Tuesday, December 11, 2012

We are moving

We are moving!!
Here is our new contact information effective 12/18/2012:

Chicago, IL Office
205 W. Randolph Street
Suite 1240
Chicago, Illinois 60606
Ph. 312-346-7400
Fax 312-346-7401

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Property division case

Here are the results of a recent appellate decision in Illinois about property division in divorce.

In re: the Marriage of Oden , No. 4-08-0687 (4th Dist. Sept. 21, 2009) POPE (Calhoun Co.) Affirmed.

The trial court did not abuse its discretion when it awarded the husband 52% of bank account which contained proceeds from husband's personal injury settlement. The court said the trial court's review of relevant factors was proper for the court to arrive at "just distribution"; here, 30-year marriage, including 20 years after injury, and settlement was paid jointly to parties 15 years prior to dissolution.

Monday, March 9, 2009

New Illinois House bill regarding presumptions under Section 602 & 607 & 609

Marriage Act presumptions
House Bill 3904 (Connelly, R-Lisle) creates a new presumption in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act in three places.

The current law in Sec. 602 (best interest) states that there is a presumption that maximum involvement of both parents is in the best interest of the child unless there is an occurrence of ongoing abuse. This elaborates and widens the presumption to include "a history of abuse or a significant incident of abuse."

If it is ruled that any any of these instances of abuse has occurred, a presumption against joint custody arises, which the defending party can present evidence of sufficient steps taken to minimize the potential for abuse of the custodial parent or minor child.

The new law would create the same presumptions in the visitation section (Sec. 607) and removal section (Sec. 609). Should the court rule in any of these matters, the burden falls on the abusive parent in a removal proceeding. If the removal is sought, and granted, the court is prohibited from requiring the custodial parent to provide an address or telephone number to the noncustodial parent, but may designate an alternative manner of contact that does not give the abusive parent a means of directly contacting the custodial parent. Temporary removal can also be allowed by the state without having to give information, if that information could create a serious risk of substantial harm to the removing party.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

IRA distributions is income for child support purposes

In re Marriage of Eberhardt, No. 1-07-0135 & 1-07-2142, Cons. (December 12, 2008) 6th div. (Cahill) Affirmed in part, reversed in part, remanded.
Trial court correctly concluded that there is no bar to treating distributions from IRA accounts, distributed to husband as property in dissolution of marriage proceeding, as income for purposes of child support; and trial court did not abuse its discretion when it denied father's petition to modify his child support obligation. Further, trial court did not err when it denied husband's claim that personal funds held in bank accounts garnished by former wife are exempt. However, trial court erred when it awarded former wife's petition for attorney's fees without affording former husband evidentiary hearing which he requested.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Chicago Divorce attorney offices in Chicago, Illinois area

With the coming new year, we anticipate a surge in business. After all, holiday stress piles up, people will make New Year's resolutions to get their affairs in order, not to mention tax refund time as well.

I wanted to announce the opening of our new Joliet office location.
16 W. Van Buren, Suite 303, Joliet, IL 6043, which is just down from the Will County Courtroom. We offer free consultations, so don't hesitate to contact us for a free legal evaluation.

Our other office locations:

20 E. Jackson Blvd. Suite 850 Chicago, IL

10540 S. Western Ave Suite 402 Chicago, IL

2025 S. Arlington Heights Rd. Ste. 113 Arlington Heights, IL 60005

3333 W. Warrenville, Rd. Suite 200, Naperville, IL 60532

228 N. Genesee St. Suite 205, Waukegan, IL 60085

16 W. Van Buren, Suite 303, Joliet, IL 60432

Friday, December 12, 2008

Request to admit in divorce case- timing is everything

As seen below, in divorce proceedings, you must file documents, answers, responses timely, or else have a really good excuse why you didn't

In re Marriage of Holtaus, No. 2-07-0562 (November 17, 2008) DuPage County (Zenoff) Reversed and remanded.
Because wife has failed to demonstrate that she had any good cause for serving response to request to admit two days late, and because lack of prejudice to husband in dissolution of marriage proceeding is not sufficient, trial court did not abuse its discretion when it struck her untimely response. Further, the trial court's refusal to treat the payment of attorney's fees as advances on the distribution of the marital estate, and skewing the property division in favor of the husband in order to adjust for the excess fees he incurred as the result of the wife's behavior during the proceeding, fits within the dictates of Section 501(c-1)(2) of the IMDMA. However, the trial court erred when it selected the relevant date for the purpose of calculating the wife's dissipation at the date that the husband moved out of the marital home; because it is clear that the marriage was in the process of breaking down long before then.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Divorce debt and bankrutpcy filing

Here is a recent question I have been asked regarding bankruptcy and divorce decrees.

