse when you are married. For some people, one of the most stressful parts of divorce is figuring out what you and your spouse have to do to finalize the legal process and disentangle your finances. Before you start dividing up your assets and debts, you and your spouse must determine which of your assets are considered marital property and which assets will remain personal, non-marital property. In cases in which one spouse receives an inheritance during the marriage, the inheritance is usually considered to be non-marital property and resides with the spouse to whom it was given. However, this may not always be the case, so it is important to understand how these types of assets are handled in an Illinois divorce.

Marital and Non-Marital Property

In the state of Illinois, there is a distinction between marital and non-marital property. According to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, anything that a couple acquires during the marriage is considered to be marital property, aside from a few exceptions. One of those exceptions includes “property acquired by gift, legacy, or descent,” and inheritances fall into this category. In these instances, inheritances are typically not included in the marital estate alongside other property that is subject to division. With that being said, there are still some situations in which inheritance might still be subject to division during a divorce.

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Geneva parenting plan attorney

Getting a divorce can be a daunting task. There are many issues that you must address before you can finalize your divorce, and it can become even more complicated if you have minor children. Divorcing with kids can be overwhelming because of the emotional toll it takes on the entire family. One of the most important issues to resolve is how your children will be cared for after the marriage ends. In Illinois, a parenting plan is required by all couples who file for divorce and have minor children.

Parental Responsibilities in an Illinois Parenting Plan

Before your divorce can be finalized, Illinois law requires that you and your spouse have an agreed-upon parenting plan filed with the court. The parenting plan is a written agreement of how you and your ex-spouse will raise your children now that you are divorced. This legal document contains information about how parenting time will be split between the two of you, but also how parental responsibilities will be handled. At a minimum, Illinois parenting plans should address the following when it comes to allocating decision-making responsibilities:

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Aurora dissolution of marriage attorney

Statistics on the divorce rate are often vague and difficult to understand, and they may change depending on the source you consult. While some sources state that more than half of marriages end in divorce, others estimate that the divorce rate is actually somewhere between 40 and 50 percent. While the numbers can be debated, most sources agree on a few of the most common factors that are prevalent in many divorces. While these factors are not a guarantee that your marriage will not stand the test of time, their presence has been linked to the increased probability of divorce. Here are a few of the most common elements that can affect your odds of marital success:

  1. You Were Young When You Got Married

Many studies conducted have concluded that getting married at a very young age can be a predictor that your marriage will not last. A study in the Journal of Marriage and Family concluded that those who were married in their teens or early 20s had a higher chance of getting divorced than couples who waited until they were in their late 20s or 30s. This may be due to a lack of maturity or simply growing apart as spouses get older. 

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Batavia co-parenting attorneyGetting divorced when you have children brings about a wide variety of issues, worries, and concerns. Not only do you have to figure out how you will share parental responsibilities and how you will divide parenting time, but many parents also worry about how their children will be affected emotionally by the divorce. Statistics on this topic can be difficult to analyze; some sources say that divorce is detrimental to the mental and emotional health of children. While this can be true in some situations, a majority of experts agree that your children can grow up happy and healthy as long as they are able to experience a healthy co-parenting relationship between their parents. Co-parenting can be trying, even for parents who are amicable, but a peaceful relationship is not impossible.

Successful Co-Parenting Depends on Collaboration

You have heard it before, and you will most likely hear it many times during and after your divorce — cooperation and communication are key to success after divorce with children. You cannot hope to have a healthy co-parenting relationship with your ex if you do not know how to compromise or talk with each other effectively. Make it a habit to keep in regular touch with your ex about your child’s life, and always include him or her in important decisions.

Use Technology to Your Advantage

There are dozens of apps and websites available that were created to help people in your exact situation. So much of the success of your co-parenting relationship is dependent on communication, which also happens to be one of the hardest aspects of co-parenting. Using technology can help you and your ex discuss child-related issues. Websites such as Google Calendar can help you keep track of appointments and events for your child. Other companies such as Our Family Wizard have websites and apps to manage almost everything involved in co-parenting, such as parenting time schedules and expenses.

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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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