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Belleville and Edwardsville Divorce Law Blog

Differences between primary and legal custody in Illinois

When it comes to divorce decisions, child custody arrangements are always the most contentious. During this time it can also get particularly confusing as parents try to navigate the world of custody. Parents in Illinois may find themselves wondering, what is the difference between primary and legal custody? Who will be in charge of things like religious upbringing, medical decisions and extracurricular decisions?

Of course, there is no one-size approach, but there is a general breakdown of custody terms used in Illinois:

Unpaid child support lands one father behind bars

For many parents -- whether they are going through a divorce or just splitting up -- determining child support will be part of that process. This means each parent will need to provide proof of their earnings. A judge will then look at not just income, but also the needs of the child.

Once the amount the noncustodial parent has to pay is determined, it is very important that parents stay up-to-date on their payments. If not, he or she could end up having a warrant issued for their arrest. This could lead to jail time.

Should U.S. judges consider foreign laws in divorce?

For many people, religion plays a major role in their lives and is represented at major life occasions. Naturally, many people include their religious beliefs into their wedding. However, if the marriage ends up not working out as planned, many of those same people also want their religious beliefs to be honored in their divorce.

The idea of whether U.S. judges should consider Islamic law and other foreign laws is a hot-button issue. Right now there are already six states where judges are only allowed to rely on U.S. laws and are prohibited by law of considering foreign laws. About 20 others states in the U.S. are also trying -- or have tried in the past -- to pass similar laws to prohibit foreign laws.

Talk with an attorney before falling behind on child support

Illinois parents going through a divorce can expect that statutory guidelines will be used to help determine how much one parent should be paying and how much the other parent should be receiving in child support. These child support guidelines are heavily dependent on how much the non-custodial parent earns. However, other factors such as medical expenses and child care costs are also factored in to the total amount that should be paid.

For the non-custodial parent, failing to make these payments can actually result in criminal consequences, which is why it's very important to understand the entire process of child support beforehand.

Men frequently the victims of domestic violence too

In light of October being National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, it's important to bring up the fact that men are often the victims of domestic violence.

In general, violence against anyone -- man or woman -- is never OK. However, men often find themselves in a tough situation as their claims of abuse are met with blank stares, while others simply think the claims are a mere attempt to win a child custody battles. The stigma attached to men being abused is also not helped by the fact that many men do not report the abuse and agencies lack actual statistics.

Considerations for divorcing Illinois parents in Edwardsville and Belleville

When parents go through a divorce, experts say the goal is to maintain the children's lifestyle. However, due to a divorce usually meaning each parent having to pay for their own household, many people are unable to keep everything exactly how it was for their children. This is why judges and lawyers will look at what the minimum amount one parent can accept is and what is logistically possible for the other parent to pay.

Every state, including Illinois, has specific guidelines that are followed for when it comes to determining child support. A judge will use those guidelines and take into account any deviations, like health care costs, housing and extra educational training due to any learning disabilities.

Supervised visitation sometimes an option for Illinois parents

Every parent has the right to a relationship with their child. Even in cases where the parents are going through a nasty divorce full of domestic abuse allegations, children should still be able to spend time with both of their parents.

In situations where accusations involving abuse play a role, a judge may only allow supervised visitation with the children. This is done in order to ensure the child's safety, while also still allowing the child and parent to spend time together under the watchful eye of an advocate.

Divorce settlement teaches lessons about marital asset division

High net worth divorce cases can be difficult and complex, especially when it comes to dividing up and protecting marital assets. The hope is that everything will be divided up in a way that is fair to both spouses.

Right now, Jamie McCourt, who is the ex-wife of former Dodgers owner Frank McCourt, is claiming this was not the case in her divorce. She claims her ex-husband greatly undervalued the financial worth of the baseball team and that she should be entitled to receive more than what the original settlement called for.

How child support could affect obtaining a car loan

There are plenty of divorced parents in Illinois who are making or receiving child support payments. And while most understand these payments are intended to go toward cost of living expenses -- like food, shelter and clothing -- many are shocked to learn that either paying or receiving child support can have an effect on how lenders view their financial risk situation.

An example is buying a car, as either making or receiving payments can end up playing a role in a lender's decisions on whether or not to grant a loan.

Property division not always easy in divorce

Dividing up property in a divorce can be quite difficult, especially since some things that may seem straight-forward are in fact complicated.

Of course a family law attorney can help sort out the exact details of property division, but here are some tips to keep in mind when thinking about the division of marital property:

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Stange Law Firm, PC
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Belleville, Illinois 62221

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