Divorce Lawyer in Bloomington IL
A good divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL understands that for many clients, going through the divorce process can be an emotional and frustrating experience. At Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols, we know that our clients may be overwhelmed when they come to us for counsel. For that reason, we are here for them even as we fully pursue justice on their behalf.
The Evolving Divorce Process
Divorce and other family law issues fall under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA). The IMDMA went through a major overhaul in 2016, with significant changes in areas such as grounds for divorce, spousal maintenance, child custody, and child support. There are additional changes that Illinois lawmakers have implemented that have yet to go into effect.
All these changes mean that it’s critical to retain the services of a divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL who is highly knowledgeable regarding current and impending Illinois family law statutes and regulations. Some couples who are in the process of legally separating or divorcing do not even consider retaining a divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL and represent themselves instead. Attempting to represent yourself can result in costly delays in your case, or losing it entirely, because of complex legal rules and regulations. This includes filing and responding to motions and other legal matters.
For example, the courts require stringent deadlines in how long litigants have for responding to motions filed by the other party. A skilled Bloomington divorce lawyer knows that a missed deadline could cost a person their chance at their share of the marital estate or – even more devastating – custody of their children.
At Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols, each divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL stays up-to-date on the ever-evolving changes in Illinois family and divorce legislation.
How May a Bloomington Divorce Lawyer Help Me?
Just as every marriage is different, so is every divorce. There will be decisions that you and your spouse may need to make that other couples did not have to address. Some of the critical family law issues that a divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL may assist you with include:
1. Allocation of parental responsibilities and Parenting time
Allocation of family time was previously referred to as child custody and parenting time was previously referred to as visitation. The changes were made during last year’s IMDMA overhaul to make these two important issues more “family-friendly.”
In deciding allocation of parental responsibilities, there are four different areas where one parent will be responsible for the decision-making. The goal is to have both parents discuss and jointly agree on these four areas of a child’s life, however, if for some reason, they cannot come to an agreement, then the parent who is “allocated” that area makes the final decision. The four areas are:
- Extra-curricular activities.
Separate from the parental responsibilities is the parenting time. It is the goal of the courts to come up with a schedule they can both agree on, however, if they are unable to do this, then the court will do it for them.
Ideally, both parents will agree on both how responsibilities and parenting time should be divided and come up with one parenting plan. If they are unable to do so, then each parent can have their divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL draft separate parenting plans and the court will make the final decision.
2. Child Support
Beginning in July 2017, Illinois is implementing a new way to determine child support. Under the current law, child support is determined using the net income of the parent paying support, along with how many children he or she is paying for. The new law uses the income share model.
A divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL understands that this model says that a child support should be the same amount that would have been allotted to the child if the parents were living together. Under this approach, the courts will use tables which will be provided by the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services to determine the amount. The new law also considers the number of hours of parenting time the paying parent has, something the old law does not do.
3. Marital Estate Issues
When a couple is ending their marriage, there are also serious financial decisions that need to be made. These issues include:
- Asset division
- Property division
- Division of family business
- Health insurance coverage
- Allocation of marital debt
- Spousal maintenance (also referred to as spousal support or alimony)
4. Legal Separation vs. Divorce
Some couples who are having marital problems may decide not to file for divorce immediately and instead decide they want a legal separation. They may do this to see if they can work things out, or perhaps they are avoiding a divorce for religious reasons.
- A legal separation can address similar issues as a divorce, such as child custody and financial support.
- A legal separation can also determine which spouse will live in the family home, and whether there will be any spousal support paid by either party.
If you are not sure which would be the right choice for you — divorce or legal separation — a divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL can discuss your options with you.
Contact a Bloomington Divorce Lawyer
If you are considering ending your marriage, there are certain steps you may want to take to ensure you receive the best possible divorce settlement that you and your children deserve. A dedicated divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL can discuss what those steps are, and what the best ways are to complete those steps. Knowing what documents and records you should make sure you obtain beforehand may help in ensuring a fair distribution of your marital estate.
Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols Attorneys at Law have been advocating for clients in the Bloomington area for more than 80 years and are available to discuss your situation during a complimentary case evaluation.
To schedule an appointment with a divorce lawyer in Bloomington IL, contact us today 309-467-3213 or fill out a contact form from our website.
“Michael was a huge help to me with my issues. I feel as if he genuinely cared for me as a client.”