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Wakenight & Associates, P.C.

9405 Bormet Drive, Suite 7, Mokena, IL 60448

Mokena | 815-727-6144

DuPage County | 630-852-9700   Oak Park | 708-848-3159

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 Mokena divorce attorney for children’s college expensesEvery parent only wants what is best for their child. For parents, divorce can be incredibly complicated and stressful, since not only do the decisions made affect one’s own future, but they will affect children’s futures too. Divorce does not always come at the best time, and parents with teenage children may worry about the upcoming costs of their child’s higher education. Normally, child support payments only last until the child turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever comes later. A parent may worry about covering the costs of a child’s college education, and it is important to understand how Illinois law addresses these expenses.

Parental Contributions Toward College Expenses

Illinois courts understand how expensive college can be, and they recognize the importance of a college education for children’s success. Illinois law provides guidelines for how parents may be required to contribute toward children’s college expenses, which expenses are covered, and how they will be paid. Educational expenses must be incurred before the child turns 23, or, if good cause is shown, no later than the child’s 25th birthday. Contributions to educational expenses can be awarded out of the property and income of both parents and can be made payable directly to the student or to the school. Prior to awarding money toward the child’s education, the court may require the family to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

What Expenses Are Covered?

If the court decides that the parents are able to provide for some or all of the costs associated with the child’s education, the expenses will be allocated between the parents. Expenses that parents may be responsible for covering include:

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 New Lenox divorce lawyer for hidden assetsNo matter the reason you and your spouse are getting divorced, there is probably some sort of tension between the two of you, even if it is just a small amount. In divorces involving couples who have a lack of trust, it is not uncommon for the property division process to be long and contentious. When you begin the process of allocating your assets, you and your spouse will have to provide information about all of your assets and debts. Full disclosure is required, though it is not always given. If you suspect your spouse is hiding assets from you, you should begin the process of uncovering those assets right away. Here are a few ways you can look for hidden assets if you suspect your spouse is not being truthful:

Start With Tax Returns

The first place you should begin to look for hidden assets is in your spouse’s tax returns. Get copies of his or her tax returns from at least the last five years and examine them closely. Look at the sources of income that are listed, itemized deductions that were taken, capital gains and losses, and profits and losses from any businesses.

Check Bank Account Statements

Next, begin to examine your bank account statements from any financial institutions that you bank with. Look at both checking and savings accounts. You should be looking for any unusual deposits or withdrawals. Also, look for any canceled checks and who they are made payable to. You may be able to reveal the purchase of an investment or other property.

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 Mokena, IL divorce attorney for marital asset dissipation

Not all divorces are amicable. Sometimes, a divorce is very one-sided, meaning one spouse wants to get divorced while the other does not. Other times, both spouses agree that they want to get divorced, but they have ill feelings toward each other. In situations like this, a spouse may try to do whatever they can to hurt their former partner in any way. Sometimes, this manifests as keeping their spouse from receiving a fair share of the marital property. One common way this is done is by wasting marital assets, which is referred to as “dissipation.”

What Is Dissipation?

The Illinois Supreme Court defines dissipation as the “use of marital property for the sole benefit of one of the spouses for a purpose unrelated to the marriage at a time the marriage is undergoing an irretrievable breakdown.” This basically means that a spouse dissipates assets if they intend to deprive the other spouse of certain marital property by spending, destroying, or otherwise wasting marital property during a period in which the marriage was falling apart or during the divorce.

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 New Lenox divorce attorney for financial issues

Getting a divorce can be one of the hardest things you will ever do in your entire life. Most people know or can imagine how emotionally stressful a divorce can be, but they may not think about how other areas of their life will be affected. For many people, a divorce can also put a great deal of stress on their financial well-being. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to prepare your finances so they do not take as big of a hit during your divorce. Here are a few ways you can help keep a sound financial footing as you go about the process of ending your marriage:

2. Gather All of Your Financial Documentation

Before you even begin to do anything, you need to make sure you have documentation for all of your finances. This can be the most important step, because having documentation in one place can help you get a sense of your current financial picture, and it can also help you plan for success once you are divorced. You should make sure you have copies of documents such as:

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 Frankfort divorce lawyer for child issues

Divorce can be a very stressful and emotional time for everyone in the family, but it can be especially difficult for children. There is no way to predict exactly how your child will react to a divorce, but many children experience feelings of sadness, anger, shock, resentment, and even guilt when dealing with their parent’s divorce. Many of these feelings are normal emotions that the child will experience as they go through the grieving process. Though there is no way around these feelings, there are many things you can do to help your child learn how to adapt to their new circumstances. Here are a few ways you can help your child cope with your divorce:

  1. Be Prepared to Answer a Lot of Questions

Children are naturally curious, so it is only normal for them to have a lot of questions once you break the news of the divorce. Your child might ask you where they are going to live, if you or your spouse will be moving out, why you are getting a divorce, and if they will change schools, among other things. You should be prepared to answer these questions, and if you do not currently have an answer for these questions, be honest with your child and tell them you will let them know as soon as you can.

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