Schaffer Family Law, Ltd. A World-Class Family Law Firm in Naperville

Call us today to schedule an initial consultation

Domestic And International Family Law Blog

What is non-marital property with property division?

One of the most difficult issues to settle in an Illinois divorce case is property division. This is true whether it is a high asset divorce and there is significant property that both parties stake a claim to or if it is a more modest divorce and there are items of financial and sentimental value in dispute. The law has certain requirements for what constitutes marital and non-marital property. While there can still be a certain amount of confusion and disagreements over property, it is important for people who are planning to divorce or are in the middle of a divorce to understand the difference.

Any property that was acquired by one of the spouses after the marriage will be considered marital property except in certain exceptions. If the property was acquired as a gift, because the spouse receives it as a descendent, or as a legacy, it will be non-marital property. If there was property that a spouse had prior to the marriage and it was exchanged for a property after the marriage, it is non-marital property. Once the spouses have been legally separated and one acquires property, it will not be considered marital property. In some cases, there will be a valid agreement between the parties such as a prenuptial agreement or a postnuptial agreement - in such an instance, the property will be excluded from being marital property.

Amendment to Illinois law regulating parenting time proposed

For Illinois parents who have parted ways, custody and visitation is often one of the most difficult issues for them to hash out. Determining which parent will be the custodial parent, what the visitation plan will be, and how to assess best interests of children are just some of the factors that must be decided. Fathers frequently believe they face an unfair bias when parenting time and custody is allocated. A proposed change to the law seeks to make the process fairer to fathers and give them 50-50 custody is being considered.

If the changes are implemented, the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution Act will give each parent equal custody of the child. Those supporting this amendment believe that it will do away with ingrained perceptions that one parent is in a better position to provide adequate care to the child over the other parent. In addition, it will give fathers the chance to have greater involvement in the lives of their children.

When can my divorce be a joint simplified dissolution?

Not all Illinois divorces are contentious and complicated with emotional issues causing discord between the parties. In certain cases, the couple can resolve their issues without rancor and simply part ways and move on with their lives. Those whose circumstances are such that amicable resolutions are possible should understand what is necessary under state law to have a joint simplified dissolution of marriage. There are conditions that must be met for a joint simplified dissolution.

Neither of the people in the marriage must be dependent on the other for support. If one is dependent on the other for support, the supported spouse must be willing to waive that right. One of the parties must meet the residency requirements or the military presence requirement. There must be proof of irreconcilable differences. The relationship must not have produced children either naturally born or adopted while they were married and the wife cannot be currently pregnant and know she is currently pregnant by the husband.

Tax season begins: what Illinois divorcees should know

Last December, just weeks before the start of the 2018 tax season, President Trump passed a new tax policy into law. Although the impact of this reform is mostly unknown, the Chicago Tribune reports that some changes may already be underway.

Illinois residents who are recently divorced probably have an entirely new tax situation as well as questions about the policy. For your first time filing taxes after divorce, you will have to consider the factors unique to your new circumstances.

Family law attorney David N. Schaffer earns 2018 Super Lawyers recognition

David N. Schaffer was selected for inclusion in 2018 Illinois Super Lawyers. Schaffer Family Law, Ltd. of Naperville, Illinois principal and founder David N. Schaffer has successfully handled numerous legal and family law issues for over the past 30 years. He is active in cases involving international child custody, kidnapping and abduction. His purview includes cases concerning wrongful retention issues covered by the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction and the Federal Parental Kidnapping Prevention Act.

How the selection process works

Each year, Super Lawyers selects attorneys using a patented multiphase selection process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, peer reviews and independent research of candidates. The results are credible, comprehensive and diverse listings of exceptional attorneys.

How are child support modifications done in Illinois?

Illinois parents who share a child but are not together as a couple any longer must determine who will have custody and how much will be paid in child support by the supporting parent. While issues such as paying, child support enforcement and other factors will frequently arise, there are situations in which one of the parents would like to have child support modifications completed. There are certain rules that the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS), Division of Child Support Services (DCSS) uses to modify support.

When the modification is by DCSS, it is only applicable to the child support order and the child's health care. If an order from the court is modified, it is done through HFS' DCSS. A review can be requested once every three years. There must be one of the following conditions in place for there to be a review of the order: a minimum of three years must have passed from the time the child support order was established or there was a review to determine if there should be a modification; the noncustodial parent had what is found to be a "substantial change" in his or her income; the order does not provide healthcare; or there was a written request from a parent or another state that is sent to the DCSS.

New Illinois pet custody law in affect in 2018

Divorcing couples in Illinois have a number of issues to deal with. For one, they have to worry about dividing up their marital property, including their family home, vehicles, and other prized possessions. Another common issue, is dealing with child custody arrangements. Determining where the child will live, how much time they get with each parent, and how much influence each parent has on the child's life can be challenging.

One commonly overlooked family law issue is determining who gets the family pet after a divorce. In the past, pets were treated like any other piece of property and would be given to one spouse or the other. This posed to be a problem when both spouses had a close attachment to the pet. However, a new law in Illinois, effective January 1, 2018, attempts to solve this problem by treating pets more like members of the family.

5 Apps That Help Divorced Parents

5 apps that help

  • Text to Email:Not everyone wants to take a screen shot of every text. Look into these apps to avoid this. Email my Texts, Print text messages and Relay Me. You may want to time stamp your communication as well so there is a record of when the message was sent and received.
  • Our Family Wizard (OFW): A best bet for parents who do not always agree. The best feature is a setting that allows third party access to the correspondence- such as a coordinator, therapist or judge. It also has a ToneMeter which has been called an "emotional spell checker" which not only catches errors but also offers options. The annual subscription fee gets you a calendar, messaging platform, expense tracker and a journal.
  • Google Calendar: This free app is simple, easy to use and widely accessible. If you simply need to share a joint calendar so that you what is scheduled on a day-to-day basis this may be the one that works for you. Google Docs and Google Drive are good places to communicate with your ex about what is happening at school or the kids' extracurricular activities
  • SupportPay: Having a tough time keeping track of expenses? This app helps parents reconcile child support and medical expenses.
  • Artkive: Who gets the kids' artwork? Now you can save, share and post artwork. Parents who like to de-clutter like this app.

Technology to the rescue

Technology can increase communication effectiveness, accuracy and speed. While this is not a comprehensive list it might help you get started on finding the app that works for your family. Good communication between parents often results in better relationships all around.

Long and winding road to Goesel and family law disgorgement

On Nov. 30, the Illinois Supreme Court, in In re Marriage of Christine Goesel and Andrew Goesel, 2017 IL 122046 (2017), held that earned attorney fees — as in fees received for actual services rendered — are not “available” for turnover, or disgorgement, pursuant to a petition for interim attorney fees brought under Section 5/501(c-1) of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act and, thus, resolving a contentious split in the circuits.

This article will touch upon the history, as well as the main cases cited in Goesel, which got us to where we are today.

AV Peer Review Rated AVVO Leading Lawyers Find a Better Lawyer Faster American Academy Of Matrimonial Lawyers International Academy of Family Lawyers Super Lawyer David N.Schaffer

When you are ready to discuss your family law matter with an experienced lawyer, we are here for you. Call us today at 630-922-4500 or contact us online to arrange your initial consultation.

Review Us

Contact The Firm

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Office Location

Schaffer Family Law, Ltd.
200 East 5th Avenue
Suite 108
Naperville, IL 60563

Toll Free: 800-774-9011
Fax: 630-922-4507
Naperville Family Law Office