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Belleville and Edwardsville Divorce Law Blog

Older-couple divorce: A bit of planning goes a long way

9790074_S.jpgThe phenomenon of baby-boomer divorce has been often noted and expounded upon in recent years by family law commentators, with this salient fact often being pointed out: Whereas the divorce rate across the country seems to generally be in decline these days, it has spiked sharply for the boomer crowd.

In fact, boomer couples in Illinois and across the country -- that is, married couples 50 and over -- reportedly account for about one of every four divorce partings in the country currently. If boomer divorce was deemed a disease, says one professor and family commentator, "it would be an epidemic."

Why such a high split rate for older couples?

The intersection of tax and divorce: Be sure to think about it

12150231_S.jpgTaxes always seem to rear their head, and they're certainly not shy about making an appearance during the divorce process, when negotiating parties unquestionably have a lot of other things on their minds.

Unsurprisingly, tax implications can come strongly to the fore in the area of property division, and paying close attention to such matters can quite literally pay off for a divorcing spouse -- or, conversely, cost that person plenty in the event that he or she is not paying adequate attention to what the IRS is focused upon.

Hamm divorce case: seminal property division outcome on horizon?

13732625_S.jpgThe Hamms are back in the news, and in a typically front-and-center fashion.

We first visited the couple in our March 31, 2014, blog post, noting therein the "outsized" nature of virtually every aspect of their marriage and divorce.

As might be reasonably expected in divorce negotiations involving a high-profile tycoon who struck it rich -- very rich -- and his wife/business partner, property division considerations loom large in the dissolution proceeding that is currently playing out in an Oklahoma courtroom.

Protecting children: at the heart of many family law outcomes

9967830_S.jpgThere is an overriding and oft-used mantra that permeates many family law concerns in Illinois and Missouri, as well as throughout the rest of the country, and it is this: "the best interests of the child."

That standard is what centrally guides judges in their divorce-related and other family concerns where children are involved.

The guideline is at once understandable and appreciated, given the singular innocence and vulnerabilities of children in any process that is bringing about material change in their lives.

Divorce: short-term interests and the bigger picture

Who wins in divorce?

Some couples unquestionably view the divorce process as a theater of war pursuant to which there must be a clear winner and an obvious loser. Those marriage decouplings are comparatively likely to be defined by hard-ball litigation that proceeds down the traditional adversarial path.

That means a judge and, often, successive battles over one issue after the other. In the most extreme cases, compromise is not just unlikely -- it's flatly off the table.

Illinois family law: Is that marital or nonmarital property?

22764244_S.jpgIs it yours? Is it your spouse's? Alternatively, does it belong to both of you? And, if so, in undivided fashion or to some differentiated degree?

When it comes to property division in an Illinois divorce, those are all centrally relevant questions that must be answered before any distribution of assets can be realized.

You might want to get an experienced divorce attorney with strong knowledge concerning asset division matters on board early to help sort out those questions, because doing so has direct implications for how a resulting property division will unfold.

Keep future financial security in mind when going through divorce

14309971_S.jpgDivorce is a difficult process. From navigating through the emotional turmoil of an ending relationship to attempting to split finances, divorce can be overwhelming. Whether a divorce is contentious or not, it can be easy for couples to fall into the "money grab" trap. Although coming out of the divorce with the larger chunk of money in the present may feel like a win, it could lead to financial insecurity in the future.

The issue was recently addressed in an article by The Wall Street Journal. In the piece, the author notes that one of the most common financial pitfalls in a divorce can be the family home. It is tempting to fight to keep this piece of property, particularly if children are present. The desire to offer children some sense of stability can be overwhelming and may overshadow the negative financial impact this decision could have. Before fighting for the home, carefully consider the implications. Can you afford monthly mortgage payments on one income? Can you afford the taxes along with maintenance and upkeep? What about unforeseeable expenses, like a broken furnace or leaky roof?

Spotlight on military divorce: deployment and custody issues

Thumbnail image for 24447019_S.jpgThere are many military servicemembers in Illinois and Missouri, and they are obviously just as interested as are other military members serving throughout the country and abroad with family law matters that concern them.

Military divorce is one of those matters, with divorce for servicemembers often being more subjected to strains than is the case for civilian couples. In the military, one spouse is often working at a location far removed from his or her family. Aside from the obvious stresses that can add to a marriage, it can also render things like child custody and child support flatly problematic following a marital dissolution.

A recent high-profile military case involving a Navy sailor and his daughter amply bears that out.

In their best interests: checking on kids following divorce

12940457_S.jpgIf you are a just-divorced spouse, an author of a recent family law article in a national publication notes that it is typical for you to be "drifting along finding your footing and discovering new routines."

Imagine how true that is for your kids, regardless of whether they are young children or teenagers.

Adjustments in life following divorce are often many and material, and it is certainly understandable that the process accompanying them is sometimes less than perfectly smooth. In fact, it would probably be a little strange if that wasn't the case.

Premarital agreements and property division

12172964_S.jpgJust as in other states, in Illinois and Missouri, too, the ardor-dampening feelings that many people have long associated with premarital agreements are dissipating.

For a long time, such agreements -- namely, prenuptial agreements executed prior to marriage and postnuptial contracts entered into following marriage -- were viewed with suspicion by many romantic partners and even as marriage breakers.

That image is steadily changing, with more American couples realizing the considerable value that such agreements command for their ability to help identify marriage priorities and plan for the future.

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