IL divorce lawyerGoing through a divorce is like navigating a stormy sea, filled with emotional turbulence and financial challenges. The unraveling of what was once a shared vision of the future introduces a wave of uncertainties, particularly in the realm of finances. It goes beyond the immediate concerns of possibly drastic changes in monthly income and for some people, military benefits for spouses. The journey becomes even more intricate due to the notable divorce rate among military couples, where an estimated 20,000 divorces occur annually. If you are a military spouse it is important that you understand the complexities of not only ending a marriage but also the intricacies of military-related benefits. You need a skilled divorce Illinois attorney to help you sort it all out.

How Are Military Pensions Divided?

When it comes to splitting military pensions during a divorce in Illinois, it is different from regular pensions. It depends on where you file for a military divorce. In Illinois, the state can only decide how the military pension gets divided if:

  • The military person lives there.
  • The military person is a legal resident there.
  • The military person agrees to let the state decide.

If these things do not happen, the state cannot say how the military pension should be divided. So, having a good divorce lawyer who knows about these things is super important.

What Is the 20-20-20 rule?

After the divorce, keeping military benefits in Illinois depends on the 20-20-20 rule which works something like this: if the military member served for at least 20 years, the couple was married for 20 years, and there is a 20-year overlap of military service and marriage, then a former spouse can still get military benefits after the divorce. If you are going through a divorce, especially if you are somehow connected to the military, it would be recommended that you talk to a divorce lawyer who knows their stuff. They can help protect your rights and figure out all the details about military benefits. The last thing you want is to lose some very important benefits that you are rightfully entitled to.

Schedule a Free Consultation with a Kane County, IL Divorce Lawyer

If you are in Illinois and need legal help with your divorce, especially if you or your spouse is in the military, reach out to an experienced St. Charles, IL divorce attorney. Call Shaw Sanders, P.C. at 630-584-5550 for a free consultation and see how they can help.

Is a Prenuptial Agreement a Good Idea?

Posted on in Divorce

IL family lawyerThe future is unpredictable, therefore, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements empower couples to plan for various scenarios. Ultimately, whether a prenup is a good idea depends on the specific needs and priorities of the individuals involved. It is a personal decision that should be made with careful consideration and, ideally, with open and honest communication between partners. You should consult with an Illinois family law attorney who can provide valuable insights into the legal implications of a prenup and help ensure that the agreement is fair and enforceable.

How Do Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements Differ?

Marital agreements help provide clarity and set terms for financial matters in the event of a divorce, but the timing and circumstances surrounding their creation vary in the following ways:

  • Prenuptial agreement – Typically initiated when a couple is planning to get married and wants to establish the terms of their financial arrangement in case of divorce.
  • Postnuptial agreement – Created after marriage, often prompted by a change in circumstances, a desire to formalize financial arrangements, or simply a realization that certain matters need clarification.

Why Are These Marital Agreements Growing in Popularity?

In the past, prenuptial agreements were primarily associated with the wealthy elite, but this perception has undergone a significant shift in recent years. Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements have become increasingly popular among couples from diverse backgrounds, serving as crucial legal documents to determine the fate of assets in the event of divorce or death. Couples from all walks of life now opt for prenuptial or postnuptial agreements for various reasons, including:

  • Wealth disparity – When one spouse has significantly more wealth than the other, a prenuptial agreement can prevent financial motives from influencing the marriage.
  • Blended families –In cases where one spouse has children from a previous marriage, a prenuptial agreement safeguards the inheritance of those children.
  • Business ownership – If one spouse owns a business or a share of a business, a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement ensures the business remains intact and is not subject to division in the event of divorce or death.
  • Debt considerations – If one spouse enters the marriage with substantial debt, a prenuptial agreement can absolve the other spouse of responsibility for that debt in case of divorce.
  • Asset or Debt Acquisition – Prenuptial or postnuptial agreements can exclude specific items from the property division process during a divorce, particularly assets or debts acquired during the marriage.

 Schedule a Free Consultation with a Kane County, IL Family Law Lawyer

 If you and your significant other are considering the protection offered by a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, reach out to Shaw Sanders, P.C.. A skilled St. Charles, IL family law attorney will assist you in drafting and negotiating the necessary legal documents to move forward with your plans. Call 630-584-5550 for a free consultation.

IL divorce lawyerDivorce is a life-altering decision, and in Illinois, it is a process with substantial financial consequences. However, an aspect that often gets overlooked amidst the emotional turmoil is the significant tax implications that accompany the dissolution of a marriage. Do not wait until tax season to discover that you are facing unexpected tax bills or missed opportunities for savings. You need an Illinois tax implications divorce attorney to help you minimize your tax liability and maximize your tax advantages.

