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Kane County family law attorneyIn today’s world, prenuptial agreements are increasingly common, as people are waiting until they are older to get married for the first time, which also means that they are likely to have accumulated significant assets before they are married. Nobody wants to think about the prospect of divorce, especially before you are even married, but a prenuptial agreement can be greatly beneficial if you and your spouse do eventually decide to call it quits. A prenuptial agreement can help you and your spouse determine the majority of your financial and property division issues with little resistance. Even though a prenuptial agreement is a legal contract, it is not set in stone and can be challenged if you believe the agreement is unfair in some way.

Challenging Your Prenup

As a legally-binding agreement, a prenuptial agreement is also legally enforceable. This means that you must abide by the terms of your prenuptial agreement unless the agreement or portions of the agreement are invalidated. If you feel as if your prenuptial agreement is invalid or unfair, you have the right to ask the court to hear your case. The judge will not simply invalidate a prenuptial agreement because you do not like the terms of the agreement anymore. You must prove that there is a legitimate reason for the invalidation of a section or the entire agreement. Common reasons that a judge may invalidate a prenuptial agreement include:

  • The agreement was disproportionately favorable toward one spouse.

Kane County spousal maintenance lawyerDuring a divorce case, there are a wide variety of legal and financial issues that will need to be addressed. One key issue that may play a role in some divorces is the matter of financial support paid by one spouse to the other. This form of support, which is commonly known as alimony, is referred to as spousal maintenance in Illinois. Those who are going through the divorce process will want to be sure to understand the laws surrounding spousal maintenance and the situations in which it may be awarded. By working with an experienced divorce attorney, you can be sure this issue will be addressed correctly as you work to legally dissolve your marriage.

The Purpose of Spousal Maintenance

Contrary to popular belief, alimony is not meant to be a punishment or a reward for either spouse. Instead, it is intended to address disparities in the incomes earned by divorcing spouses. Following a divorce, spouses should be able to continue living at the standard they enjoyed while they were married, but this can be difficult or impossible for one spouse if the other spouse earned the majority of the family’s income. For a person who was reliant on their spouse to provide for their needs, receiving spousal maintenance will allow them to support themselves after their divorce while also giving them the means to obtain education, pursue employment, and become self-supporting.

When Will Spousal Maintenance Be Awarded?

During the divorce process, a spouse may petition the court for temporary maintenance. These payments can allow them to establish new living arrangements and pay ongoing expenses. When negotiating a divorce settlement or resolving matters through litigation, a spouse may ask that permanent maintenance be awarded. These payments will be made after the divorce is finalized, and in many cases, maintenance will be paid for a fixed amount of time. However, in some cases, maintenance may be reviewable, meaning that after a certain period of time, the court will look at the parties’ circumstances to determine whether payments should continue or be terminated or modified.

Kane County family law lawyerAt Goostree Law Group, we know that our clients and other visitors to our website use our blog as a helpful source of information and answers about divorce and family law in Illinois. In our blog posts, we try to answer common questions and address issues that can arise in the divorce process, as well as in other types of family law cases, such as parental responsibilitiesparental rights, and adoption. Today, we will look back at the ten blogs that were the most popular among our readers throughout 2020:

  1. Can I Sign Away My Parental Rights to an Unborn Child? – We talk about the options that a man has when his partner is pregnant but he does not wish or is not ready to be a father.

  2. Grounds for Terminating Parental Rights in Illinois – We discuss the various conditions under which an Illinois court might terminate a parent’s rights regarding his or her children.

Kane County divorce lawyerUnder Illinois law, an employee who gets hurt on the job is usually eligible for benefits under the state’s workers’ compensation program. These benefits are intended to help both the worker and his or her family. But, what happens when a person who is receiving workers’ compensation benefits gets divorced? If you are in such a situation, the answer to this question could have a substantial effect on your divorce.

Are Benefits a Marital Asset?

You probably realize that workers’ compensation benefits are considered a type of asset. The question, however, is whether they are considered part of the marital estate or not. In general, if the accident that made you eligible for workers’ compensation benefits occurred during your marriage, the benefits are likely to be considered marital property. This may even be the case if your divorce was already in process at the time of your accident. On the other hand, if the accident occurred before your marriage or after a judgment of legal separation was entered, the benefits you have received are not as likely to be considered as property of the marital estate.

Workers’ compensation benefits can be paid out in a single lump sum or in a series of payments over time. Regardless of how you are receiving your benefits, if they are determined to be marital property, your spouse could be entitled to an equitable share of them in your divorce. Your spouse will not automatically get half, however, because Illinois is an “equitable distribution” state. This means that the court will allocate the marital property between you and your spouse in a manner that is fair and just, not necessarily equal. The law requires the court to consider many different factors when deciding on what is fair.

Kane County family lawyerIf you are going through a difficult divorce or trying to survive an emotional child custody battle, it can often seem like there is no end in sight. But the situation can be far worse if your spouse is abusive to your child. Signs of abuse may not be clear when you are married and together as a family, perhaps because you are always around to keep an eye on improper behavior, but once your co-parent is alone with your child after the divorce, it may be important to stay alert for signs that different forms of child abuse might be occurring. From there, you can take the appropriate actions to protect your child.

Be Aware of Different Kinds of Child Abuse

Child abuse occurs when a child’s physical or emotional health, development, or well-being are put into jeopardy. It can take many different forms, and the signs are not always immediately obvious. Some types of abuse that you should be aware of include:

  1. Physical Abuse—This includes various forms of physical assault, restraint, and other behavior that puts the child in serious danger of physical injury to their body.

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