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February 2012 Archives

Custody decisions: Best interest of the child, dog, cat, bunny ...

If Timmy's parents divorced, who would get custody of Lassie? Would she go with Timmy's dad, the human who trained her so well? Or would she go with Timmy's mom, the human who fed Lassie and took her to the vet for her check-ups? Or, would she go wherever Timmy went? In the '50s, shared physical custody was rare, so perhaps Timmy's mom would have custody of Timmy, and the boy's dad would keep Lassie.

US Supreme Court: Will marriage be on the docket soon? p. 2

We are continuing our discussion of the U.S. Supreme Court and same-sex marriage. The Illinois General Assembly is just one of many state legislatures grappling with the issue; several states are preparing for votes to approve constitutional amendments the define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

International child custody dispute reaches conclusion

Child custody disputes are usually complicated and full of emotion for Illinois families. An estranged couple's multi-national child custody battle recently reached a resolution. Just over two years ago, the custody battle took center stage, as the boy's parents brought their clash all the way to the United States Supreme Court.

US Supreme Court: Will marriage be on the docket soon?

As Illinois nears the end of the first year of the Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act, the General Assembly is gearing up for a debate about same-sex marriage. Civil unions may grant same-sex couples many of the same rights and responsibilities that a married couple has -- including the right to divorce -- but, for proponents, it is not marriage. This is not the only state dealing with the issue, either.

Reassure your kids to help them through divorce

We've all heard the statistics that half of all marriages end in divorce, but when you make the decision to end your marriage, you need to be prepared to deal with many challenges. If children are part of the equation, you need to keep in mind that divorce can have a profound effect on them unless you take some steps to ease the transition.

Appeals court hears arguments in unusual custody battle

An unusual and emotional custody fight made its way to the Illinois Appellate Court last week. The case involves a man who is asking for custody and visitation of the child his ex-wife adopted during their brief marriage. The problem is that he never filed stepparent adoption papers.

Building credit after property division and divorce

Going through divorce and property division for many in Illinois is a trying time. Often individuals feel like they have to start their financial lives over and in some cases that can be the reality. Sometimes individuals have to recover from the financial mistakes of shared accounts or individuals may have to build credit for the first time.

Could alimony reform go too far?

Alimony reform is a hot topic these days in many states that have advocate groups pushing for change in alimony laws. While some change may be needed, some feel that these alimony reforms may hurt older, divorced women the most, by making their financial future unstable.

Fathering programs help dads reconnect with kids and community

It's hard enough being a father. For noncustodial fathers, the challenge is more than making child support payments, dealing with child custody issues or visitation schedules. In too many cases, the challenge is maintaining a solid relationship with the child or children.

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