Six Keys to a Successful Divorce NegotiationParties negotiating a divorce settlement must walk a fine line between protecting their interests and cooperating with the other side. A person who acquiesces too often may end up with an unfavorable settlement. However, being uncompromising can prevent the sides from reaching an agreement. When spouses are unable to settle their divorce on their own, a court is forced to make important decisions for them. The resulting divorce settlement may leave both parties unsatisfied. If you plan to divorce, it is in your best interest to reach an agreement with your spouse on a settlement. You can improve your chances of a healthy negotiation by planning your approach to the process:

  1. Identify Your Priorities: Arguing every aspect of your divorce will slow down negotiations and create a combative atmosphere. Before negotiations start, you should determine which aspects of the settlement are most important to you. Save your arguments for those aspects, and be more willing to compromise on other aspects.
  2. Check Your Emotions: You may have left your spouse on bad terms, but that should not prevent you from being professional during negotiations. Speak only for yourself during the negotiations and keep the discussion away from unnecessary topics that may cause an argument.
  3. Tackle Urgent Issues First: There are parts of a divorce settlement that both you and your spouse are anxious to discuss. Address them early on, rather than letting them linger over the negotiations.
  4. Avoid Intimidation Tactics: Do not make offers that you know are unfair or give ultimatums. Pressuring your spouse may put him or her on the defensive, but you also risk a breakdown in negotiations. You may lose more by allowing a court to settle your divorce than if you had been willing to compromise.
  5. Be Honest and Forthright: Lying about your finances to gain an advantage will put you in a weaker position if you get caught. Be proactive in providing information about yourself as a sign that you will conduct these negotiations in good faith.
  6. Swallow Your Pride: Egos on both sides can prevent spouses from continuing negotiations or reaching a sensible agreement. Be willing to sacrifice your pride in order to prevent a break in negotiations.

Legal Guidance

When negotiating your divorce settlement, it may be difficult to know when you should be aggressive and when you should be willing to concede. A Kane County divorce attorney at Goostree Law Group can advise you on how to conduct a successful negotiation that results in the divorce settlement you need. To schedule a free consultation, call 630-584-4800.

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Immature Marriage More Likely to End in DivorceA popular myth about marriage in the U.S. is that half of all first marriages end in divorce. Data says that the divorce rate peaked at 40 percent in 1980 and has been declining since. Thus, it is false to assume that a marriage is just as likely to fail as succeed because it is a first marriage. However, there is a demographic that is more likely to divorce from their first marriage. They are people who:

  • Marry when they are younger than 25;
  • Do not have a college education; and
  • Are in a lower income class.

These characteristics identify people who are getting married when they are still immature.

Marriage Is Work

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Filing for Bankruptcy When Getting DivorcedSpouses share their debts during a marriage. When they decide to divorce, those debts are split between the two sides, with each spouse taking responsibility for paying a portion of the debt. However, creditors hold divorced spouses equally liable for their marital debts, regardless of the terms of the divorce settlement. If one divorced spouse fails to pay his or her share of the debt, the creditor will go after both spouses. A couple facing overwhelming debt can file for bankruptcy to either discharge the debt or create a repayment plan. Bankruptcy may allow a divorcing couple to reduce or eliminate the shared debt that will tie them together after their marriage has ended. Couples should consider filing for bankruptcy before they divorce.

Types of Bankruptcy

People most commonly file for either chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy. The differences between the two may determine which type a divorcing couple prefers and when they want to file:

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Why Friends May Abandon You During Your DivorceWhen you are starting your divorce, you may take comfort in the belief that you can rely upon your friends to provide emotional support during the process. Unfortunately, your divorce can change your relationship with your friends. Some may try to distance themselves from you by:

  • Treating you coldly;
  • Declining social invitations; or
  • Not inviting you to social events.

You may feel betrayed because these friends have abandoned you when you need them. Before completely writing these people off, you should understand how divorce can affect people’s friendships.

Staying Impartial

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Four Scenarios Using Illinois' New Child Support LawIn July, Illinois enacted a long-anticipated overhaul of its child support payment law. Whereas the previous system always placed the financial burden on the party with less parenting time, the income shares model more equitably splits the parenting cost between the parties. The court combines the parents’ net monthly incomes and calculates the percentage of the combined incomes that each parent’s individual income accounts for. The court consults a chart that quantifies the expected monthly child-related expenses, based on the number of children and combined incomes. Each parent is responsible for paying for a percentage of the child-related expenses that equals the percentage that his or her income makes up of the combined incomes.

In most cases, the parent who is allocated a majority of the parenting time will still receive child support payments from the other parent. However, the amount will vary more than it did under the previous system, depending on:

  • If the recipient parent has a greater income than the paying parent; and
  • If the parenting time is split so that each parent has the children for at least 40 percent of the time during a year, which is called Shared Physical Care.

To help explain the new income shares model, here are four child support scenarios. In each scenario, the parents have two children and a combined net monthly income of $5,000:

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Goostree Law Group

Goostree Law Group

 555 S. Randall Road, Suite 200
St. Charles, IL 60174


 400 S. County Farm Road, Suite 300
Wheaton, IL 60187


Our Illinois divorce attorneys represent clients in Kane County, DuPage County, Kendall County and DeKalb County, including Geneva, Batavia, St.Charles, Wayne, Wasco, Elburn, Virgil, Lily Lake, Aurora, North Aurora, Elgin, South Elgin, Bartlett, Crystal Lake, Gilberts, Millcreek, Maple Park, Kaneville, LaFox, Yorkville, Oswego, Plano, Sugar Grove, Big Rock, Bristol, Newark, DeKalb, Sycamore, Naperville, Wheaton, West Chicago, Winfield, Warrenville, Downers Grove, Lombard, Oak Brook, Streamwood, Hoffman Estates, Barrington, South Barrington, Lake Barrington, Schaumburg, Big Grove, Boulder Hill, Bristol, Joliet, Kendall, Lisbon, Minooka, Montgomery, Plainfield, Sandwich, Yorkville and many other cities.

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