Give Teens a Say in Post-Divorce Holiday PlansTeenagers can react differently to their first holiday season after a divorce than a younger child will. Younger children are more open about feeling sad or upset, while teenagers may try to suppress their emotions so as not to create turmoil. As a result, they may seem disinterested and unenthusiastic about the holidays but are actually upset and possibly angry. You need to approach your teenager differently than you would a young child when deciding on how to handle parenting time during the holidays.

Making Decisions

Teenagers generally seek more independence as they near adulthood. A divorce forces a change upon them, taking away their ability to control their family lives. They may feel like they cannot decide how and with whom they will celebrate the holidays. You can give them a sense of control by talking to them before deciding:

  • Which holiday traditions you will continue;
  • Whether you will create new holiday traditions; and
  • Who they will get to see on a specific holiday, such as Christmas.

You should consider their requests but set boundaries for what is reasonable. For instance, what your teen may want the most is for you to celebrate Christmas together with your former spouse as if you are still married. You understand how difficult this would be for both of you and how the tension could lead to a confrontation. If your teen wants to see both of you that day, you can come up with other solutions that involve you or your teen traveling.

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Protecting Yourself Against Identity Theft During DivorceGoing through a divorce can put you at risk of identity theft by your spouse, who knows much of your personal information and may be motivated to use it against you. He or she may steal your identity for financial gain or revenge. Even if your spouse has no history of stealing from you, the stress of divorce may cause him or her to behave unusually. If you do not protect yourself in time, identity theft can drain your financial resources and ruin your credit rating.

Prevention

You should act during your divorce as though your personal information is vulnerable, even if the likelihood that your spouse would steal your identity seems remote. Your spouse knows enough about you to circumvent some of the security measures that protect your private accounts. At the beginning of your divorce, you should:

  • Run a credit report so you are aware of all the financial accounts you are connected to and may be liable for;
  • Revoke your spouse’s access to your individual accounts that you gave him or her during your marriage;
  • Create individual accounts to replace the marital counts that you controlled equally with your spouse;
  • Change your passwords to something impersonal so your spouse will not have a chance of guessing it; and
  • Set up security alerts on your financial accounts to monitor suspicious and potentially fraudulent activity.

Reaction

You must respond quickly to minimize the damage if you suspect that your spouse has used your identity for fraudulent activity. You should:

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How to Announce Your Divorce Through Social MediaTelling each person you know individually about your divorce can be exhausting and stressful. It also creates many socially awkward situations where the person is not sure how to respond to the news. You would feel relieved if you could just tell them all at the same time. Social media makes this possible in ways that previous generations did not have. However, you must carefully plan out when and how you make the announcement because it will determine how people respond to the news:

  1. Tell Your Closest Friends First: There is no avoiding having a conversation about your divorce with your family and closest friends. They deserve to hear the news from you personally because they may be emotionally invested in your relationship. Think of how you would feel if you learned about your best friend’s divorce through a Facebook announcement. Your friends can also be your allies when making your larger announcement.
  2. Create One Unified Announcement: You can help minimize the drama from your divorce announcement by making it together with your former spouse. Most likely, one of you will write it and send it to the other to get approval before posting it. If your relationship is too strained for this type of cooperation, it is still best to be civil in your announcement and consider how your spouse will react.
  3. Set Expectations with Your Message: You do not need to share intimate details about your divorce, but a short announcement will invite people to respond with questions that you may feel uncomfortable answering. You can give a generic reason why you are getting a divorce or tell people you do not want to talk about. Let people know if you do not want them to ask questions or offer help.
  4. Consider Your Audience: A divorce announcement is appropriate for people who are personal acquaintances. You may use certain social media accounts for professional contacts or more casual acquaintances. Use the social media platform that will only reach the people who you feel need to hear the news. Adjust the privacy settings for your announcement accordingly.
  5. Assign a Spokesperson: You may want to avoid the pressure of responding to people who leave comments on your announcement. You can ask a close friend or family member to respond on your behalf. This person should know how to reply to someone offering help or asking an awkward or inappropriate question.

Contact a Kane County Divorce Attorney

Your divorce announcement should be the only time you talk about your divorce on social media. Your best strategy will be to keep a low profile on social media throughout your divorce so you will not do something that may hurt your case. A St. Charles, Illinois, divorce lawyer at Goostree Law Group can advise you on the proper behavior when going through a divorce. Schedule a free consultation by calling 630-584-4800.

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Court Orders Retired Father to Pay Same Level of Child SupportLosing your job and being forced into retirement normally qualifies as a change of circumstances that will allow you to reduce your child support payments. The recent decision for In re Marriage of Verhines shows that a court will consider more than income to determine a parent’s child support obligation in high-income cases. The Illinois appellate court said that there were unique circumstances in this case as opposed to a normal request for child support relief.

Case Background

A 65-year-old divorced father of a teenage son initially requested a reduction of his child support payments in December 2015 after his forced termination from his previous position as an executive at a packaging company. The father was paying $3,043 per month based on his previous income but effectively entered retirement because he was unable to secure another full-time executive position at his age. A trial court reduced his child support payments to $1,700 per month, claiming that the father’s income was $78,000 per year and that he could not be expected to withdraw from his retirement benefits to maintain the same level of child support payments. He had previously taken $400,000 out of his retirement account to pay for personal expenses.

Decision Reversal

An Illinois appellate court recently overturned the trial court’s ruling and reinstated the original child support amount. The appellate court said that the trial court’s decision ignored key factors and used faulty logic:

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Finding a Job After Your DivorceDivorce leaves you little choice but to re-enter the workforce if you were not employed during your marriage. You may receive spousal maintenance on the condition that you try to become self-supporting. You need your own source of income anyways because maintenance payments may not give you enough money to live comfortably. Finding a job can be a difficult and sometimes frustrating experience, particularly if you have been unemployed for several years. You must prepare for the job search process to find ultimate success.

Determine Your Career

Looking for a job starts with knowing what job you want and how to present yourself as a qualified candidate. It may not be as simple as re-entering the career field of your last job because job requirements can change in just a few years. Before you apply for jobs, you should:

  • Discuss your job search goals with a career counselor;
  • Determine whether you need to update your job skills with continuing education;
  • Identify which jobs best match your strengths and skills; and
  • Update your resume to reflect your most recent experience.

Understand the Application Process

If it has been years since you last looked for a job, you will notice that the application process has changed drastically. Most employers post their openings through online job listings and require you to submit your application electronically. Finding and applying for jobs online is convenient, but the process makes it difficult for you to stand out from other candidates. The keys to the online application process are:

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Goostree Law Group

Goostree Law Group

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

 630-584-4800

 1770 Park Street, Suite 205
Naperville IL 60563

 630-364-4046

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

 630-407-1777

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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