DuPage County divorce lawyer for financial issuesDivorces are difficult for some families, especially when it concerns financial matters. Splitting your marital finances during your divorce can be challenging, but it can also be disastrous for a couple. With two separate households comes increased financial obligations. Some people may be prepared for the increase, while others may struggle. While divorce in itself will not lower your credit score directly, certain actions and events that take place during the divorce can affect the score in negative ways. The following are a few situations that could potentially impact your credit score when going through a divorce:

You Have to Refinance Your Home

One of the biggest assets you may have to deal with in your divorce is the family home. If one spouse is planning on keeping the marital home, it is best to make sure the home is in that person’s name only. To do this, you may have to refinance your mortgage. Refinancing means you will have to go through a comprehensive credit inquiry, which can affect your credit score.

Your Spouse Still Has Access to Your Accounts

When you are married, most of your financial accounts are probably joint accounts, meaning you and your spouse both have ownership over them. When you get divorced, the process of splitting those accounts and/or taking your spouse’s name off of them can take a while. If your spouse still has access to accounts such as your credit card account, he or she can rack up charges, which can affect your credit score in a negative way.

You Cannot Pay Your Bills

One of the things that many divorced people cite as something they were not prepared for was losing an entire income. The kind of lifestyle you had during the marriage is not always the lifestyle you can afford after you part ways. Before your divorce is finalized, you should be sure to come up with a new budget using your sole income and make sure you can afford everything you are responsible for paying. Even just one missed payment on a credit card can result in a stain on your credit score.

Contact an Aurora, IL Divorce Attorney

Protecting your credit may not be high on your list of priorities during your divorce, but it is something you should keep in mind while you are making decisions about your future finances. A knowledgeable DuPage County divorce lawyer can not only provide guidance on certain financial matters but can also assist you with all other aspects of your divorce. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we can also help you deal with other divorce issues such as parenting time and decision-making responsibilities, spousal maintenance, child support, and property division. To schedule a consultation, call our office at 630-409-8184 today.






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DuPage County collaborative divorce attorneyIn recent years, divorcing by means of alternative dispute resolution has become rather popular. Both mediated and collaborative divorces have been the choice of many couples who are looking to get a divorce, rather than using the traditional litigation process. While each type of divorce has its advantages and disadvantages, collaborative divorce can be the answer to many people’s problems when it comes to settling issues and getting the results they want out of the divorce.

What Is a Collaborative Divorce?

The idea of collaborative divorce has existed since the 1980s, although it was only practiced in Illinois beginning around 2002. The Collaborative Process Act was signed into law in Illinois in 2018, and this formally recognized the collaborative process as a means to divorce. When a couple begins the collaborative process, they agree to cooperate in order to resolve the outstanding issues in their divorce. The collaborative divorce process takes place outside of the courtroom, in multiple private meetings. Avoiding litigation is one of the main goals of this process, and a collaborative divorce will often follow several methodical steps:

  1. Make a commitment to avoid litigation. In order to proceed with a collaborative divorce, you must first find a lawyer who is certified to practice collaborative law. That attorney will answer any questions you might have and prepare you for the collaborative divorce process. Once you and your ex-spouse have each found a collaborative divorce lawyer, you will sign an agreement stating that you will do everything in your power to settle any issues outside of the courtroom. This agreement will also state that you will provide each other with a full disclosure of financial information, and you will answer any queries or requests honestly and completely. If you are unable to complete the collaborative process successfully, your respective attorneys will withdraw from representing you, and each party will need to find new counsel to represent them in court.

  2. Pick your divorce team. One of the unique things about collaborative divorce is that you have a team of professionals who will work with you to resolve issues. You can choose specialists to help you come to agreements on certain issues. These specialists may include child therapists, divorce coaches, property appraisers, psychologists, mediators, or even estate planning lawyers.

  3. Begin your negotiations. Once you have assembled your team, you are ready to begin making decisions about issues. All of these decisions will be made during the meetings with your spouse and your attorneys. You are supposed to work together with your spouse to come up with arrangements on which you can both agree. Your team of specialists will be there to help you make your decisions based on their area of expertise, and your attorney will be there to help you understand the legal ramifications of your decisions.

