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Divorce and family law includes a wide range of issues that are typically both emotional and complex. Family law matters range from dissolving marriages to child support claims. Divorce and family Lawyer Debbie Cohen provides individualized and compassionate attention to all your family law needs. She takes the time to fully understand your situation, provides an honest assessment of your options and fully advocates for you at every stage of the process.
Ms. Cohen drafts and negotiates prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, advocates for you in separations, contested and uncontested divorces, and defends your long-term emotional and financial needs in terms of property division, child support, and spousal maintenance. Dealing with any family law matter is challenging so finding the best family lawyer for you is critical. You must ensure that you are protected for the next chapter of your life. Ms. Cohen fights to protect your best interests and applies her experience and care, skill and judgment to all matters. Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen today to discuss your family law matters in a confidential and safe environment.
As of 2016, Illinois became a no-fault divorce state. This means that spouses who decide to terminate their marriages are no longer required to prove that one or the other was at fault for the marriage’s failure. Rather, the parties only need to demonstrate that “irreconcilable differences” have led to a permanent breakdown of the marriage. To meet the burden of “irreconcilable differences”, couples must live apart from one another for at least six months. Even after meeting the six month threshold, divorcing couples are still faced with complex issues such as spousal maintenance, property division, the handling of prior debts and if the parties have children, child support and parenting time.
If you and your spouse can resolve your divorce amicably, an uncontested divorce may be the correct option for you. An uncontested divorce is when neither party will be opposing any details of the dissolution of marriage. This is often a cost-saving method that allows couples to end their marriage amicably and efficiently. On the other hand, if you and your spouse are unable to agree on most things, you may be facing a contested divorce. A contested divorce is an adversarial process that is oftentimes costly for both parties, time consuming and emotional for parents and kids. Dealing with any divorce is challenging so finding the right family lawyer for you is imperative to ensure that you are protected for the next chapter of your life. Divorce Attorney Debbie Cohen fights to protect your best interests and combines her experience with care, skill and compassion to all matters. Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen today to discuss your divorce in a confidential and safe environment.
Oftentimes, couples hit an uncertain time in their marriage and want to part ways. However, they may just need a time-out from the marriage or they may not be financially and/or emotionally prepared for the finality of a divorce. In these situations, they may elect to have a “legal separation”, which provides them with the same legal remedies afforded to couples who divorce while retaining the marriage itself. In this situation, the couples are allowed to live apart and have the capability to manage their own assets, debts and property. If the couple has children, the couple must go through the same legal processes to determine child visitation, child custody, child support and spousal maintenance. Legal separations are oftentimes a precursor to a divorce, but not all legal separations end in a divorce.
If you are questioning the future of your marriage and what options are available, contact Ms. Cohen to discuss the option of legal separation. She is compassionate and uses her care, skill and judgment when listening to your situation. Ms. Cohen provides honest and practical feedback. Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen today to discuss your legal separation issue in a confidential and safe environment.
Raising children is costly. Child support laws exist so that single parents can adequately provide for their children. Both parents must support their children regardless if they are married, separated or divorced. Although parents can enter into a child support agreement, the agreement must meet the guidelines set by Illinois law and receive court approval. Illinois has specific rules for calculating the financial responsibilities of single, separated, or divorced parents.
Prior to July 2017, Illinois courts used a "percentage based" formula for child support. However, in July 2017, Illinois changed its child support formula from a percentage based to an “income share model”. The updated formula mandates that both parents are responsible for their own share of raising their children. The "income shares model" considers both parents' incomes in addition to calculation of how much the parents would typically spend on their children if they would have remained living together with shared finances. However, there are times when the guideline levels of child support are not appropriate or where income and/or assets may be hidden by a spouse. Cohen Law has the experience and skills needed to help you with your child support matters. Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen today to discuss your child support issue in a confidential and safe environment.
Spousal maintenance or support, formerly referred to as alimony, is a payment that one spouse makes to the other during and/or after a divorce. It is important to recognize that spousal maintenance is not automatic and is not awarded in every divorce case. The court’s calculation to award spousal maintenance is based on a wide range of factors that includes the income, needs, and earning potential of each party, the length of the marriage, and any written agreement between the parties. Depending on the particular facts of your marriage, the length of spousal maintenance can vary from temporary maintenance to permanent maintenance. Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen today to discuss your spousal maintenance issue in a confidential and safe environment.
Some of the most emotional issues to confront in a divorce are child custody and visitation matters. Divorce not only changes your life, but also dramatically affects the life and routine of your child. You probably are anxious and scared because you naturally want what is best for your child. Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen to assist you in devising a parenting plan that is best for your child.
Illinois law requires that custody disputes be resolved in the “best interest” of the child. The courts look at the needs of the child as the priority in determining (1) parental decision making power and (2) parenting time. Typically, the best interests of a child require a stable and meaningful relationship with both parents. However, sometimes factors such as mental illness, chemical dependency or violent tendencies present unique problems of safety and fitness. These are some of the factors a court considers when determining the type of custody a parent will possess. Ms. Cohen understands the anxiety related to your concern about maintaining a parent-child relationship during and after your divorce. That anxiety can unfortunately cloud or distort your judgment and may make the divorce process more difficult than it needs to be. Ms. Cohen can explain your legal rights and responsibilities and answer your questions about child custody issues. Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen today to discuss child custody in a confidential and safe environment.
A prenuptial agreement (“prenup”) is a way to protect your assets if your upcoming marriage fails. It is a contractual agreement between you and your soon-to-be spouse outlining the process to follow should you divorce in the future. If you have significant assets or expect to receive significant assets during your marriage, it is prudent to consider a prenup. Prenuptial agreements allow both parties to reach a level of financial security and serenity before entering the marriage. Prenuptial Agreements can be written to preserve a family’s assets, to prevent the sharing of debt with one’s partner, or to clarify financial responsibilities during the marriage. Prenups always require that spouses use separate counsel and they do not cover child support or child custody issues.
Postnuptial agreements (“postnups”) work similarly to prenuptial agreements but are written and signed after a couple is married. A postnup can be useful in defining each spouse’s responsibilities and rights, both during the marriage and in the occurrence of a divorce. It typically defines the status of all or a portion of the marital assets, specifying ownership of certain property to a spouse. It also can specify who is responsible for certain debts. A postnuptial agreement is oftentimes helpful in protecting marital property interests of one spouse if the other spouse is about to enter in a risky business venture. Postnups also assist couples who are heading towards divorce as a means to clarify their agreement before the court process, helping streamline the proceedings.
Contact Evanston Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen to discuss your prenuptial or postnuptial agreement in a confidential and safe environment.
Ms. Cohen understands the emotional and financial stress involved when entering a marriage, terminating a marriage, and/or determining child support, custody and visitation. Whether you’re needing a prenup or postnup, filing for divorce or separation, or needing guidance with child support issues, Ms. Cohen is here to help you. Divorce and Family Lawyer Debbie Cohen will provide you with the knowledge, support and compassion you need in order to make the best decisions for yourself and your children and she will fight for you.