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Belleville and Edwardsville Divorce Law Blog

Consequences of nonpayment of child support

Noncustodial parents in Illinois are often ordered by the state court to pay child support. However, sometimes that parent will fail to pay said support to the other parent, which can result in several different consequences.

Time in jail is an option if the amount of the support is significant or the parent simply refuses to pay. If the amount isn't particularly high or there are circumstances preventing the support from getting paid when ordered, such as the paying parent's loss of a job, community service may be handed down as a penalty instead.

Helping abuse victims during disaster response

Illinois residents or others who go through a natural disaster may experience emotional trauma. They may also experience physical injury or stress that comes from not having access to food, water or basic services. These factors may increase the likelihood of domestic violence in the aftermath of a storm like Hurricane Harvey. Therefore, those who study the issue say that domestic violence services should be part of an overall disaster recovery plan.

Effective emergency management takes place in four different stages. During the response stage, emergency personnel should offer basic comfort and support to women and children who have experienced domestic abuse. This may take the form of directing them to shelters or providing them with other resources to get past the abuse. The second stage of emergency management is recovery, and emergency management personnel may help abuse victims by pointing them to long-term social support resources.

Military divorce rates differ for men and women

Families represent a critical support system for military personnel in Illinois, but not all marriages withstand the extra pressures of serving the country. The Pentagon tracks divorce rates among all service members and separates figures for men and women. In 2016, divorces among men in the military remained stable at 2.6 percent. Divorces among servicewomen, however, rose in 2016 to 6.6 percent from 6.2 percent in 2015.

The Defense Manpower Data Center collects the data about military divorces. The rate is calculated every fiscal year by comparing the number of married personnel to the number of reported divorces. A researcher with RAND Corp. said that 2016 proved to be a bad year for marriages among female personnel. Every branch of service saw an increase in divorces for women. In general, among enlisted troops, women have always had higher divorces rates than the men. In 2016, 2.8 percent of enlisted men got a divorce whereas 8 percent of enlisted women saw their marriages end.

Ex-wife of Paul Anka loses custody rights

Illinois music fans may be interested in learning that the legendary singer Paul Anka has been awarded sole legal and physical custody of his 11-year-old son. His ex-wife, a 46-year-old Swedish model, has filed an appeal.

According to news sources, the family court judge in California awarded Anka legal and physical custody as well as the discretion of whether or not to allow his ex-wife visitation time after attempts at reunification therapy reportedly failed. His ex-wife, Anna Anka, alleges that he has engaged in a campaign of parental alienation against her.

Research supports shared custody arrangements

61314081_S.jpgWhen Illinois parents of young children get a divorce, some might assume there will be an arrangement in which the mother gets custody of the children and the father has some visitation time. While mothers get custody in around 80 percent of cases in the United States, this is slowly changing. Shared parenting, already the norm in countries such as Sweden, is an arrangement in which the child spends roughly equal time with each parent. Missouri and Kentucky are among the states that have passed legislation to encourage shared parenting, and other states may be following suit.

The reason for this shift is a growing body of research indicating that children benefit from shared parenting even in situations in which the child is very young. There are benefits for parents as well. When mothers are not responsible for child care full time, they have more opportunity to reenter the work force and become financially independent. On the other hand, fathers are able to move beyond the role of simply being an occasional parent who pays support and can develop a stronger relationship with the children.

How to handle sharing a child with a toxic parent

44124375_S.jpgThere are many reasons why an Illinois parent might consider a former spouse to be toxic. Previous instances of abuse or neglecting the children may make it easy to label someone toxic. However, this label may also be applied by someone who is upset or scared about the prospect of getting a divorce. In the event that a former spouse or partner truly was toxic, there are specific steps to take to make co-parenting easier.

First, it is important for a parent to remember that the needs of the child are more important than the feelings of the adults. This may make it easier to overlook the other parent's behavior and work toward helping the child. It may also be a good idea to take stock of what may trigger an unwanted response from an ex and avoid these behaviors as much as possible.

Military divorce issues

44838961_S.jpgDivorce is often an emotional time for Illinois couples. Whether a case is legally challenging depends on a number of factors, including whether one or both spouses are serving in the military. While military divorces can be straightforward, it is important that all parties understand the laws and rules involved.

A service member, or his or her spouse, can file for divorce in a state where one of the spouses holds legal residence. it should be noted, however, that if the spouses have legal residence in different states, federal law gives the courts in the state where the service member resides the power to divide his or her military pension in a divorce.

Military divorce in Illinois

42671839_S.jpgMilitary service members in Illinois who are wishing to divorce might need to be aware of how the process differs from those that solely proceed within the civilian arena. There are certain federal laws governing divorces, support issues, division of pensions and other relevant matters that are important.

It will first be important to determine where to file the divorce. Divorce petitions may be filed in the states in which the military service members reside or in which the spouses reside. No matter where the divorce petition may be filed, the state in which the service member legally resides will have jurisdiction to divide the military pension.

DNA testing as a proof in paternity.

23179098_S.jpgIllinois family law attorneys are often asked whether DNA testing is necessary for a child support order. The answer often depends on whether the man from who child support is sought is challenging paternity.

Because of its accuracy and its non-intrusive testing method, testing has become popular in paternity cases. But it is not always necessary. For example, if an alleged father voluntarily acknowledges paternity pursuant to state law, testing is not required.

Advocates urge greater privacy for abuse survivors

30141534_S.jpgIllinois victims of domestic violence and abuse could be at risk due to the public availability of information about their locations. Advocates have noted that when people file for a no-contact order against a former abuser, their address and location are part of the public criminal record.

Because that record can be easily searched using a computer or smartphone, almost anyone can obtain the current address or location of the victim. Survivors of domestic violence are advocating to change the policy, noting that it can force victims into hiding in order to protect themselves from attack by their abusers. These types of orders are intended to help victims avoid contact with their abusers and make such contact a criminal offense. However, some perpetrators of domestic violence do not find the order itself or potential charges of violating it to be sufficient to dissuade them from further harassment or even physical attacks.

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Stange Law Firm, PC

Stange Law Firm, PC
115 Lincoln Place Ct.,
Se. 101
Belleville, Illinois 62221

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