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DuPage County Divorce AttorneyAccording to the American Psychological Association, more than 90 percent of individuals from Western cultures marry by the age of 50. Sadly, in the United States, 40 to 50 percent of these marriages end in divorce. However, while the nationwide average is high, not every state has such a high divorce rate. Statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau found that Illinois has some of the lowest divorce numbers in the country, with there being 9.41 divorced individuals for every 1,000 married couples in the state. Other states, such as Hawaii, New York, Vermont, and New Jersey, have similarly low divorce rates.  What common factors do these states have that causes the divorce rate to be so low?

Why the Reduced Numbers?

It can be difficult to determine what the variables in a good marriage are. Studies of these states have found that there are commonalities they all share:

  • Reduced Student Debt: A common cause of divorce is financial stress. A couple’s financial state can sometimes make or break their marriage, depending on their situation. This is especially common for couples in which one person works while the other stays at home. Large amounts of student debt can be an immediate burden added to a marriage, particularly if the working individual is using their paycheck to pay off their spouse’s debt. Many of the “top five” low divorce states had lower average amounts of student debt owed.
  • An Age Range Change: Getting married young is not as common as it once was. Unlike their parents and their grandparents, millennials are choosing to get married at an older age. This has been attributed to higher education levels and increased opportunities, especially for women. Marriages that are officiated when the individuals are older have been proven to last longer. Many of the individuals in these five states wait until closer to age 30 to tie the knot.
  • Higher Income: Similar to the first reason, less financial burden equals less conflict about monetary constraints. The Census Bureau reports reflect a correlation between high divorce rates and large numbers of people who live below the poverty line. The opportunities that are available to people with higher incomes can reduce stress for couples, thus making them happier in their marriage.
  • Fewer People are Tying the Knot: Do not let the statistics fool you; fewer overall marriages means fewer divorces. In Illinois, less than 65 percent of people are married. This may also be attributed to higher education levels and greater independence for all genders, reducing the social requirement to get married. 

Contact a DuPage County Divorce Attorney for Assistance

Illinois divorce rates may be some of the lowest in the country, but many marriages within the state do still end in divorce. It is important to seek out an experienced attorney to help you with the legal issues that must be addressed during your divorce thus allowing you to focus on the life changes you are about to experience. If you are considering filing for divorce, contact a Lombard, IL divorce attorney at 630-426-0196.

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Posted on in Mediation

mediation, Illinois divorce, Lombard family lawyerA litigated divorce can be extremely stressful, time-consuming, and, in many cases, rather expensive. As an alternative, many couples are able to reach a reasonable divorce agreement through the process of mediation, meeting with a third party facilitator to work out their differences on the all of the pertinent issues. While it can be a very useful tool, there are certain situations in which mediation may not be appropriate. In these cases, litigation may provide the only option for an equitable divorce settlement.

Potentially Less Accountability

Mediation is, at its core, a negotiation process, which means that the parties often begin at extreme opposite ends of a particular issue and work their way toward compromise somewhere in the middle. Complex divorce cases—especially those involving one or both spouses with high net-worth—typically require complicated evaluations of business interests and real estate holdings. These evaluations may be artificially inflated in a mediated divorce case, with the implication that they are merely a starting point for the negotiation. This can be dangerous if one party lacks the appropriate knowledge to properly challenge the valuation or does not have the opportunity to cross-examine the expert who prepared it.

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text message, Lombard divorce lawyers"Merry Christmas"

These two words were the entire contents of the first-ever text message, sent on December 3, 1992, by a 22-year old software engineer. Since that time, text message communication has become a way of life, with upwards of six billion messages exchanged every day in the United States. Text messages are short, simple, and quickly accessible for nearly every American adult, which explains their explosion in popularity. However, the very same characteristics that make text messaging so convenient can also create problems for those involved in legal proceedings, especially proceedings related to divorce or children.

Too Available?

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financial infidelity, Illinois divorce attorneysHave you ever cheated on your spouse? Before you answer, keep in mind that cheating can mean much more than an episode of sexual indiscretion. In fact, there is another type of cheating that is far more prevalent in today’s marriages, and it has virtually nothing to do with adultery; it pertains, instead, to a couple’s finances. According to a recent survey, more than 40 percent of Americans have committed what is known as financial infidelity against their partner. With money already a commonly-cited contributor to the breakdown of marriages, financial infidelity, if not addressed and resolved, can quickly lead a couple down a path toward divorce.