I'm due to be divorced on Tuesday, Thursday a credit card company is taking me to court for non-payment over the last year. I've been trying to get a divorce for 1 year, I have 2 children, had to move home with my parents and while I do have an income I still do not make enough money to pay the credit card debt created by my husband. I do not get child support (he's not working) and seldom sees the kids. What should I do about the court date on Thursday? I cannot afford another lawyer, I have to pay this one $100 monthly!! Should I have filed for bankruptcy before they set a court date for the judgment?


Your divorce decree will control who would be responsible for the debt. I assume it is a joint debt, or the decree is saying you will be responsible. Even though a bankruptcy may discharge your obligation, if the divorce decree says you will pay it, then you would still be responsible,despite the bankruptcy filing. If you are not responsible for the debt, bring your decree to court to show the judge.

Friday, December 5, 2008

maintenance and property division caselaw decisions

Divorce Illinois.
Here is an appeal of a divorce case decision. The court reviews the totality of the circumstances when awarding maintenance...income, assets, bonuses, retirements etc

In re: the Marriage of Walker, No. 4-07-0730 (November 26, 2008) Adams County (Myerscough) (COOK, special concurrence, TURNER, partial concurrence, partial dissent) Affirmed.
Trial court did not abuse its discretion when it awarded wife permanent maintenance after 26 year marriage with wife earning $37,000 and husband $204,000 by the court's calculation. Further, trial court was not required to believe husband's testimony that his 2006 bonus was extraordinary. In addition, trial court's award of property based on approximately 60/40 split, with the wife receiving mostly illiquid assets, is not error; and trial court had the authority to order the husband to maintain life insurance as security for his maintenance obligation.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Divorce: post dissolution injunction

Post Dissolution of marriage - divorce case.
Court can order pension to be turned over to ex-spouse, even if that person moved out of the country.

In re Marriage of Winter, No. 1-07-0619 (November 24, 2008) 1st div. (Garcia) Affirmed in part, reversed in part.
On interlocutory appeal, when former husband was located in England, where he is a permanent resident and beyond the contempt powers of the court, the trial court properly exercised its powers of equity when, after final judgment of dissolution of marriage awarding a portion of husband's teacher's pension to wife, husband refused to execute QUILDRO, and was receiving entire annuity, it imposed constructive trust on the pension payments, named husband's attorney as Trustee, enjoined Pension Fund from making any further payments directly to husband, and directed that husband's attorney receive payments and hold proceeds in his IOLTA account. However, it exceeded its authority when it directed that payments be made payable to attorney.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Are Sick Days Marital property in IL?

Civil - Dissolution Of Marriage/ Maintenance / Property Division 4th Dist.
In re Marriage of Abrell, No. 4-06-0974 (November 19, 2008) Sangamon County (Knecht) (MYERSCOUGH, partial concurrence, partial dissent) Affirmed in part, reversed in part, remanded.
Trial court erred when it concluded that accumulated sick and vacation days by husband, a State employee, are marital property subject to division in the dissolution of the parties' marriage. However, the trial court did not abuse its discretion when it denied husband's motion to reconsider its award of maintenance. Although trial court concluded that wife was essentially, unemployable in its memorandum of opinion, fact that she obtained full time employment, after proofs had closed in case but before judgment was entered, is not newly discovered evidence. The trial court, instead, properly considered the motion to reconsider as a motion to modify. However, it should have reduced the maintenance award based on the wife's newly acquired employment as of the date of filing the motion; although it was not required to reduce the maintenance by more than the $250 per month set by the court.