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IL divorce lawyerPrenuptial agreements are growing in popularity as a great way for engaged couples to delineate their financial expectations in a relationship and stipulate what will happen with certain issues if they get divorced. However, not everyone wants a prenuptial agreement before they get married and cannot imagine a scenario in which they get divorced.

Fortunately, the state of Illinois allows married couples to create a postnuptial agreement after the excitement of the wedding wears off and spouses settle into real life. But postnuptial agreements are not only for couples facing challenges - they can give all couples comfort in knowing that if a divorce is down the road, but they can also settle certain issues quickly and easily, potentially saving themselves time, money, and heartache.

What is the Point of a Postnuptial Agreement?

Like a prenuptial agreement, postnuptial agreements are legal contracts wherein spouses agree ahead of time about what they will do regarding certain issues if they should get divorced. Specifically, postnuptial agreements often address the question of marital and individual property, determining how spouses will divide what they owned before getting married and what they have accumulated together. Spouses can also address the question of spousal maintenance (formerly known as alimony) and may even address what the financial contributions of each spouse towards retirement and savings funds will be during the marriage.


IL divorce lawyerOnce you’ve made the decision to get divorced, you have to choose from a wide variety of options and strategies. Do you want to try to do it yourself in an uncontested divorce? Is it better to approach the situation cooperatively, or to try to aggressively pursue everything you are hoping for? Do you want to utilize a large team of professionals, or keep the process as small as possible?

While not every situation allows parties to cooperate, there are two great alternative dispute resolution strategies that are highly effective even when the dynamic between divorcing spouses seems impossible to navigate: Collaborative divorce and mediation. Whether either of these options is good for you can be a tough decision to make, but a qualified Illinois divorce attorney may be able to provide advice.

Collaborative Divorce

Collaborative divorce involves both spouses hiring their own attorney who is committed to working together with a team to create a divorce agreement. Because attorneys are required to work with each other, everybody shares the goal of solving issues and reducing conflict. Spouses can hire a team of divorce professionals that may include a child psychologist, a divorce coach, financial professionals, as well as anyone else who might be helpful. If the collaborative divorce process fails, the entire team is dissolved and the attorneys cannot represent spouses in the future.


IL family lawyerIllinois family law is primarily interested in preserving the best interests of children. Because both parents have a financial obligation to support children, child support payments must be calculated when parents get divorced. This can be a stressful experience for both parents, and a certain amount of anxiety and frustration is normal.

Calculating child support payments in an Illinois divorce or child support order modification is done according to a formula, but it is not a simple process. Illinois uses a process known as the “income shares method” to determine each parent’s financial obligation and whether one parent must make payments to the other. We will discuss this method in some detail below.

How Does a Parent’s Income Influence Child Support Payments?

Both parents must share their gross monthly income in a financial affidavit with supporting evidence like pay stubs or W-2s. Then, using a standardized chart, the parents’ gross incomes are used to estimate their “Standardized Net Income.” By combining each parent’s Standardized Net Income, child support payments are then estimated using the Income Shares Schedule chart to determine the total child support amount parents must contribute. Then, according to the percentage of the parents’ Combined Net Income each parent earns, as well as how much time each parent spends with the child, final monthly payments are determined.


IL divorceThe prospect of divorce in Illinois brings with it a host of questions and issues that must be resolved. Because pregnancy also raises complex questions and difficulties, it is no wonder that getting divorced while one spouse is pregnant presents unique concerns.

People who are considering divorce but are unsure of how a pregnancy would change the process often have many questions. In this blog, we will answer some of the most common questions about combining these two important processes, but readers should keep in mind that a qualified Illinois divorce attorney is the best person to go to for help.

Is a Simplified Divorce Available to Pregnant Couples?

Many young couples who have not been married for long and who do not share complex assets can file for a simplified divorce, which is generally easy, faster, and less costly than a contested divorce. But simplified divorces are only available to couples who do not have children or who are not pregnant.


IL family lawyerDivorced parents in Illinois often feel relief at the prospect of seeing child support payments end when their child turns 18 or graduates from high school. Of course, this does not signal the end of the parent’s support for the child but instead marks the end of one parent making payments to another parent on behalf of the child.

But divorced parents should be aware that certain circumstances exist wherein they may be ordered to financially support their child even after the age of 18. A court order to assist a child with college expenses is one such case. Understanding how Illinois law works in this regard is important for ensuring you meet your legal obligations.

When Can Parents Be Ordered to Pay College Expenses for an Adult Child?

Interestingly, Illinois courts do not have the authority to require married parents to pay for their child’s college expenses. But if the parents are divorced or were never married, the courts do have this authority. This kind of child support is called “non-minor support.”

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