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Three Things To Consider In Your Chicago Divorce


For many people, the concept of divorce is a very scary thing. Physically splitting up from a spouse, dividing up accounts, properties, and cars, and hammering out parenting plans can all seem like daunting tasks. On top of that, thoughts about the actual paperwork and legal procedure of getting a divorce can cause quite a headache. However, while divorce is certainly a big life change, it does not have to be the end of a life. For those thinking about initiating a Chicago divorce or going through the Chicago divorce process, it is helpful to be aware of and consider these three key issues in Chicago divorces.

  1. Are Children Involved in the Marriage?

One of the most important considerations in a Chicago divorce is what happens if there are children involved in the marriage. Of course, in an amicable divorce where parties to the divorce agree on child custody and other matters related to children involved in the marriage, the issue might not be a contentious one. However, in many Chicago divorces, child custody is one of the most hotly contested issues, and parenting plans may ultimately have to be decided by a judge in court. Either way, if children are involved in a Chicago divorce, and the parties have not agreed on a parenting plan, parents seeking a divorce should consider key issues such as which parent the child should primarily physically live with and which parent should make the important decisions in the child’s life.

  1. Did One Person Make More Money than the Other During the Marriage?

Another consideration in a Chicago divorce is whether one person will be required to pay alimony, otherwise called spousal “maintenance” to the other party to the marriage. Alimony/maintenance may be ordered in the divorce if one party to the marriage would need monetary support to survive after the divorce, because that party lacks earnings and/or earning power. There are several different types of maintenance that are awarded under different circumstances, depending on the facts of the unique divorce. In terms of duration, alimony payments can range from temporary to permanent. Unless they agree to it, virtually no person is excited about sending an ex-spouse monthly checks for their living expenses, but the fact of the matter is that alimony is a real issue that may come up in a Chicago divorce. Accordingly, those seeking a Chicago divorce should consider whether they may be the payor or recipient of alimony payments post-divorce.

  1. What are the Assets and Properties in the Marriage?

Finally, a third key issue to consider in a Chicago divorce is what are the assets in the marriage and how should they be divided. Like child custody and alimony/maintenance, property division is something that can be agreed upon by the parties. If the issue of property division is not agreed upon, then a court will be the ultimate decider. There are a number of factors that a judge must consider when dividing property in a Chicago divorce. Importantly, issues such as infidelity and other “marital misconduct” are not part of the determination. Generally speaking, the more assets and property that are subject to a divorce, the more complicated, time consuming, and expensive a divorce will be, if the parties don’t agree on property division. Therefore, it is important for those seeking a Chicago divorce to consider what property is subject to the divorce, and how it might be divided.

Getting Help with a Chicago Divorce

One of the most powerful things a person can do when seeking a divorce in Chicago is to consult with an experienced Chicago divorce lawyer. An experienced Chicago divorce lawyer can walk a person through these three key considerations, and much more, and fight for that person’s rights and interests in the divorce proceedings. The experienced Chicago divorce lawyers at Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC, offer a confidential consultation to learn your side of the story and to see if they can help represent you in your Chicago divorce. Contact Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC, today to get started.

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