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Wheaton Family And Criminal Law Blog

Coping with Christmas after your split with your spouse

After a split with your spouse, the first Christmas holiday season can be rough. The saccharine nature of the Hallmark movies may make you queasy to your stomach, and you may even feel a little snarky about all those couples in the holiday ads surprising each other with elaborate gifts.

It's okay. You've been through a big change, and you need time to adjust. In the meantime, here are some ways to make coping easier:

Considering relocating with your child? Here's what to consider

Lots of people think about relocating after they get divorced. It can be refreshing and rather freeing to start over in a new place, around new people, when you've been stuck in an unhappy place for a long time.

When you're a parent with primary or shared custody of your child, however, relocating isn't easy. What you may be permitted to do -- and where you may be permitted to move -- will ultimately depend on what the court sees as the best interests of your child.

Can you stay on your spouse's insurance after a divorce?

One of the biggest expenses of the modern era is your health insurance coverage. Naturally, if you're on your spouse's employer-provided insurance, you're concerned about what will happen if you end up divorced.

You may be able to stay on your ex-spouse's insurance after divorce, at least for a while -- although your ex-spouse will not be responsible for your premium. The Illinois Spousal Continuation Coverage law says that if you are under 55 years of age, you may be entitled to remain covered for two full years after your divorce. If you are over 55 years of age, you may be entitled to coverage until you become eligible for Medicare.

How do you know when to give up on child custody mediation?

Your marital relationship is over. You and your future former spouse may agree on this point and that you don't want your children to suffer unnecessarily because of it. For this reason, you and the other parent make the choice to try to work out your custody agreement and parenting plan without going to court.

After all, you have heard numerous times that avoiding a contentious custody battle is better for your children -- and you. So, you embark on a quest to resolve these issues through mediation. However, as you get into it, your gut tells you that something isn't right.

Can you stay on your spouse's insurance during a divorce?

The financial ramifications of a divorce are often complicated. You and your spouse have to go through what can seem like an agonizingly slow process of breaking apart all your financial ties together. You need separate bank accounts, credit cards and eventually separate places to live.

But what about insurance? If you've been covered on your spouse's employer-based insurance, here's what you need to know:

You can't afford it: How a DUI can affect a custody battle

Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol is a serious problem for anybody -- but the consequences of a charge or conviction for folks going through a custody battle can be especially dire.

In fact, as tempting as it might be to throw caution to the wind and blow off some steam during a pub crawl with your best friends during your divorce, you really can't afford to make the kind of mistake that ends in criminal charges. Here's why:

No-contact orders vs. orders of protection in Illinois

Stalking, threats and acts of violence can start out of nowhere and happen to anyone. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 14 out of every 1,000 adults will experience some form of stalking every year. Three-quarters of all stalking victims know their tormentor in some way or another.

If you're being harassed, threatened with violence or outright stalked by someone, you may need either an order of protection or a stalking no-contact order. While similar in function, there are some distinct differences between the two.

How do kids react to a parent's divorce?

Divorce can be rough -- particularly if you're a parent. You know that the end of your marriage is going to affect your children as much as it affects you.

The more conscious you are of the emotional impact of your divorce on the kids, the easier it will be to develop strategies that you can use to reassure them. Here are the common problems divorced parents encounter by age:

Can you date while getting a divorce?

A lot of clients want to know if they can date even though their divorce isn't final. It's human nature to want to reach out to other people and find a lifelong companion, so the desire to find someone new when your old relationship is clearly over is certainly understandable.

As the saying goes, you certainly can date while you're getting a divorce, but should you? Frankly, you're better off waiting. Here's why:

Are you making these divorce mistakes?

Do you want a reasonably peaceful divorce? It is possible to have -- but only if you take care to avoid certain critical blunders.

Knowledge is power. If you recognize the mistakes that you're making (or about to make), you can take steps to avert a disaster. Do any of these common mistakes sound familiar to you?

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