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McHenry County Family Law Blog

How is Facebook changing divorce?

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Many, if not most, residents in Illinois have Facebook accounts. This social network site has changed the face of divorce. How? In two main ways: by setting the groundwork for a divorce and as a rich source of evidence during the divorce. This post will focus on the second aspect: evidence during the divorce.

How often is evidence found on Facebook used in divorce cases? Often. Indeed, a recent study by the American Association of Matrimony Lawyers showed that two-thirds of attorneys used Facebook as a key source of evidence during divorce.

Griffin divorce flares up

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As a general rule, Illinois couples get married because they love each other. And they get divorced because they no longer do or, worse, they can no longer stand each other's company. That is hardly a recipe for a smooth, unemotional divorce process.

Just ask Ken Griffin and his wife. Griffin, the billionaire CEO of Citadel, is going through a complicated divorce involving children, a challenged prenuptial agreement and claims for more than $10 million in child support per year.

Not all debt is the same during a divorce

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Divorce is a time of transition. A couple goes from a "we" to a "me." And, in the process, they need to separate their lives. One of the biggest items that must be disentangled is the finances. Doing so gets more complicated the more assets a couple has and the longer they have been together.

The first step in divorce is sorting through finances is to identify all assets and debts. That can be a challenge. Assets get hidden and debts can too. But that's a topic for a separate post.

There are many ways to collect back child support in Illinois

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Child support must be paid -- even when it is hard to come up with the money. Failure to do so hurts not only the child, but the parent failing to pay, because of the penalties the state of Illinois will impose.

The process often starts small. For example, the parents may try to resolve the matter on their own or the parent who cannot meet their child-support obligation may ask the court that issued the child-support order to lower the parent's obligation. The court may agree to do so if the amount is no longer in line with the parent's income (perhaps because the parent lost his or her job or there is another change in financial situation).

What does Illinois law say about property division?

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Our readers who are familiar with previous posts here most likely know a lot about property division. They have heard about terms like "marital property" and "non-marital property." And readers can make sensible guesses about what each term means. But how does Illinois law define those terms? And what effect do those definitions have on couples going through the divorce process?

Marital property is a catch-all term covering almost all property acquired during marriage, regardless of which spouse acquired it. Did one spouse buy a car for themselves? That's marital property. Did the other spouse buy a set of golf clubs? That's marital property too.

We help Illinoisans focus on the future

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For many Illinoisans going through a divorce, it can be easy to focus on the past. It can be easy to think about the happy first act and the less happy second act. But Illinoisans should not mire in the muck of what went wrong and how they were wronged. Instead, they should do the exact opposite -- they should have a laser focus on the future.

We can help with that. We have the experience and expertise to help you plan for the future, to predict pitfalls and their solutions before they become a reality. We can help your family and you move forward.

What are child custody and visitation and how do they differ?

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Many Illinois residents do not understand the child custody process and how time with a child is allotted. That's no surprise -- the process and the terminology can be misleading.

The first thing to know is that when it comes to how much time each parent can spend with their child or children, custody is not the only consideration; visitation is too. Child custody represents who the child will live with; visitation addresses how much time the non-custodial parent will have to visit with the child.

Ludacris marriage legit or child-custody ruse?

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Many Illinoisans know Ludacris for his rapping and acting. But a few also know him for his recent spate of highly public child-custody and child-support battles with his former girlfriend over their child. Many of those battles have been ugly, leaving the rapper's reputation in tatters as a deadbeat dad. Now Ludacris finds himself under attack again, this time for getting married.

That may seem strange, but so too was how Ludacris got married. He got engaged and married on the same day. Why the haste? Reports did not say, but his former flame offered a theory: Ludacris wants to use the marriage to take back custody of his child. According to his ex, he will wave his marriage in front of the court and then compare it to his ex - who is a single mother - as part of an argument that he should get the child, not her.

Five tips for unwinding finances during a divorce

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In even the friendliest of divorces, unwinding a relationship can be tough. It is not always as simple as parting ways. The couple will still need to catalogue and then decide on how to split their assets and debts. The greater the finances involved, the more work it will likely take to wrap up the process. To simplify the asset division process in a divorce, Illinoisans may want to consider the following post. While this is not a substitute for legal advice, it could prove helpful to those with questions on how to handle property division.

First, rethink your budget. And when doing it, be honest. Post-divorce life will likely cost more. During marriage, people can pool certain costs like housing. After marriage, each person has to pay for their own housing. These newfound expenses can add up.

Clint Eastwood finalizes divorce

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The holidays can be a tough time for those whose marriage has come to an end. All the holiday parties and family get-togethers offer repeated reminders of the split. But divorces happen when they must. Take, for instance, Clint Eastwood's divorce. It was recently finalized.

Eastwood and his wife had been married 18 years. They had one daughter together, also 18. The couple had shot a short-lived reality series, "Mrs. Eastwood & Company." In the summer of 2013, the couple separated.