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wheaton alimony lawyerAlthough alimony is less common in Illinois divorces than it used to be, it is still frequently ordered or negotiated between a divorcing couple. Technically known as “spousal maintenance,” alimony is intended to allow a spouse to recover from the financial consequences of separation from their partner, especially if the marriage lasted a long time and the spouse receiving alimony sacrificed all or part of their career potential to raise a family. If you are seeking an Illinois divorce and are wondering how long alimony lasts, read on and then contact a DuPage County family law attorney who can help. 

Types of Alimony in Illinois Divorces

There are four basic types of spousal maintenance allowed in an Illinois divorce, and the type of alimony will have a significant influence on how long alimony payments last. The four different types of alimony are: 

  • Temporary alimony - Interim or temporary alimony is ordered during divorce proceedings and may be used to pay for a spouse’s attorney fees and/or the cost of a spouse’s living needs until the divorce is finalized. Temporary alimony is intended to allow spouses to leave marriages they would otherwise be trapped in for lack of funds. 

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lombard asset division lawyerBecause many Illinois couples today get married well after they complete their education and begin building their net worth, many marriages begin when one or both spouses already own property. When one spouse outright owns or has a mortgage on a house and the other spouse moves in, the process of dividing the value of the house in a divorce can be complex and contentious. 

The spouse who owns the house will generally argue that, since he or she owned the home prior to the marriage, it is his or her individual property. The spouse who lived in the home, often for many years or even decades, will argue that without his or her financial assistance or help around the house, the home - and the spouse who owns it - would not have the property value or equity ownership it has today. For a brief overview of how individually owned property may be handled in a divorce, read this blog and then get your specific questions answered by an experienced Illinois asset division attorney.

Determining Whether a Home is Personal or Marital Property

When a spouse owns all or part of a home when a marriage begins, that preexisting equity generally remains the property of that spouse. This is especially true when a valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreement exists that protects the spouse’s equity in the home. 

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lombard estate planning lawyerAs a parent, you probably do not even want to think about what would happen if you were to pass away before they become adults. It can be a very upsetting idea. However, addressing the possibility head-on by making an estate plan that includes your children is the best way to set your mind at ease. People are waiting longer to have or adopt children, and it is fairly common for men to have children later in life. While all parents of minor children should have an estate plan aimed at providing for the children, it is particularly important for older parents. By creating a comprehensive estate plan, you can help ensure that if the worst were to happen, your children would be provided for. When protecting minor children in your estate plan is your main goal, it is important to work with an attorney so that you can be confident in your plan. 

Tips for Protecting Your Children in an Estate Plan

Since you cannot leave everything directly to your minor children, there will be some strategizing involved in your estate planning. Some tips and things to consider include: 

  • Combine wills and trusts - If you are wondering whether you should use a will or a trust when you have minor children, the correct answer is probably “both.” You will need a will to name your preferred successor guardian - the person you would want to raise your children in your absence. However, a trust may provide greater flexibility so that distributions can be made over time. You probably do not want your children to receive a lump sum when they come of age. 

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lombard divorce lawyerWhile much has been written about going through a divorce with a spouse who suffers from narcissism, depression, or even psychopathy, borderline personality disorder (or BPD) is so common and unpredictable that many people who get divorced do not even know that their spouse suffers from a specific mental illness - they just know they cannot take it anymore. 

Between one and five percent of the population has BPD and, for unknown reasons, most of them appear to be women. BPD often manifests with symptoms that are similar to those of other personality disorders - unpredictable mood changes, attachment difficulties, impulsiveness, and other difficulties with self-regulation. These behaviors can make it difficult to stay married, but can also make it very difficult to get divorced. If you know or suspect your spouse may have BPD, it is important to be prepared for the implications this may have on your Illinois divorce

Why Is Divorcing Someone with Borderline Personality Disorder So Hard? 

Abandonment is a common fear of those who suffer from BDP; ironically, the unpredictable behavior of someone with BPD often pushes away friends and family, leaving them left to face their fear of being alone. Additionally, the threat of abandonment makes people with BPD lash out in increasingly unpredictable and erratic ways, virtually all but guaranteeing that their partner will leave. A spouse with BPD going through a divorce may become self-destructive, self-harming, or even suicidal. 

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arlington heights divorce lawyerIllinois firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical caregivers are real-life superheroes who handle more than their fair share of challenges at work. Unfortunately, the unpredictable and demanding work schedule of these jobs also means that first responders often face additional challenges in their relationships. Emergency response employees have higher rates of divorce and, when they get divorced, they must deal with unique concerns as a result of their job. 

Why Are First Responders at Greater Risk of Divorce? 

First responders are at higher risk of matrimonial dissatisfaction because they work long hours, frequently face dangerous situations, observe traumatizing events, and often struggle with substance abuse and mental illness. In addition to the typical challenges a married couple deals with, these issues can be very difficult for the first responder and his or her spouse to manage. 

What are Unique Divorce Issues First Responders Face? 

Divorces involving first responders face several complications that must be anticipated and carefully planned around. These include, but are not limited to: 

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Illinois State Bar Association DuPage County Bar Association Northwest Suburban Bar Association American Inns of Court DuPage Association of Woman Lawyers National Association of Woman Business Owners Illinois Association Criminal Defense Lawyers DuPage County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
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