  4. Finalize your divorce. When you and your spouse have come to an agreement on all of the marital issues that must be settled, your attorney will draft your agreements into legally binding documents that you and your spouse must both sign. Once those documents have both of your signatures on them, they may be filed with the court, and a hearing will be scheduled to finalize your divorce.

Contact a DuPage County Collaborative Divorce Attorney

Though collaborative divorces have been around since the 1980s, they are still somewhat uncommon. For some people, a collaborative divorce may or may not work, depending on their situation. At the Law Offices of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we can guide you through whichever type of divorce you choose, whether that be a collaborative divorce or a traditional litigated divorce. Let our knowledgeable Aurora, IL divorce lawyer help you work toward a peaceful future. Call our office today at 630-409-8184 to set up a consultation.






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DuPage County divorce lawyerDivorce is stressful for many reasons. Not only do you have various emotions running through your head, but you also have to deal with the financial aspect of the divorce. It has been estimated that a typical divorce can cost anywhere from $8,500 up to $100,000. The actual cost of your divorce will depend on a variety of factors, with some of the most influential factors being where you live, whether or not you have children, and your attorney’s hourly rate. With a price tag of at least a couple thousand dollars, it is not uncommon for some couples to have sticker shock when it comes to paying for their divorce. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to reduce the cost of your Illinois divorce.

Figure Out Which Process You Want to Use

Before you even begin, you should know which type of divorce you want to use. Contrary to what many people may believe, traditional litigation is not the only way to get a divorce. You can also choose to go with a mediated divorce or a collaborative divorce. Each method of divorce has its advantages and disadvantages, but depending on your situation, a mediated or collaborative divorce may be able to save you both time and money.

Be Prepared With Organized Financial Records

Before you meet with your attorney to begin dividing your marital property, you should be sure you have all of your financial records organized and ready to go. Make sure your records are in order so your legal team can better understand your financial picture. Organizing your records yourself before a meeting saves you precious time for more important matters.

Be Realistic

Though it can be rather difficult for some people, you have to remember that you are not going to get everything you want in the divorce. Having realistic expectations can help you to prioritize your desires and pick and choose your battles. Divorces that are more conflicted tend to also be more expensive.

Contact an Aurora, IL Divorce Lawyer

Divorce is stressful enough; you do not need the cost of your divorce to be another factor adding to your anxiety. Hiring a knowledgeable DuPage County divorce attorney can help reduce the expense of your divorce. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we have the experience to help you finalize your divorce in a timely manner, saving you both time and money. Call our office today at 630-409-8184 to schedule a consultation.





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Aurora, IL family law attorneyThere is no one definition that is used when you talk about the “best interests of the child” during divorce cases. What may be right for one child is not always right for another child. Illinois courts understand this, which is why when it comes to child-related issues, a variety of factors are used to determine the best course of action. During divorce cases, decisions must be made about parenting time and the allocation of parental responsibilities, which are both child-centered issues. The main goal of the courts is to ensure that the child’s safety and overall well-being is placed at the top of the list of priorities.

Factors Used in Deciding the Child’s Well-Being

In many Illinois divorce cases, parents can lose sight of what is truly best for their child. This is when a judge may step in and help parents decide certain issues. Each divorce, family, situation, and child is unique. When judges are making these decisions, they base their determinations on the child’s age and needs, along with these factors:

  • The physical safety and well-being of the child, including the child’s access to food, shelter, clothing, and healthcare

  • The development of the child’s identity

  • The child’s background, including familial, cultural, and religious ties

  • The child’s sense of security and familiarity

  • Where the child feels loved and valued

  • The wishes of the child and his or her long-term goals

  • The ties the child may have to the community, including the child’s friends, church, and school

  • The child’s need for permanence, including stability and continuing relationships with his or her parents, siblings, and other relatives

  • The unique situation of the child and his or her family

  • The preferences of each parent

Contact a DuPage County Divorce Lawyer

It is not uncommon for a divorce to be contested or combative. When this happens, parents may lose sight of what is most important in the divorce: the well-being of their child. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we can help you throughout your divorce, including when it comes to making important decisions regarding child-related issues such as the allocation of parental responsibilities parenting time. Let our compassionate Aurora, IL family law attorneys guide you and your family through this tough transition. Call our office today at 630-409-8184 to schedule a consultation.




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