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Libertyville Divorce Blog

Why it is important to understand marital finances in a divorce

People in Illinois who are going through a divorce may be surprised to learn that their spouse has debt or assets they did not know about. According to a study by Fidelity Investments, 10% of participants found out during the divorce that a spouse had hidden assets, and 14% found out about debt.

One way to prevent this is to remain an active participant in financial decisions within the marriage even if the other spouse mainly handles the money. The Fidelity study found that people who did not know much about the marital finances took the longest time to recover financially. They also tended to regret not being more involved in the joint finances. Both spouses should have an idea about what is in their retirement accounts and tax returns, and they should have a voice in major financial decisions.

3 important benefits of divorce mediation

Do you think that there is no way to avoid spending a fortune on your divorce? Feel as if you have no other option than to fight your ex tooth and nail over every lamp or area rug? Think again. These days, some former couples making their way through divorce find that they can do all the things that they need to do to move forward with their separate lives without having to go through litigation.

Instead, many former couples opt for divorce mediation, which involves both parties coming together with an unbiased third party to work through matters to end the marriage. While mediation may not work in all circumstances, if your split is at least relatively amicable, it may serve you both well to consider it. Why? Compared with a courtroom divorce, divorce mediation offers several notable benefits, such as:

How a postnuptial agreement could protect a couple's assets

Lots of Illinois residents are familiar with how a prenuptial agreement works. It is a legal document that's designed to protect a person's assets in case they divorce in the future. Not everyone, however, is familiar with a postnuptial agreement.

A postnuptial agreement shares some similarities with a prenuptial agreement. However, the "post" version is signed by each partner during the marriage. It will protect the assets of each individual in case they separate or divorce in the future.

How divorce impacts older people financially

Since 1990, the divorce rate for couples 50 and older has doubled. Divorces can have both a financial and emotional impact on Illinois residents and others who go through them. Research has shown that those who have ended their marriage may be at a greater risk of higher blood pressure or excessive weight gain. Individuals who get a divorce later in life can see a decline in both their net worth and their standard of living.

Those who get divorced after the age of 50 will see their net worth drop by about 50%. Women will see their standard of living decrease by 45% while men will see their standard of living drop by 21%. Furthermore, most who get divorced later in life don't see any type of financial improvement in the years following the end of their marriages. For women, this is partially because it can be harder to find a job after spending years raising a child.

Negotiate your way to an amicable divorce settlement

Coming to terms with the very fact of divorce is enough stress to handle. You may find the prospect of facing a tough courtroom battle wholly intimidating.

Negotiation is an option to consider. There are a number of benefits, starting with the location: You and your spouse can work toward an amicable divorce settlement away from the courtroom.

Experts say divorce filings higher in January

Married couples in Illinois may be more likely to file for divorce in January than in other months. Experts say there are several reasons there is a spike at this time of year.

The holiday can be a stressful time that highlights problems in a relationship. After days or weeks of an unusual amount of family togetherness and traveling, some people might realize that they want out of the marriage. Others may have made up their minds already but want to give their children one last good holiday together. Parents who celebrate Christmas rarely want to break divorce news to their children days beforehand. Other people may simply see the new year as a fresh start and might realize they want to start by getting out of their relationship.

Christina Hendricks seeks divorce after 10-year marriage

Many people in Illinois are fans of Christina Hendricks' work on the TV show "Mad Men," but they may be surprised to learn that she is facing romantic conflict in her own life as well. According to reports, Hendricks has filed for divorce from her husband, actor Geoffrey Arend. The pair have been married for 10 years. They have reportedly been separated for eight months, as their separation date was listed as April 2019 in court documents for their divorce. According to the papers, Hendricks intends to return to using her last name. She is asking that neither party be awarded spousal support and that both pay their attorneys' fees separately.

They previously announced their separation through an Instagram post in October, sometime after they began living apart. In the public announcement of their plan to divorce, the actors said that they planned to continue raising their dogs and sharing time with them. The couple does not have children, and they were previously quoted as saying that they did not plan to have children and instead wanted to focus on their animals. Their divorce comes quickly on the heels of their tenth wedding anniversary, as they were married on Oct. 11, 2009.

How collaborative divorce removes some stress

Few things can cause as much stress and contention as a divorce. Additionally, divorce can be one of the most financially devastating processes that a person can go through. Illinois residents may be interested in learning about a new approach to divorce that some couples are using to make the process easier. It is called collaborative divorce.

A collaborative divorce involves bringing in multiple professionals. Each spouse will retain a lawyer, and those two lawyers will determine other professionals to bring onto the team, possibly including financial or mental health professionals. The goal is to educate the couple on issues that they are experiencing, provide mediation and then help them to reach an agreement. The team works together in order to draw up an agreement that is fair for both spouses.

Factors to consider when thinking about divorce mediation

A divorced parent in Illinois may be at a loss for what to do when their ex-spouse says that they want to meet with a child custody mediator. Understanding what mediation is and what a mediator does are important in these situations.

Mediation is a way of handling a legal dispute using a professional mediator. The mediator is a neutral third-party who helps make it easier for both parties to talk to each other. In the realm of family law, a mediator may help parents come up with child custody arrangements that both parties can accept. They may discuss things like visitation, child support, parenting time and more.

Divorce often takes a heavy financial toll on women

Going through a divorce often leaves working women in Illinois and around the country in precarious financial situations. When researchers from the London School of Economics looked into the effect that ending a marriage has on how much spouses earn, they discovered that working wives saw their incomes drop by about 20% following a divorce. Men, on the other hand, brought home approximately 30% more after their divorces were finalized.

Figures like this contribute to poverty rates among divorced women that are three times higher than the rates among men who have divorced. Women also have longer life expectancies than men, which means they must be even more frugal than their former husbands during their retirement years. This is why divorcing wives should approach property division and spousal support negotiations pragmatically and prepare for them thoroughly.

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