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What is Mediation?

Schaumburg Attorney Mediators for Family Law Issues

Mediation is a form of dispute resolution that is used by many couples going through a divorce or child custody proceedings. The process involves a neutral, third-party mediator who is responsible for facilitating discussion between the parties and guiding them to a workable agreement. Family law mediation can help couples avoid stressful and time-consuming courtroom litigation.

While mediation is often utilized in many other areas of the law, it can be especially helpful for families facing divorce and parental responsibilities concerns. In fact, mediation may even be required in some cases that involve children and disputes over custody and parenting time.

Mediation is a confidential, cooperative method of alternative dispute resolution that allows both parties to play a significant role in developing an agreement. Unlike a judge, the mediator cannot make binding decisions, and while the mediator may be an attorney, he or she does not provide legal advice to either party. Instead, the mediator’s job is to ensure that the parties address all of the issues that need to be resolved using mediation skills and training. In most situations, mediation offers significant cost savings and more convenient scheduling compared to traditional divorce and family law litigation.

Trained Schaumburg Divorce Mediators

At Anderson & Associates, P.C., we have extensive experience in all aspects of divorce mediation. Several of our attorneys are trained mediators who are equipped to help your family minimize the stress and anxiety of family law disputes. We have also represented countless clients who have successfully utilized mediation to build a foundation for their families’ future.

Schedule a Free Consultation

While mediation may provide many substantial benefits compared to litigation, the process is not appropriate for every situation. To learn more about mediation or other types of alternative dispute resolution, contact our office. Call 847-995-9999 to schedule a free initial consultation with Anderson & Associates, P.C. today. With four offices throughout the region, we serve clients in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Orland Park, and Chicago.

I Have Been Named the Executor of a Will; Now What?

Fiduciary Responsibility and Estate Administration Lawyers in Schaumburg, IL

If you have been named the executor of a person’s estate in his or her will, you are responsible for carrying out the directives contained in the will. Other duties include closing the decedent’s accounts, paying off debts, managing assets, locating heirs, and distributing the decedent’s property in accordance with the will’s provisions.

The role of executor is an important one in administering a decedent’s estate. The executor is responsible for a wide range of duties including but not limited to:

  • Locating the will and any codicils;
  • Compiling a list of assets and debts;
  • Obtaining death certificates;
  • Securing the decedent’s property;
  • Identifying heirs, beneficiaries, and creditors;
  • Allocating property to each heir as directed; and
  • Presenting the will in Probate court.

The executor must also keep careful records of actions taken and expenditures incurred on behalf of the estate. If you do not feel that you are capable of or willing to carry out the responsibilities of an executor, you have the right to refuse to serve in the role. If you do agree to take on the duties of the executor, it is important to seek guidance from a qualified estate administration attorney.

Schaumburg Probate Attorneys

At Anderson & Associates, P.C., we understand that it can be overwhelming to be named the executor of someone’s estate. It is especially challenging when the decedent is a close family member or loved one, as grief and other emotions can complicate the situation. Our experienced lawyers will work closely with you in managing the decedent’s estate and navigating the often difficult process of Probate. We can also assist you in dealing with any challenges that may arise regarding the will or any other element of the decedent’s estate plan.

To learn more about estate administration in Illinois, contact our office. Call 847-995-9999 to schedule a free consultation at any of the four locations of Anderson & Associates, P.C. We serve clients in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Orland Park, Chicago, and the surrounding areas.

Do I Still Have to Pay Maintenance If My Spouse Remarried?

Terminating Spousal Support Orders in Illinois

An obligation to pay maintenance, also known as alimony, will usually be terminated when the receiving spouse gets remarried. If you are making spousal support payments and your spouse remarries or moves in with a new partner on a resident, continuing conjugal basis, an experienced family law attorney can help you terminate your maintenance order.

Following your divorce, you may have been ordered to make maintenance payments to your ex-spouse. Maintenance—which is sometimes called spousal support or alimony—is intended to help your former partner maintain a reasonable standard of living after your divorce. Under Illinois law, maintenance orders may last for a certain number of years, or they may be permanent, depending on how long you were married. Unless you have an agreement that states otherwise, however, your obligation to pay maintenance can be terminated in specific situations.

According to the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, an obligation to make maintenance payments ends with the death of either spouse, the remarriage of the receiving spouse, or if the receiving spouse “cohabits with another person on a resident, continuing conjugal basis.” The law also specifies that your obligation will end on the date of the remarriage or the date on which the court finds that the cohabitation began. You may also be entitled to reimbursement for any payments made after that date. It is important to note that the same rules do not apply for child support payments, as your ex-spouse’s marital status has no bearing on your child support obligations—at least not in and of itself.

Protecting Your Rights in Schaumburg

At Anderson & Associates, P.C., we understand that while it is easy to find evidence of your spouse’s remarriage, proving that he or she is cohabiting with another person on a resident, continuing conjugal basis is often more difficult. There are many factors that must be considered, and we are prepared to help you build a case for terminating your maintenance obligations.

To learn more about your options, contact our office for a free consultation. Call 847-995-9999 to schedule an appointment at any of our four convenient locations.

Can I Ask My Ex-Spouse to Pay for My Children’s College?

Illinois Family Law Attorneys for College Expenses in Divorce and Paternity Cases

Under Illinois law, a court may order one or both parents to contribute toward the college expenses of the couple’s children. These expenses include:

  • Tuition costs;
  • Room and board;
  • Books and supplies;
  • School fees; and
  • Transportation.

Each parent may also be required to complete financial aid forms, including the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

A family court in Illinois has the authority to require either or both parents to help pay for their child’s college education. Before doing so, the court must take into account each parent’s financial resources and needs, the child’s resources and needs, and the child’s academic performance. The eligibility of the child and parents for financial aid may also factor into the court’s decision. Illinois law limits the amount of tuition, fees, room and board to the amount an in-state student would pay at the University of Illinois at Champaign - Urbana.

Family Lawyers Helping Parents Protect Their Rights

The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act provides that paying for college, in most cases, is handled as a financial consideration of a divorce rather than a right belonging to the child. This means that the request for help with college expenses must be made by one of the parents. It also means that if the issue of paying the child’s college was addressed in the divorce judgment, the matter may be effectively closed.

An experienced family law attorney at Anderson & Associates, P.C. can help you understand your rights and responsibilities regarding your child’s college expenses. We will review your divorce settlement, along with your relevant circumstances, to help you determine your options for moving forward. Call 847-995-9999 for a free initial consultation at any of our four convenient office locations.

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