If a divorce is in your future or recently completed, it is normal to have questions. Read below for answers to the divorce-related questions we most often receive here at The Law Office of Vogel & Mourelatos, LLC.
Marriage dissolution is dependent on the willingness of the parties to come to an agreement on important issues such as child support, alimony/spousal maintenance, allocation of parental responsibility, and asset division. The more the parties can agree on items and reduce conflict, the shorter the divorce process usually takes. Our attorneys have extensive experience with even the most complex divorce issues, and we handle each case with compassion, skill, and proficiency.
A legal separation allows spouses who choose to live apart from each other to resolve important legal issues such as parental responsibility, parenting time, child support, and spousal support without dissolving their marriage. Legally separated spouses are not allowed to get remarried, and certain spousal rights are retained that would otherwise be terminated during a divorce.
Generally, property acquired prior to the marriage, as well as property acquired during the marriage as a gift or inheritance, is considered non-marital property. However, there are times when non-marital property can become partially or fully marital in nature. For example, if you bought your house before you were married but made several years of mortgage payments during the marriage, a significant percentage of the house may be considered marital property.
The portion of your retirement plan that was accumulated while you were married is considered part of the marital estate and subject to asset division. To avoid tax penalties, certain specific and technical requirements must be followed during the division of retirement accounts.
This depends on the specific circumstances of your case. It is always in the best interests of divorcing spouses to come to a mutual agreement on the allocation of parental responsibility and parenting time before presenting a parenting plan to the court for approval. Otherwise, the court will decide on the allocation of parental responsibility for you and your spouse.
When marriage dissolution is finalized, a final judgment is entered into the court. However, substantial changes in circumstances often warrant a post-judgment order modification. For example, when there are job losses, debilitating injuries, relocations, and other major changes, it may be appropriate to revisit and revise the terms and conditions of child support and spousal support. Our attorneys will stand with you throughout the divorce process and after it is over to ensure that you can make any necessary changes to meet the needs of you and your family.
If the parent responsible for paying child support
is not meeting his/her financial obligations, you can initiate enforcement action administratively through the Illinois Department of Child Support Services (DCSS). A post-judgment order enforcement action can also be filed privately through the local circuit court.
If you and your spouse can agree on the major issues or at least be willing to work cooperatively toward a mutual agreement, your divorce could be settled without the need for costly and protracted litigation. It is always our goal to help our clients resolve their issues amicably. We encourage a cooperative approach, but we understand that this is not always possible. We are seasoned litigators, and when necessary, we are ready and able to aggressively advocate for your rights and interests inside the courtroom.