Recent Blog Posts

Is Mediation During My Divorce Right for Me?

 Posted on September 05, 2023 in Divorce

St. Charles mediation lawyerIf you want to dodge the courtroom drama, mediation during a divorce could be a game-changer. Instead of fighting in court, a mediator will step in to help you and your soon-to-be ex settle your differences quickly. You will be able to address everything from child custody to property division. A mediation attorney in Illinois can make a complicated divorce process smoother and ensure your agreements meet legal requirements. 

What is Mediation?

Under the Uniform Mediation Act couples can talk with a neutral person who is not on anyone's side to work out their problems instead of going to court. In many cases, the court will ask a couple to go through mediation first.

The process of mediation is a helpful way to solve problems in many legal situations, but it is especially useful in family law cases like divorce. Here is why:

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What are the Consequences of Hiding Assets in a Divorce?

 Posted on August 25, 2023 in Divorce

Kane County divorce lawyerDivorce is often a complex and emotionally charged process, especially when financial matters come into play. The division of marital assets is a critical aspect of divorce proceedings. Illinois law mandates that both spouses provide complete and accurate financial disclosure. Unfortunately, some individuals may attempt to conceal or hide assets to gain a financial advantage during the divorce. However, the consequences of such actions can be severe and far-reaching. Suppose you suspect your spouse is trying to hide assets in your divorce. In that case, it's imperative to consult with your St. Charles high asset divorce attorney as soon as possible.

Legal Obligation of Full Financial Disclosure

In Illinois, spouses have a legal duty to provide complete and honest financial information during divorce proceedings. This disclosure is essential for ensuring an equitable distribution of marital property and spousal support arrangements. Both parties must provide a comprehensive list of all assets, liabilities, income, expenses, and financial documents. Attempting to hide assets or misrepresent financial information breaches this legal obligation and can have serious repercussions.

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How Can I Adopt My Stepchild in Illinois?

 Posted on August 20, 2023 in Family Law


A person does not need to be a blood relative of a child in order to love and care about him or her. If you married someone who already had a child, it is possible that you have spent a great deal of time getting to know the child and providing for his or her needs. You may even think of the child as if he or she was your own biological offspring. If this situation describes you, you may be wondering what it takes to adopt your stepchild. Stepparent adoptions can sometimes be complicated personally as well as legally. This is why it is a good idea to work with a skilled Illinois stepparent adoption lawyer who has experience handling stepparent adoption cases.

Stepparent Adoption Criteria

Stepparent adoption is a significantly different process than other types of adoption. In many cases, an investigation by the Department of Children and Family Services or background check is not required. In order to qualify for a stepparent adoption, the following criteria must be met:

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Legal Considerations for Life After Divorce in Illinois

 Posted on August 10, 2023 in Divorce

Life after divorce can be overwhelming, and seeking professional guidance is crucial to navigating the legal complexities successfully.Divorce can be an emotionally challenging and life-altering experience. As you navigate the process and move forward with life after divorce in Illinois, it's essential to be aware of the legal considerations that can significantly impact your future. From financial matters to child custody arrangements, understanding your rights and obligations is crucial. When you work closely with an experienced St. Charles divorce attorney, they can help you explore the essential legal considerations for life after divorce.

Property Division and Asset Management

In Illinois, the division of property during a divorce follows the principle of equitable distribution. This means that marital assets are divided fairly but not necessarily equally. Reviewing the final divorce decree is essential to ensure that all property settlements are accurately reflected. 

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How Does Mediation Work in Illinois?

 Posted on August 02, 2023 in Mediation

St. Charles Mediation AttorneyNo two divorces are the same. Each spouse and marriage are unique, with different issues to resolve. Some divorcing couples can work out agreements amicably, while many others are not able to speak to each other and rely on an experienced St. Charles mediation attorney to assist them in reaching their goals for their divorce and their future. At Shaw Sanders, P.C., we can help you no matter what type of divorce you are seeking and even if you choose to utilize mediation. 

Contested vs. Uncontested Divorces

In an uncontested divorce, the couple agrees on the terms of their parting, their children, their debts and assets, as well as alimony and child support. Because of their agreement, there is no need to have hearings, negotiations, or court procedures. Even though this type of divorce is usually straightforward, it’s still essential that you hire a St. Charles mediation attorney to represent your interests.

