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Wakenight & Associates, P.C.

707 N. York Street, Suite 201, Elmhurst, IL 60126

DuPage County | 630-852-9700

Mokena | 815-727-6144   Oak Park | 708-848-3159

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It's normal for separating couples to experience some degree of conflict during divorce proceedings, particularly when it comes to the equitable distribution of assets. Because Illinois doesn't have any laws that require anequal distribution of assets, spouses may find themselves standing before a judge who is responsible for deciding how their marital property should be dividedfairly. In this case, one does not equal the other.

In high-asset divorce s, some spouses might be tempted to hide assets, and will go to extreme lengths to protect them from the distribution process.For example, one spouse may try to hide financial assets in a secret account or transfer real estate property to a relative. this is incredibly inadvisable, as guilty parties are usually caught and punished with severe legal and financial penalties.

During the discovery phase of your divorce , spouses must be financially transparent and honestly disclose any relevant assets and properties - this includes both marital and separate properties. this is so important that spouses are required to testify under oath that they are providing all the necessary financial information and documentation.


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Each marriage is defined by unique family and financial dynamics that must be taken into account during divorce determinations. In certain cases, the court may award a lower-earning spouse alimony to make the transition to single life (and a single income) easier. In theory, alimony is to provide financial assistance while a spouse pursues new job or educational opportunities. It's entirely up to the spouses or the court to decide how long alimony payments should last.

Typically, a judge thoroughly reviews the financial situations of both spouses before making a final determination. The spousal support amount is calculated per state laws and can be paid in monthly installments ora lump sum payment. However, alimony can be terminated or modified under certain conditions, and to the benefits of both spouses.

Terminations and modifications can be requested under the following conditions:


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If you and your spouse are seriously considering a divorce , there may beno time like the present to file your petition and complete the process.As 2018 crawls to a close, we are getting closer and closer to the last tax season that provides certain tax benefits to divorce d couples.

the Trump Administration passed the tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) in December 2017, and the legislative changes will finally go into effect on December 31, 2018. The TCJA is making significant changes to the individual income tax, and these changes include reforms to alimony, dependent deductions, and the child tax credit. These are all tax issues that may affect your post-divorce life.


the purpose of spousal support is to provide financial aid to a lower-earning spouse who may find it difficult to live on a single income after a divorce .Before the TCJA, alimony payments were tax deductible for the paying spouse and judged as taxable income for the receiving spouse. In 2019, this standard will no longer apply to any new spousal support orders or alimony modifications. Depending on your personal circumstances, this may be one positive change included in this sweeping tax reform.


Americans collectively owe nearly $1.5 trillion in student loan debts.Statistically, this means that 1 out of every 4 adults nationwide are currently part of a college debt repayment plan. The standard federal repayment plan takes at least 10 years to complete, and it's not uncommon for people with student loan debts to marry and divorce with in that same time period. But what happens to student loan debts during a divorce ?

Debt division is a vital aspect of the divorce process. Typically, only debts incurred during the marriage are included in the marital estate. Illinois is an equitable distribution state, which means that debt is divided “fairly” and per the will of the court. Fairly, however, does not mean “equally.” the court must evaluate several factors before determining if one spouse's student loan debts should be part of the distributable marital estate.

the court makes its determination based on the following:


Before the divorce process can be finalized, all financial matters relating to spousal maintenance, or “alimony, ” must be agreed upon by both spouses or determined by the court. The purpose of alimony is to offer financial support to a lower earning spouse as they adapt to being single and self-sufficient. Typically, alimony is paid in monthly installments to benefit the financial situations of both former spouses.However, the paying spouse or the court can decide that submitting a lump sum amount is an acceptable alternative to an on-going payment plan.

Lump sum payment options include:

  • Cash
  • Check
  • Marital property division

By choosing to pay through marital property division, the paying spouse essentially agrees to forfeit a portion of the assets there are entitled to in lieu of paying alimony.





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