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Divorce Anxiety for the Stay-at-Home Parent: Three Ways the Law Can Work in Your Favor

Posted on in Divorce

divorce, stay-at-home mom, Kane County divorce lawyersWading through the divorce process is a different experience for everyone. For some couples, the process can be rocky from start to finish, while it can be generally smooth throughout for others. A great source of tension usually stems from financial issues, which can impact other matters in the divorce, such as childrearing styles and employment circumstances for each spouse. This applies especially to the stay-at-home parent, who has been accustomed to taking care of the home while their spouse earns the income. One major fear can often trigger a domino effect, resulting in multiple anxieties about the present and the future.

Common Anxieties for the Stay-at-Home Parent

Given the amount of energy that must be expended during the divorce journey, it is understandable how adding the stress of issues like parenting arrangements and the division of property can quickly become overwhelming. It is very common for the parent who has been removed from the workforce for some time to feel stretched thin, fearful of their financial future and how they will care for their family, and what the overhaul of their life will look like and feel like when all is said and done. If you are a stay-at-home parent going through a divorce and are experiencing these common anxieties, take a moment to consider the following:

1. You are entitled to the claiming of assets. When you divorce in the state of Illinois, you have the right to the division of assets, based on any marital property you accumulated. The law considers marital property any asset that was acquired during your marriage (and before the judgment of dissolution of marriage), and may also include pension benefits, benefit plans, and retirement accounts. Before you panic over anticipated financial strain, remember that you may have rights to some of these joint belongings.

2. You may be eligible for spousal maintenance. Also known as alimony or spousal support, maintenance is something the court may deem you eligible for so that you can take care of yourself as a stay-at-home parent. It may also give you the chance to acquire the skills or education you need to re-enter the workforce at a later time. Although spousal maintenance is not guaranteed, the court will often consider the lesser earning spouse in their decision to award a maintenance order. They will look at some factors, including earning potential, the needs of each spouse, and any standing financial obligations. Your attorney can advise you on what you may or may not be eligible for, depending on your circumstances.

3. Legal guidance is available to help you understand child support arrangements. There are statutory guidelines that dictate how much a parent shall pay for the support of a child who is under 18 years of age. If you are a stay-at-home parent concerned about how you will provide for your child following the divorce, the court will address this issue. Also, your attorney can help you understand the child support plan for your family, as well as what options you have for parenting time (or visitation).

Contact a Kane County Divorce Lawyer

Entering the post-divorce world as a stay-at-home parent can be an intimidating, scary experience, but with the right support system, resources, and legal representation, you can make it through to the other side with the peace of mind you need to move forward. Speak with a knowledgeable Kane County divorce attorney who can offer guidance and the assistance you need to prepare for your financial transition. Call the Goostree Law Group today at 630-584-4800 for a one-on-one consultation.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/075000050k503.htm

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/075000050k504.htm

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=075000050K505

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