What is Financial Infidelity?

Although it may take many forms, the basic idea of financial infidelity is relatively simple: one partner in a relationship with combined finances lies about or hides money and purchases. It could be an interest-bearing account set up in his name that she has no idea exists, or it could be a credit card that she has on the side. Whatever the case, if both partners are not fully disclosing financial concerns—within previously agreed-upon parameters—one or both may be committing financial infidelity.

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Posted on in Parenting

fighting, parents Arlington Heights family law attorneyAs a divorced parent, you understand how difficult it can be to deal with your ex-spouse at times. No matter how amicable your split may have been—and may even still be for the most part—you are going to have disagreements from time to time. It is simply a part of life. Perfectly rational adults can have different viewpoints on certain issues, especially when it comes to what may or may not be best for children. Along those lines, you have probably been told that it is always a bad idea to fight in front of the kids; but that may not necessarily be the best advice. In fact, fighting the right way can even offer your children some insight into responsible problem-solving.

Of course, nobody is suggesting that a knock-down, drag-out fight between parents is a good thing for a child to see. On the other hand, there is nothing wrong with letting your child witness an occasional—and rational—exchange of differing opinions between you and your ex-spouse. It is important, though, to keep a few guidelines in mind to be sure that your child is not adversely affected in the process:

Set Topical Boundaries

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amicable divorce, divorce law, Arlington Heights divorce attorneyA few weeks ago, a post on this blog talked about "divorce selfie" trend that seemed to exemplify the amicable nature of many modern divorces. For many couples, the decision to end their marriage, while difficult, does not end their ability to work together toward a common goal. An amicable, uncontested divorce can save a couple the hassle and expense of having to sort out their differences in court and greatly streamline the entire process. Regardless of how cooperative you and your spouse can be, however, it is still important to seek the assistance of a qualified divorce attorney for a number of reasons.

Divorce Is Often Complicated

Even though you and your spouse may agree on most of the concerns inherent to the divorce, spelling out an acceptable divorce agreement can be difficult. The division of property, for example, is just one area that can be incredibly complex, with valuations needed for homes, vehicles, retirement accounts and more. While you may not have any disagreements over who is getting what, an attorney can help you develop a legally sound arrangement that clearly designates each and every allocation.

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selfie, divorce, Illinois family law attorneyEarlier this summer, a snapshot quickly made the rounds on social media that raised a few eyebrows but created some very interesting discussions on the state of marriage and divorce in North America. It also has started a sort of copycat trend, with hundreds of similar images having been posted to Facebook and Instagram in the weeks since.

Photographic Commitment

The viral photo was of a Canadian couple who stopped for a smiling selfie—a self-shot photograph taken with a cellphone camera—in front of the sign on the Calgary, Alberta, municipal court building. Their happy faces and comfort together suggested that they just made a life commitment to one another. In fact, they had, but not the one you might think. The couple had just filed for divorce, but took the photo as a symbol that they had made the right decision and that they would continue to work closely together in raising their children.

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advice, divorce lawyer, Lombard family law attorneysWhen family, friends, or coworkers learn you are about to go through a divorce, it is natural for them to want to help. Sometimes, that help comes in positive forms—a shoulder to lean on, an offer to help out with the children, or even just space to cope with the emotional baggage that often accompanies a divorce. But advice, often given with the best of intentions, may not always be helpful for a divorcing couple. In fact, sometimes divorce advice can end up doing more harm than good.

Most Common Forms of "Bad" Divorce Advice

In most instances, bad divorce advice comes from those that truly do want to help. Unfortunately, they may not fully comprehend the emotional or legal repercussions of what they are suggesting. Thankfully, it is pretty easy to spot poor divorce advice because most will involve "shortcuts" of one sort or another. Examples may include tips like:

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children of divorce, life after divorce, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois family law attorneyAccording to a study conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, children whose parents are divorced may suffer from low math test scores. The study also revealed that divorce may hamper the development of interpersonal skills in children, as well as cause children to struggle with low self-esteem, sadness, loneliness and anxiety.

The results of the study indicate that children do not suffer with these issues before their parents’ divorce, despite what the home situation is. These problems tend to appear after the breakup has already occurred.

Author of the study, Hyun Sik Kim, studied data provided by the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study. The study tracked 3600 students from kindergarten through fifth grade, beginning in 2008.

