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Family law is a broad legal term, encompassing guardianship, divorce, paternity, voluntary acknowledgments of paternity, estate planning, child custody and other crucial issues that affect family relationships. Since family law is a broad legal field, family law attorneys will specialize in a specific area like divorce, while others will handle all family-related legal matters.
Since each state has its own adoption and marriage laws, the state controls almost all legal procedures and family laws. Interpreting family laws can be a hectic process. Most family legal matters should be handled by an experienced lawyer to offer a clear insight into the current regulations and rules for family law in the greater Chicagoland area.
Type of Cases Our Chicago Family Law Attorneys Handle
Each legal case is handled independently, especially when it comes to family law. Some cases may be simple and only need an attorney to assist you to draft paperwork required to complete your goals. Others can be hectic and time-consuming; especially a divorce case that involves unresolved parenting time and supports issues. That is why you need to hire a competent family law lawyer to handle your situation.
Child Support and Custody
Settlement agreements involving child custody or support mostly end up becoming contentious in divorce or parentage cases. A family law attorney in Chicago will give you an overview of the laws in Illinois regarding the allocation of parenting time; appropriate child support; daycare; medical coverage; and address educational expenses as well as maintenance if appropriate.
Illinois family law recognizes both legal and physical custody. Legal custody refers to the ability of a parent to make major decisions regarding the childlike religious upbringing and schooling, while physical custody revolves around who the child will live with. Illinois law looks to best interests standard in determining the allocation of parenting time. It is more common now for both parents to split parenting time with the child if they live in close proximity to each other; support is based on the number of nights the child spends with each parent and the parties’ relative incomes.
Divorce laws vary from one state to another. To get a divorce, courts require the parties to decide, if they can, the division of assets, child support, parenting time and spousal support. When parties file for divorce, each of them hires a competent lawyer to handle their case. When negotiating a divorce case, both parties work hard to reach a reasonable outcome. A good divorce lawyer in Chicago will have the expertise to explain the process of a divorce; how long it can expect to take; and the problems that could arise should the parties not be able to agree.
Sometimes partners will have reached an agreement even before they hire attorneys. Such cases are settled faster since they don’t pass through the trial phase. However, where both parties cannot reach an agreement about child custody or support, the case main ends up going to trial if mediation is unsuccessful.
Foster Care/ Adoption Cases
Adoption matters can be hectic based on the kind of adoption or foster care taking place. The case can be complex based on where the child was born and the current laws regarding adoption in Illinois. To make sure that the process goes smoothly, you should hire an experienced family law attorney.
Normally, the mother of the child initiates a paternity case to obtain child financial support from the father. A biological dad can also file a case as well. The court may require both parties to undergo DNA testing. Once parentage is established, the parties will be required to address the allocation of parenting time and financial and medical support issues for the child.
Divorcing partners as well as parents of children born outside of a marriage can use mediation lawyers to resolve their issues amicably. In mediating divorce cases, partners can hire a neutral third party to help in resolving their differences. Divorce mediators are normally family attorneys who have specialized in mediation training.
Estate planning revolves around deciding who will inherit personal items or property after a person dies. It all starts with drafting a living trust or will. Even where a clear will exists, some family members will always fight for the deceased’s property or personal items. Hiring an experienced family lawyer will help to solve such issues faster and smoothly.
Collaborative law is a new term used to define various types of dispute resolution outside the courts. It normally employs several problem-solving procedures and occurs in a neutral locality. This can help parties avoid battles in courts, and is always cheaper than a child custody or support trial.
Reasons Why You Need to Hire an Experienced Family Lawyer
Are you still considering whether or not to hire a family lawyer to handle your case? Consider the following issues:
Your Case Has Become Complicated
Sometimes you begin with a simple disagreement which turns out to be a complicated case afterward. For example, your partner might have changed his mind about child custody overnight despite your earlier agreement, or you are guessing that he might want to convince the judge that you are not fit to take care of the child overnight. These complications tell you that you need to engage a competent family attorney to represent you in court.
You Live in Different Regions
If your partner lives in a different state than yours; then jurisdictional issues may arise. Hiring an experienced lawyer who understands family law in Illinois will prove more helpful to winning your case.
Your spouse or former partner is preventing you from seeing the Kids
If your spouse or former partner is denying visits or limiting your contact with the kids, then you need to hire an experienced family lawyer to handle your case.
Contrary to the popular belief, you can resolve your family battles outside courts with the help of a good lawyer. Even a divorce case can be completed outside court. The factors surrounding your divorce case will determine whether you need to engage a family lawyer.
If the couples are unable to reach an agreement on the division of property, then hiring an experienced lawyer would be a perfect option. However, if they are willing to compromise their tough stances, then collaborative law can take its course.
Contact Our Family Law Attorneys
Many issues arise in families that force them to seek the services of a family lawyer. Some can involve child support, buying property or divorce, but the legal process will be faster when an attorney is involved. Family lawyers have the experience and knowledge that will help you win the case.
If you are seeking confident and compassionate legal representation, then you should talk to our family lawyers to achieve the best outcome of your case. Our attorneys are well versed with family law in Chicago and have won thousands of cases over the years, contact us today!