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Oakbrook Terrace Family Law Blog

Understanding how custody of children is shared in Illinois

Concerns about child custody, visitation and a parenting plan can be the most significant concerns couples face during a divorce. Child custody disputes are not a good thing for children or their parents, which is why the family law process can help parents resolve concerns over how they will co-parent and share custody.

It is important to keep in mind that whenever child custody is at issue, what is in the "best interests of the child" is the guiding factor courts will consider and that parents should consider as well. The family law court will seek to reach a child custody outcome that is in the best interests of the child. Factors the court may consider when making a child custody determination include: the wishes of the parents and the child; the relationship of the child and their parents and siblings; the child's adjustment to home, school and community; the mental and physical health of the parties; the ability of each of the parents to foster a close relationship with the child's other parent; and any evidence of abuse.

What are the different types of adoption?

Adoption can be a big step for many families. It is essential for families considering adoption to understand the adoption process and the different adoption options that may be available to them.

It can be challenging to understand all the different types of adoption, so it is important for potential adoptive parents to have all of their adoption questions answered. The first type of adoption is an agency adoption, which can be done through a public or private agency. Public adoptions may involve children who are in the custody of the state and private adoptions may take place through charitable organizations. Another type of adoption is independent adoption, in which the adoption is worked out between prospective adoptive parents and the birth parents.

A look at the many advantages of collaborative divorce

Although collaborative divorce may be a process that is new to many people, it has many upsides for divorcing couples to consider. Compared with traditional divorce litigation, which can also help guide divorcing couples through the divorce process, collaborative divorce offers several benefits divorcing couples should be aware of.

There have been many changes to divorce laws of late, including that divorce laws are no longer fault-based; child custody now focuses on parenting rights and responsibilities; and alimony, or spousal support, has also undergone some changes as well, related to the amount and duration or spousal support. Collaborative divorce is a process that allows divorcing couples to have more control over their divorce process, rather than having the family law court decide for the couple.

Divorce after 50 continues to grow in popularity

Have you heard of the term “gray divorce?” It refers to couples over the age of 50 filing for divorce. At one time this may have been a rare occurrence, but it is happening with greater consistency now than ever before. Statistics show that people over 50 are getting divorced at twice the rate people in that same age range were getting divorced 20 years ago.

Getting a divorce in your later years can understandably be difficult. It is not only a change in the way of life you may have grown accustomed to for many years, but you undoubtedly have accumulated a lot of property and money. Because of these unique factors, there are some special situations you should be aware of if you are over 50 and considering divorce.

Understanding how property is divided during divorce

Property division is usually of significant, and understandable, concern during a divorce. It is helpful for divorcing couples to understand how their property will be divided and to be familiar with that process.

The division of assets in Illinois is governed by equitable property division rules. That means that the family law court will seek to divide the couple's property as fairly as possible and unique to each situation. Each piece of property will be divided according to the couple's unique circumstances, which is why it is always useful for divorcing spouses seeking certain pieces of property in their divorce to understand how property division will be conducted.

Basics of alimony in divorce proceedings

Alimony, sometimes referred to as "spousal support," is an important concern during many divorces. As a result, it is an important aspect of the divorce process to understand.

Alimony is a payment that is made by one former spouse to the other in some circumstances. Because this can be a concern for former spouses, it is important to understand how alimony is determined and in what circumstances it may be awarded. Alimony is intended to help a lower-wage earning or non-wage earning spouse who might be disproportionately impacted by the divorce. The former spouse may be lower-wage earning or non-wage earning because they remained in the home to care for the household or children, or contributed to the development of the other spouse's career or education.

Step-by-step understanding of collaborative divorce

The divorce process can be intense, stressful and overwhelmingly emotionally. Fortunately, there are more options available today to help guide divorcing couples through the divorce process.

As is true when facing any legal challenge, it helps to know what to expect. Understanding how collaborative divorce works is no different. There are so many issues to work out during the divorce it can seem like a daunting and confusing process. Add to that long periods of time spent working out resolutions to divorce-related concerns and the costs that go along with it can add to the concerns divorcing couples may already have.

How are parenting rights and responsibilities allocated?

There are several different options for child custody, which will determine how the parenting rights and responsibilities for the child are allocated. If you have questions about the different types of child custody, you may not be alone.

There are two categories of child custody: physical custody and legal custody. As a general rule, child custody determines the allocation of parenting rights and responsibilities for the child. Physical custody refers to who the child lives with. The child may live with both parents, going back and forth, if the parents share joint physical custody of the child. If one parent has sole physical custody of the child, then the other parent will likely have visitation rights.

Adoption basics in Illinois

Adoption is an important way for many couples to start a family or grow their family. Because of how important the adoption process can be for Illinois families, it is important to be familiar with Illinois state laws surrounding adoption.

According to adoption laws in Illinois, any child, adult that resides in an adoptive home for two years or relative may be adopted. There is also a residency requirement for potential adoptive parents to adopt which may be waived by the court. There are different methods of adopting which can include the agency adoption process or the independent adoption process. International adoption options may also be available.

What needs to be considered for an autistic child’s custody?

It can be difficult for any child to watch their parents go through a divorce in Illinois. They have to adjust to not seeing their parents in the same house and potentially new environments depending on where their mom and dads move to after the separation. If the child has autism, then this process can become even harder.

Determining custody options for an autistic child means you have to take in additional factors in order to make the transition as smooth as possible for them. While there are familiar elements, it is not completely the same as figuring out custody for a non-autistic kid.

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