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Belleville and Edwardsville Divorce Law Blog

House passes controversial military child custody bill

The House recently passed a bill that could end up affecting child custody for military families in Illinois and throughout the country. However, while the House did pass the bill on a 390-to-2 vote last week, it's believed that the Senate will almost most certainly not approve.

The bill was introduced by one representative with the purpose of making sure military members are not put at a disadvantage when it comes to child custody due to their deployments. However, contenders of this bill -- like Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, the National Military Family Association and the American Bar Association -- claim that the negatives outweigh the positives.

Celebrity divorces can teach Illinois residents lessons

It seems that every time we turn on the TV or radio, or happen to glance at a celebrity gossip magazine while checking out at the grocery store, yet another celebrity is getting a divorce. And while it is true that many of these scandals are filled with outlandish accusations, and at times seem to drag on forever, the truth is that beneath the surface there are lessons that Illinois residents can learn.

For example, take the very public and nasty divorce between Kim Basinger and Alec Baldwin. At the time, it was reported that Basinger was trying to keep Baldwin out of their daughter's life. This is a situation that any Illinois father could end up in.

Property and asset division complicated among baby boomers

Recently we posted on the fact that in divorce, spouses typically want to make sure their retirement accounts are protected. However, now with more and more baby boomers getting divorced, understanding not only retirement accounts, but also how all property could end up being divided in a divorce is essential.

According to research, in the United States roughly half of all marriages end in divorce. However, the demographic of who is filing is changing. In 1990 baby boomers only made up one out of every 10 divorces. In 2009 this same age group made up four out of every 10 divorces.

Put thought into child support, divorce agreements

In Missouri, how much a parent will pay in child support -- typically the non-custodial parent -- is determined based on guidelines that take into account parents' gross incomes and different necessary costs for the child, like medical and daycare. However, the truth is that when coming up with child support and divorce agreements, it's important to think well into future costs to prevent contentious arguments from coming up later on down the road.

Divorced fathers and "second class citizenship"

It is not uncommon for fathers to feel like they have lost their place and have an uncertain status with their children after a divorce. Fathers may be left out of family events, friend circles and activities with neighbors they used to share their lives with. Fathers in Illinois and nationwide may have a difficult time adjusting to new personal and social arrangements after divorce.

Most divorcing couples try not to share the private details of their relationship with mutual friends. However, leaving the details a mystery can sometimes force family and friends into making assumptions about who did what or who wanted out of the marriage. Even when efforts are made to keep your friends and relatives out of the equation, some will still find it necessary to choose sides. This often leaves fathers as "outsiders" after divorce.

Tips for protecting your investments in the case of a divorce

When it comes to retirement savings accounts, like a 401(k), people often want the best advice when it comes to protecting those assets in the case of a divorce. And while the first piece of advice would be to plan ahead and have a prenuptial agreement before even walking down the aisle, for those without a prenuptial agreement, there are still other options that may be available.

For those who are not yet married, now would be the time to think about a prenuptial agreement. And while some worry that these types of agreements are setting a marriage up for divorce, the truth is that a prenuptial agreement is merely a way to make sure that both spouses have their assets protected.

Even after warrant, father continues to have custody of son

A 27-year-old father is surely happy right now as a judge ruled he can continue to have custody of his 9-year-old son. However, he must continue to follow the court-ordered child custody agreement that he has with the boy's mother.

Earlier this week, the father ended up pleading guilty to criminal restraint by a parent. This charge was in response to the boy's mother claiming she didn't physically see her son at all over a roughly seven month time period in 2011. As per the court agreement, she has visitation rights to see the boy every other week.

Military divorce a unique situation

Military life can be particularly demanding and can put a great deal of stress on a marriage. However, while there has been concern over the role that deployments can play on a marriage, a recent study found that when it comes to the possibility of divorce, military marriages are just as vulnerable as civilian marriages.

The study, which was published in the Journal of Family Issues, looked at records from the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System and compared the data to the Current Populations Survey, which provides the same statistics for civilians. From there it was found that even as the number of deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq increased between 2002 and 2005, the military divorce rate stayed the same.

Stange Law Firm Opens Office in St. Clair County, IL in Belleville

Stange Law Firm, a family law firm with offices in St. Louis (Brentwood), St. Charles, and Jefferson County (Arnold) Missouri, is now opening an office in the St. Louis Metro East, in St. Clair County, at 115 Lincoln Place Court, Suite 101, Belleville, Illinois, 62221. This new office office will better serve the firm's clients in the St. Louis Metro East in Illinois. The tentative opening is August 1, 2011.

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