What Tax Factors Should I Consider During a Divorce?

You may think that once the divorce papers are signed, the ordeal is finally over. However, taxes are looming, and your emotional state is often not considered when it comes to paying the IRS. Under Illinois law, when assets are divided, decisions about spousal maintenance, child support, and property settlements can have a massive impact on your tax liability. Ignoring these factors during your divorce could lead to unpleasant surprises when you file your next tax return.

What if I Kept the House after the Divorce?

Another pressing matter is the family home. If it is decided that one spouse will keep the house, they should be aware of the capital gains tax implications. There is a tax exemption for home sales, but it is crucial to understand the requirements and deadlines to avoid unexpected tax bills down the road.

Are There Tax Advantages if I Get Spousal Maintenance?

Spousal maintenance in Illinois is often a significant part of divorce negotiations. In Illinois, the spouse who pays spousal support cannot deduct those costs on federal or state tax forms. The person who receives spousal maintenance does not have to declare spousal maintenance as taxable income.

 Who Benefits from the Child Tax Credit?


IL divorce lawyerSame-sex marriages are allowed in Illinois, but there are still many couples who opt for civil unions. In Illinois, civil unions provide couples with the same legal rights and responsibilities as marriage. When it comes to a civil union dissolution, the same issues need to be addressed as in a divorce. If you have been cohabitating and are planning to call it quits, it is best to work with an experienced Illinois civil union dissolution attorney to protect your rights.

How is Property Divided if We Were Just Living Together?  

Same-sex marriages have been legal since 2015 in the United States. But the reality is that many same-sex couples were already living together in Illinois. A civil union dissolution can complicate how their property is divided if the couple is considering parting ways. Illinois law states that assets acquired during the marriage are considered marital property, while assets acquired before the marriage are non-marital property, with some exceptions. If a couple lived together but did not marry, the money and possessions they obtained during that time may be seen as non-marital property.

How Can Same-Sex Couples Deal with Child Custody Issues?

Child custody can also be a complex issue for same-sex couples. For instance, if one spouse has a child with a previous partner, their current spouse may not automatically have any legal rights to parenting time or parental responsibilities. This can be tough for both the step-parent and the child involved. The good news is that Illinois law allows step-parents to request visitation with the child in specific circumstances. In these situations, it is crucial to have an experienced attorney who can strongly represent your rights in and out of family court.

What Happens to Our Children if We End Our Civil Union?

In Illinois, the courts act in the best interest of the children when determining child custody.

Sorting out child-related matters is often the trickiest and sometimes most conflict-ridden part of ending a civil union. If both partners are legal parents to the children, they need to create a parenting plan for the court. This plan outlines how they will divide parental responsibilities and parenting time. If both partners agree, they can submit a joint parenting plan.


How Can I Request a Child Support Increase?

Posted on in Divorce

St. Charles child support lawyerRising costs in Illinois after COVID-19 have strained many people, making it tough to manage finances. Amid labor shortages, some employers boosted pay to keep employees. If you suspect your ex received a substantial raise, you can petition the court to reassess child support payments. If you have custody of your children and need increased child support to cover added expenses, consult an Illinois attorney for guidance on modifying your support order.

What Is the Process to Change a Child Support Order?

Child support is typically paid to the parent who is awarded the most parenting time and with whom the child lives. The non-residential parent is the one who pays child support. Under Illinois law, if you want to change the amount of money you pay or receive for child support, there is a legal process you must follow. You need to prove to the court that there has been a significant change in your circumstances that justifies adjusting the child support payments. This legal adjustment is often called a modification.

If you know that your ex-spouse got a higher-paying job while you are facing increased expenses, you can ask the court to reconsider your child support payments. To succeed in modifying child support, you must demonstrate substantial changes, such as a significant income increase or decrease, a change in custody arrangements, or other substantial shifts in your financial situation. The court will carefully evaluate these changes before deciding whether a modification is warranted.

How is a Child Support Amount Decided?

The court determines how much money is needed to care for a child by looking at both parents' incomes together. Then, they split this amount between the parents, considering how much money each parent gets after taxes and other deductions. They also consider how much time each parent spends with the child and their responsibilities to the child.

Usually, the law has clear rules to decide how much child support should be paid each month. But sometimes, there can be arguments about what counts as a parent's net income and whether extra money should be given for things like the child's health, education, and activities outside of school.


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