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divorce settlement, social media, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois divorce attorney, divorceWhen you are filing for a divorce, it can be tempting to frequently explain your reasoning. However, it pays to be careful when discussing your marital troubles publicly. In a recent court decision, a woman was stripped of a large portion of her divorce settlement as a result of her negative comments regarding her ex-husband.

Janice Schacter certainly never expected that complaining about her soon-to-be ex-husband's abuse and financial expenditures on social media would result in a judge stripping her of a large portion of her divorce settlement. Schacter had been complaining that her now ex-husband was both abusive and had spent more than $200,000 on an engagement ring for his new fiancee while refusing to pay for hearing aids for his daughter. As a result of her outspoken comments, Ira Schacter was named as a contestant for the website abovethelaw.com's sarcastic "Lawyer of the Month" award, significantly damaging his business. Ira Schacter's lawyers argued in court that the daughter had in fact received the hearing aids, though there was some contention over which party would pay the bulk of the expense. According to Justice Laura Drager, the misleading reports had a significant impact on the value of Ira Schacter's partnership in the legal firm where he worked. As a result, she determined that Janice Schacter would only be awarded 17 percent of the $5 million partnership value, or around $855,000. According to Drager, though Janice Schacter was within her rights to speak publicly about the domestic violence she may have experienced, "the incessant postings and discussions about the husband went beyond any reasonable discussion of this very serious issue." Filing for divorce can be a very distressing experience, and it can be tempting to speak openly about the issues that have lead to your decision to file. Having an experienced lawyer on your side can help prevent any situation that may diminish any alimony or other property that you may be entitled to in your divorce settlement. If you are filing for divorce in Illinois, contact A. Traub & Associates, Attorneys at Law today for a consultation.

children of divorce, Lombard, Illinois, divorce attorney, family lawyer in IllinoisYou are thinking of meeting with a divorce attorney and wonder what impact your decision will have on your children. You understand the tension and uneasiness blanketing the house may soon dissipate and you and the kids can settle into a more harmonic routine. You worry a bit about how the kids will handle the absence of their other parent, but take some comfort in their resiliently. You are not expecting any changes in their behavior as all things fall into place.

Researchers, Daniel S. Shaw and Erin M. Ingoldsby of the University of Pittsburgh disagree. These colleagues have researched the conceptualizations of the impact of divorce on children and how they tend to adjust to the overall situation. By highlighting sections of their Children of Divorce you may gain a better understanding of the behaviors on the horizon as your children adjust to the new family dynamics. Externalization Problems

This is the most consistent finding when it comes to how a child may process the situation and brings to the surface personal difficulties with delinquency, aggression and disobedience.

Internalization Problems

Although this is less compelling than the evidence of externalization issues, research suggests difficulties are more common in girls than their male counterparts. Female children of divorce are more likely to experience depression, anxiety and personal feelings of distress.

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post nuptial agreement, post marital agreement, marriage, Illinois divorceSometimes, the communication in a relationship can break down. Financial concerns are often the source behind this communication breakdown. Unfortunately, this tends to be a self-reinforcing problem. The more concerned each person is, the more uncomfortable the subject becomes, and the less a couple communicates. Fortunately, there is a way to open the lines of communication and clear the air: a post-marital agreement.

According to a recent article in the Huffington Post, a post marital agreement has many advantages. Not only can it help open the lines of communication when it comes to your finances; it also helps to let each person know what their responsibilities and obligations are as far as the couple’s finances go.

Marriage is an economic partnership as much as it is an emotional one. Knowing what each person expects from the other as far as finances go can ease much of the tension that can occur in the relationship.

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Posted on in Divorce

Sometimes people use acronyms to shorten a phrase or term. The following terms are commonly used in matters of divorce, especially when there are children involved. When you do not understand certain terms, ask your attorney. Knowledgeable divorce attorneys  take time to explain each aspect of the process and properly prepare you for the road ahead.

Illinois divorceWhat is a TRO?

A temporary restraining order (TRO) temporarily halts a specific type of activity. In a divorce, it is sometimes used to keep a party from selling off, donating or transferring ownership of marital property. Such orders are requested to handle emergent situations such as:

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ChristineDivorce is rampant in our society and taking the way out can be a breath of fresh air.

But what about the breath of 80 year old love?

November 25, 1932, marked the first "I do" by John and Ann Betar of Fairfield, Connecticut. Eighty years later they not only have happiness together but five children, 14 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren to add to the bliss.

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