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DuPage County Marital Agreement LawyerIf you are like most people, you have probably heard of prenuptial agreements but you may be less familiar with postnuptial agreements. Postnuptial agreements are very similar to prenuptial agreements with one major difference: A postnuptial agreement is agreed to after the couple is already married while a prenuptial agreement is signed before the wedding. This blog will discuss some of the common reasons that married couples negotiate postnuptial agreements and the benefits these agreements may provide.

Basics of a Postnuptial Agreement

Similar to prenuptial agreements, postnuptial agreements or "postnups" are legally binding agreements between two parties. The specific terms of a postnuptial agreement vary from case to case. However, many postnuptial agreements are used to define certain assets as non-marital assets, separate marital assets from non-marital assets, protect business interests, and confirm estate planning wishes.

Why Sign a Postnuptial Agreement?

The reasons that couples sign postnuptial agreements are as varied and unique as the individuals in those relationships. Some of the most common reasons married couples sign postnuptial agreements include:

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DuPage County Paternity LawyerIllinois adopted a new methodology for calculating child support in July 2017. Child support obligations are now calculated using the Income Shares formula. The amount a parent pays is based on both parents’ net incomes and the number of children involved. Although Illinois has used this calculation method for several years now, there is still a significant amount of confusion about establishing, modifying, and enforcing child support payments. This blog will present an overview of child support laws in Illinois and answer some of the most frequently asked questions about child support obligations.

How Do I Start Receiving Child Support?

Any parent can confirm that raising a child is expensive, and single parents often rely on financial support from the other parent to make ends meet. If a mother wants to receive child support from a child's father, she must first confirm that paternity is established. Paternity may be established through a Voluntary Acknowledgement of Paternity, an administrative order, or adjudication from the court.

The next step is to file a petition for child support with the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS). Once the petition is filed, HFS will send notice to the other parent and set up a hearing.

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IL divorce lawyerPeople usually envision their wedding day as being a moment full of hope and joy. And while for many couples it is exactly that, the days and months following the wedding may be equally full of surprises and disappointments. It can be hard to know someone without living with them, and even then, people can be surprisingly good at covering up important information when it suits their purposes. In times like these, it can be useful to know when it may be possible to declare your marriage invalid. Also known as getting a marriage annulled, a declaration of invalidity of marriage can end your relationship without going through the hassle of a divorce.

When Can Someone Get an Annulment?

Not everyone who gets married and quickly regrets it can get an annulment. Unlike a divorce, in which someone does not need to declare grounds at all, there are only four grounds for annulment in Illinois. These are:

  • Illegality - A marriage is illegal if one spouse was already married or if the spouses are too closely related. Siblings and first cousins cannot get married in Illinois unless the first cousins are over 50 years old or are infertile. Although most annulment grounds have time limits, a couple who discovers they are too closely related can annul their marriage at any time.
  • Age - If one spouse was under age 18 and did not have parental consent, the marriage may be declared invalid. Even with parental consent, someone cannot get married in Illinois before age 16. An annulment must take place before the age of legal adulthood or parental consent.
  • Consent - If a spouse was incapable of consenting because of mental illness or drug or alcohol use, a marriage can be annulled. This occasionally happens when a drunk couple decides to wed in a spur-of-the-moment ceremony, but it can also happen when a partner was having a psychological breakdown or was unmedicated and did not understand the full implications of getting married. An annulment for lack of capacity to consent must take place within 90 days.
  • Lack of consummation - If a couple gets married and discovers that one spouse is not capable of consummating the marriage through sexual intimacy, as long as the other spouse did not about the physical incapacity, the marriage can be annulled. An annulment for lack of physical capacity must take place within a year.

Call a Wheaton, IL Annulment Attorney

At Stock, Carlson & Asso. LLC, we know that sometimes the unexpected happens. That is why our DuPage County annulment attorneys are committed to helping you explore the available options to end your marriage as soon as possible. Schedule your comprehensive consultation by calling us today at 630-665-2500. We are available for consultations over the phone, in person, or by teleconference.

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IL family lawyerThe last thing most engaged couples are interested in talking about is how they will treat each other if their relationship ends. In the excitement of wedding planning and the blush of early love, the idea that a relationship could end in divorce seems impossible and deeply unromantic to discuss. Yet considering the statistics about divorce, couples would be wise to plan ahead and discuss the most important issues they will face. Doing so presents great opportunities for intimate conversations and may even prevent an ill-fated marriage from happening in the first place. Before you tie the knot, talk about these four things - and then approach a skilled prenuptial agreement attorney to create a great premarital contract that protects your priorities.

Children

Not everybody wants children, yet couples with mismatched priorities get married all the time. An individual’s preference for children is highly unlikely to change over time, and when a partner who wants children is coupled with a partner who does not, divorce is often the inevitable outcome. In addition to discussing simply wanting children, engaged couples should discuss how many children they want and their parenting philosophy when it comes to discipline, which parent may need to make career sacrifices, and how major expenses like college will be paid for.

Money

Couples frequently get divorced because of incompatible philosophies around spending and saving money. Set a budget, identify long-term financial goals, and discuss career ambitions well before you set a wedding date. Having a prenuptial agreement is a great way to address financial issues like property division and spousal support that could be very contentious in a divorce.

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IL parenting lawyerIn July of 2017, new laws went into effect changing the way Illinois courts handle child custody matters. Although the term child custody is still sometimes used informally, the law now describes child custody in terms of parenting time and parental responsibilities. Parenting time is the time that the child is in a parent’s physical custody.

If you are getting divorced or you are unmarried and your relationship is ending, it is important to understand your rights and responsibilities regarding parenting time.

How Is Parenting Time Divided Between the Parents?

Illinois parents are encouraged to work out an arrangement for sharing parenting time and formalize their decisions in their Parenting Plan. The court usually upholds Parenting Plans unless there is some aspect of the plan that is not in the child’s best interests. If the parents cannot reach an agreement, the court will determine an appropriate parenting time schedule for the parents based on factors including but not limited to:

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