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Naperville postnuptial agreement lawyer50 years ago, your average American probably would have raised their eyebrows in disbelief or widened their eyes in shock if you told them that you were getting a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. For years, there was a stigma against these types of agreements as being a way to plan for a divorce instead of trying to make a marriage work. Now, most people are much more agreeable to the idea of prenuptial or postnuptial agreements. Both types of agreements allow you to set forth terms for separation if your marriage heads down the track of divorce. The only difference between these two types of agreements is when they are signed — a prenuptial agreement is signed before the marriage, while a postnuptial agreement is signed any time after the marriage has been officiated.

Reasons to Get a Postnuptial Agreement

Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements are more common than they ever have been before, even for those who are not considered upper class. There are many situations in which getting a postnuptial agreement makes sense. These can include:

  • One spouse came into the marriage with significant assets, and a prenuptial agreement was not signed.

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Naperville Legal Separation AttorneyComing to the decision to get a divorce does not happen suddenly. It often takes couples months or even years to reach the point where they no longer want to be married. In the time between the start of marital trouble and the signing of divorce papers, couples often live apart from one another and lead separate lives. During this time, a couple may file for a legal separation, allowing them to address certain issues while they live separately. Following a legal separation, a couple will remain married in the eyes of the law. However, at any point, either spouse may decide to move forward with their divorce.

What Is a Legal Separation?

A legal separation is the “official” way of saying that you and your spouse are taking a break from one another. To get a legal separation in Illinois, there are a few requirements that you must meet. One of the most basic terms requires either you or your spouse to be a resident of Illinois for at least 90 days. Then, you will need to file a petition for legal separation in the court of the county that you or your spouse lives in. The petition will contain specific personal information, but most importantly, it will contain proof that you and your spouse currently live separately from one another and are not financially dependent on each other. During the process of legal separation, you will create a separation agreement that addresses how you will handle issues such as child custody, child support, spousal maintenance, and the division of marital property while you are living separately.

Can I Benefit From a Legal Separation?

Many people think that getting a legal separation will end their marriage. While it is true that a legal separation and a divorce have many similarities, they are not the same. A legal separation is a good stepping stone for couples who are contemplating the possibility of a divorce. A separation is not permanent, so it can sometimes allow a couple to reconcile and get back together. It may also allow spouses to maintain some of the benefits of being married, such as insurance coverage, while living separately, and it may be an option for ending a relationship while avoiding divorce for religious, cultural, or family reasons.

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Wheaton domestic violence attorneyDomestic violence is something that is, unfortunately, all too common. According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, more than 12 million people experience some sort of violence or abuse by family members or romantic partners each year. According to Illinois law, domestic violence occurs when a family or household member commits any act of abuse toward you or other members of your family or household. You do not have to be related by blood or even marriage for an act to be considered domestic violence; it can occur between people who are dating (or formerly dated) or even just people who live together (or formerly lived together). Abuse is not limited to physical harm, but can also be sexual or emotional.

Fortunately, there are things you can do to protect yourself and your family members if you are experiencing domestic violence. Getting an order of protection can be extremely beneficial in any domestic violence situation.

What Is an Order of Protection?

An order of protection is a civil court order that can protect those who have experienced domestic abuse. The order of protection will contain certain stipulations that limit what the respondent (your abuser) cannot do or is required to do. These rules are known as “remedies”. As a court order, the respondent is bound by law to obey the terms of the order, or they could face criminal penalties.

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DuPage County prenuptial agreement lawyerPrenuptial agreements have become more common than ever, yet many couples continue to tie the knot without this form of additional security. There is a preconceived notion that prenuptial agreements are only beneficial for the wealthy; however, every couple can benefit from a prenup. A prenuptial agreement is a legal document that outlines how certain issues will be handled if the couple ever files for divorce. The agreement must be signed by both parties, of their own free will, before the wedding takes place. There are many things that you can include in a prenuptial agreement, and it is important that you consider all of your options before you sign it.

The Engagement Ring

One of the basic purposes of a prenup is to protect your personal property from being considered marital property in the event of a divorce. Since the engagement ring is given prior to the marriage, it is technically the property of the receiving spouse. In order to protect this asset, you should have your ring appraised to know its financial value, then include it as one of your personal assets.

Your Pets

Another thing that many couples do not plan for beforehand is the placement and ownership of their pets post-divorce. Many people consider their pets to be part of the family, so they can easily become a point of contention in a divorce. You should list any pets in your prenuptial agreement and clearly state who will care for that pet, both physically and financially.

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DuPage County paternity lawyerEstablishing paternity is not something that many mothers think about, since most fathers are presumed. In a legal sense, paternity is the established legal relationship between a child and their father. Establishing paternity gives both the child and the father rights that they would not have without the legal classification. Many (including Illinois courts) agree that most children thrive when they have both parents playing an active role in their lives. Not only does establishing paternity authorize legal rights, but it also helps facilitate the parent-child relationship. Many other benefits come with establishing the paternity of a child, which is why you should consider completing the legal process if your child’s paternity has not been legally recognized.

Presumed Paternity

In the state of Illinois, paternity is presumed if the mother and father were married at the time the child was born or if they were married within a 300-day time period before the child was born. If neither of those situations applies, either the mother or father must take action to legally establish the paternity of the child. This can be done by filling out a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity form while at the hospital or by filing it with the Department of Healthcare and Family Services. Paternity can also be established through the use of genetic testing and an administrative or court order.

Benefits of Establishing Paternity

There are many reasons why a mother or father would want the court to recognize their child’s biological father. In most cases, the parent seeking to establish paternity of their child does so because they want to initiate the legal relationship and the benefits that go along with it. Benefits of establishing paternity include:

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