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3 Things to Know about High-Income Child Support in Illinois

 Posted on July 31, 2023 in Child Support

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-79.jpgHigh-income child support cases are situations where one or both parents earn a substantial income that exceeds the guidelines set in state laws. In these situations, the court agrees to deviate from standard regulations to accommodate a high income family's unique needs and lifestyle. This article explores different aspects of these complex cases and their outcomes. 


Calculating High-Income Child Support

Under usual circumstances, Illinois courts adopt a formulaic approach to determine child support payment amount.

The court uses an income-share model, where the final amount is based on how many nights a child stays at each parent’s house. This number is multiplied by the number of children one party has in this or another relationship.  The state uses these regulations to ensure every child of a divorce receives a quality life through financial support offered by the parents. 

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The Role of Social Media in Divorce Cases

 Posted on July 26, 2023 in Divorce

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-67_20230726-155333_1.jpgWhen going through a divorce, it is crucial to recognize the significant impact your social media activity can have on the outcome of your case. Opposing counsel will undoubtedly delve into your private life, including interactions on social media and online communications with friends and family. Any missteps in this realm can potentially give your soon-to-be-ex spouse an advantage, particularly in high asset divorce cases.


Impacting Your Credibility

In a contentious divorce, one party may attempt to portray the other as immoral or untrustworthy. Social media posts can be used as evidence to support such claims. For example, if you claim financial hardship to avoid spousal maintenance, but then post pictures of extravagant parties on luxury items and lavish spending, it can seriously undermine your credibility and weaken your position during negotiations.

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The Importance of Forensic Accounting in High Asset Divorce Cases

 Posted on July 18, 2023 in High Asset Divorce

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-40.jpgHigh net worth divorce cases come with high risks and secret agendas. Forensic accounting can be vital in providing an equitable resolution during your divorce. Accountants use their experience to share valuable insights during valuation, track complex transactions, and uncover hidden assets.  We explore the key advantages of working with forensic accounts in a high asset divorce below. 


Use It to Identify Discrepancies in Financial Records 

Navigating a high asset divorce can be tricky, especially if your soon-to-be-ex-spouse falsifies information to reduce spousal or child maintenance obligations. Forensic accountants can catch lies by tracing financial transactions and verifying records. 

This includes:

  • Reviewing financial documents and reconciling bank statements to ensure they are accurate. 

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Key Differences Between Contested Divorce and Uncontested Divorce in Illinois

 Posted on July 12, 2023 in Divorce

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-19.jpgThe difference between contested divorce and uncontested divorce in Illinois lies in their execution and how the soon-to-be-ex-spouses communicate during legal proceedings. Both scenarios require legal representation. A divorce lawyer will handle negotiations, paperwork, and other aspects of the dissolution of marriage to streamline the process. We highlight the distinguishing factors between each divorce type to help you make an informed choice during your separation. 


The Control Shifts in Contested vs. Uncontested Divorce  

A contested divorce typically goes to trial because the couple does not agree on how to distribute marital assets or manage child support after separation. 

Since the divorcing couple cannot reach a settlement, one or both parties request the court to intervene. The court uses the legal framework to determine an effective way to divide marital property and assets, parental responsibilities, and set conditions for child and spousal support. 

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Who Pays for a Child's College Expenses in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on June 27, 2023 in Child Support

IL family lawyerIn Illinois, the court can require divorcing parents to pay for their children's post-secondary education. Family lawyers can help you decide how much you need to pay and how to divide those responsibilities during a divorce. The following is a brief overview of the statute that covers this area of Illinois family law.

#1. There Is an Age Limit for College Provisions

Section 513 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (750 ILCS 5/513) has set strict terms and conditions for college expenses. The provisions include the cost of five college applications, a minimum of two college entrance exam fees, and payouts for educational books and resources.

This includes post-secondary education costs for trade school and vocational school. The court does take both parents' financial status and future resources while dividing the college expenses equitably. Do you have to pay for college until graduation? Not necessarily.

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