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Naperville guardian ad litem lawyerUnfortunately, divorces do not often involve much amicability, especially on issues related to children. Divorcing parents may not see eye to eye on what is best for a child of the marriage. This can result in major disagreements that do not have a clear solution.

During a divorce, a child’s best interests can be put on the back burner or forgotten altogether. In order to avoid this, a judge may appoint a guardian ad litem (GAL) to the case to help understand the situation and determine what solutions would be in the child’s best interest.

What is a GAL?

A GAL is an attorney who has been trained and certified to handle child-related issues. A GAL can be appointed in any case that involves child support, child custody, allocation of parental responsibilities, parenting time, parental relocations or the general welfare of a child. Though the GAL is a licensed attorney, he or she does not act as an attorney for either side. Rather, the GAL’s role is to examine the circumstances of the case and act as an advocate for the child’s best interests.

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Wheaton paternity lawyerThe number of babies born to unwed mothers has dramatically increased in the past 50 years or so. According to the Pew Research Center, around 5 percent of births in 1960 were to unmarried women. Today, the number of babies born to unmarried mothers is somewhere around 40 percent. While the acceptance of birth outside of marriage has grown, many mothers now find that they must go about other ways of establishing paternity for their children.

In the state of Illinois, paternity can be established in one of four ways: through assumed paternity, through a signed and completed Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity, through an Administrative Paternity Order or through an Order of Paternity.

Assumed Paternity

One of the most common ways of establishing paternity is through assumed paternity. The state of Illinois assumes that when a child is born to a married mother, the husband is the father of the child. If the mother was married or in a civil union when the child was born or within 300 days before the child was born, the husband is legally presumed to be the father of the child. If the mother was not married during that time, she must go about establishing paternity through one of the other ways.

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Posted on in Family Law

Wheaton child support lawyerIn today’s job market, it is becoming increasingly necessary to have education beyond a high school diploma. Regardless of whether that means attending a trade school or earning a degree, the price of higher education continues to increase as a direct result of supply and demand economics. Not only do parents feel the pressure to ensure the best life for their children, but Illinois also puts additional pressure on parents to cover this demand by ordering parents to pay for undergraduate education.

The requirement leaves many divorced Illinois parents wondering, who is ultimately responsible for the bill?

Your Divorce Occurred in the Past

If your divorce occurred years ago when college planning was the last thing on your mind, it is not unusual to require a modification of terms. First, review the original divorce decree to see if it included any stipulations regarding higher education. This step must be completed well before the child begins schooling or acquires any education expenses. If the issue was on reserve to review at a later date, failing to discuss the decree until after cost accumulation may result in a denial of assistance for the current expenses.

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