Family law issues come in all shapes and sizes, and they often dovetail with other areas of the law. An interesting case came up in another state that showed how estate planning and family law can come together. The case involves three sisters and a secret marriage.
So much changes when a marriage ends. It isn't just the emotional relationship that changes -- it's the financial relationship, the parent-parent and parent-child relationships, the social relationships that come with being part of a couple. For both women and men a divorce can mean an unexpected -- and unprepared for -- return to the workforce. Whether change for the better or for the worse, divorce means change.
We aren't aware of anything like this scheduled in Lake County. It could be just a blip on the radar, a passing fad, the "one day you're in, and the next day you're out" phenomenon of conventions. Still, while critics complain that it sends the wrong message, attendees at the Divorce Expo were excited about the opportunity to network and to learn more about the legal and financial issues that come with divorce.
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.
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.
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.
A judge handed down a decision this week that settles the argument -- for now -- between four Catholic dioceses and the Illinois Department of Child and Family Services. We have followed the case since early June, when a handful of dioceses objected to Catholic Charities providing adoption and foster care services to gay couples who have entered into a civil union.
As Illinois nears the two-month mark under the Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act, other states have taken up the same-sex union debate. The argument has long simmered at the federal level, too, and a recently proposed Senate bill challenges the Defense of Marriage Act (DoMA) from a slightly different angle.
Court-ordered child support payments are necessary to help the custodial parent care and raise the couple's children. If a parent fails to pay their court-ordered child support payments, the custodial parent can petition the court to enforce the child support award.
The Department of Healthcare and Family Services Child Support Program provides all Illinois residents with child support services. These services allow custodial parents to legally establish paternity, locate the other parent, acquire health insurance for the child or children and collect payments on an established court order.