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Posted on in Child Custody

How Divorce Has Improved for Men in the Past DecadeDivorce in the U.S. has changed in many ways during the last decade. The divorce rate has settled down from the boom the country experienced in the 1970s. Millennials, who were the children of many of those divorces, are waiting longer to get married and start a family. Divorce has also become more amicable because of the rising use of conflict resolution methods such as mediation and collaborative divorce. Women have increasing power during the process and are less likely to be financially dependent upon men. However, men have also seen increased benefits from divorce, thanks to that same trend towards gender equality.

Father’s Rights

The presumption used to be that the mother would have most of the control over the children after a divorce because the mother was the primary caretaker in the family. Fathers would typically have less decision-making power, and equal parenting time was practically unheard of. Now, courts see the importance of both divorced parents having a major role in raising their children. This means that courts:

  • Are more likely to consider a father’s request for equal parenting time
  • May give a majority of the parenting time to a father if it is in the children’s best interest
  • May give more weight to a father’s desire for shared parenting, even if they were less active as a parent during the marriage

It is difficult to obtain equal parenting time in Illinois because courts presume that it is better for the children if one parent has more parenting time. Still, a proactive father is more likely to be rewarded, instead of getting the children every other weekend.

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Posted on in Divorce

How to Set Goals Before You DivorceIt is not enough to wait until after your divorce is over to decide on your post-divorce goals. You should already know what your primary goals are before you start the divorce process so that you can negotiate your divorce with those goals in mind. Once the court has approved your divorce agreement, it will be difficult to modify it if you realize that you missed an opportunity for your agreement to help you achieve a goal. A skilled divorce attorney and a divorce coach can help you identify your divorce goals and plan for how you will achieve them.

Actionable Goals

Most people have a vague idea about what they want from their divorce, but you will be most successful during your divorce if you have specific and quantifiable goals. Saying that you want a “fair share” or a “reasonable agreement” does not tell you how to recognize whether you are achieving your goals. It is more helpful to say that you want:

  • Specific properties from your marriage
  • A percentage of your marital assets
  • A number of hours with your children each week

You can most accurately quantify your divorce goals by consulting with your divorce lawyer and figuring out what you need.

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Posted on in Divorce

How to Survive a High-Conflict DivorceAny divorce professional will tell you that it is beneficial to have an amicable divorce. You save money by having quicker negotiations and feel better about the process after it is over. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that you will have an amicable divorce because you are only half of the equation. There is little that you can do to change the behavior of a spouse who is hostile towards you from the start of the divorce. Though your divorce will not be amicable, you can still try to make the best of the situations by controlling your own behavior.

Recognizing a High-Conflict Divorce

High-conflict divorce is often characterized by constant combativeness that prevents you from having reasonable discussions with your spouse. The combative spouse could be outwardly angry or silent and uncooperative. People in a high-conflict divorce often:

  • Get into arguments over basic issues
  • View negotiations as all-or-nothing
  • Resort to personal attacks
  • Seem to focus as much on punishing their spouse as benefiting themselves

The stress of divorce can cause people to behave in unusual ways, such as being more emotional and defensive. Some people have pre-existing personality disorders that are worsened by divorce. If you are struggling with feelings of anger and hostility during your divorce, visiting a mental health professional or support group may help.

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Posted on in Divorce

Why Hiring a Divorce Coach Is Worth the CostGetting divorced involves expenses that are necessary for completing the process in a way that meets your needs. For instance, you need to hire a divorce attorney so that you have an experienced legal professional who makes sure that your divorce agreement takes full advantage of the law and does not contain errors. Hiring a divorce coach may seem like a less necessary expense, especially if you are worried about your budget. However, there are several reasons why a divorce coach is worth the investment:

  1. A Divorce Coach Can Focus on Your Personal Life: Who should you contact when you have pressing questions about how your divorce will affect your personal life? Friends and family can be compassionate but likely do not have the experience to provide you solutions. Your attorney’s primary job is to work on the legal aspects of your divorce. Asking them to also be your divorce coach is not the best use of their time or your money. Your divorce coach is trained to be your resource for how to handle the personal and emotional aspects of your divorce.
  2. A Divorce Coach Is a Voice of Reason: Getting divorced can cause people to think irrationally and make decisions that end up hurting themselves. When you are blinded by emotions, you need someone who is objective and able to guide you towards better decisions. Friends and family may be uncomfortable confronting you because they are afraid to damage your relationship. Your divorce coach can give you the advice you need while also being sensitive to your emotions.
  3. A Divorce Coach Builds You into a Better Divorcee: It is difficult to mentally and emotionally prepare yourself for divorce, which will affect your life in ways that you may not anticipate. It helps to have someone who knows what to expect and can work with you to create a plan for how you will handle these challenges. This is one of the major benefits of having a divorce coach. They do more than react when a problem arises. As the word “coach” suggests, they teach you how to overcome the challenges you will face and approach your divorce with a healthy attitude. 

Contact a St. Charles, Illinois, Divorce Coach

Once you have decided that you need a divorce coach, your next step is to find one. Luckily, Goostree Law Group has a divorce coach on staff who works with our Kane County divorce attorneys on cases. To learn more about our divorce coaching service, schedule a free consultation by calling 630-584-4800.

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Withholding Parenting Time Can Violate Civil and Criminal LawsWhen one spouse believes that the other spouse wronged them during their marriage, they may want their divorce agreement to be a way to punish their spouse. Illinois divorce laws do not assign blame to either party for actions such as infidelity, but the court may favor the “victim” spouse when dividing marital properties if the cheating spouse used marital assets to pay for the affair. Parenting time is not a commodity that you withhold from your spouse to punish them. You must base all of your parenting decisions on what is best for your children, and obstructing parenting time without court approval can have civil and criminal consequences.

Allocating Parental Responsibilities

When you try to punish your co-parent by limiting or denying their access to your children, you are also punishing your children by hurting their relationship with their other parent. Denying parenting time is appropriate only when you can prove that your co-parent is a danger to your children. Abusive behavior by your co-parent is the most obvious example of proof, but your co-parent’s infidelity is not evidence by itself that they are a bad parent. 

Violation of Parenting Time

When a parent is dissatisfied with the outcome of their parenting agreement, they may try to get back at their co-parent through parental alienation or obstructing parenting time. Attempting to alienate your children from your co-parent will cause them pain and likely damage your own relationship with them. Withholding your children during your co-parent’s parenting time is a violation of a court order that can result in:

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