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Recent Blog Posts

How Has COVID-19 Affected Illinois Divorce Orders?

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Divorce

Kane County divorce attorney child supportCOVID-19 caused a global health crisis in addition to an economic downturn. In Illinois, non-essential businesses closed to stop the spread of the contagious virus. As a result, many people found themselves out of work or facing reduced hours and income. Depending on the industry, some companies have permitted their employees to work remotely from home. Similarly, many schools have switched to e-learning, with teachers and students participating online through video conferencing apps such as Zoom or Google Meets. With everyone adjusting to this new normal, divorced parents may be wondering if they can modify their current divorce orders for child support and child custody and visitation (now referred to as the allocation of parenting time and decision-making). Under Illinois law, it is possible to request changes to these types of orders in certain situations.

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What Is a Parallel Parenting Plan in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Divorce

Kane County child custody lawyer for parallel parentingAlthough couples typically do not enter into marriage thinking they are going to get divorced down the road, it can and does happen. Whether two people have been married a few years or a few decades, life circumstances can change, impacting their relationship. Sometimes, partners simply grow apart, or one spouse may have an extramarital affair. In many contentious divorce cases, a couple may want nothing to do with each other once the ink dries on their divorce decree. However, if a couple has children, they may struggle to share child custody if they are unable to communicate with each other in a civil manner. In these cases, parents may choose an alternative parenting plan. Parallel parenting is a type of arrangement where divorced co-parents have limited contact with each other. Depending on the situation, it may work better than the typical co-parenting option.

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How Long Can Spousal Maintenance Last After an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Divorce

McHenry County divorce attorney spousal maintenanceWhen two people decide to legally end their marriage, it can dramatically change their lifestyle. If one spouse earned a high salary and the other partner stayed home to raise their children, for example, this can impact the divorce settlement. In Illinois, maintenance or spousal support, which was previously called alimony, refers to payments made by one spouse to the other after a divorce to allow both spouses to live at a standard similar to what they enjoyed while married. Typically, spousal support is awarded in cases where there is a significant difference between the spouses’ incomes. If a couple cannot come to an agreement on their own regarding spousal maintenance, the court may intervene. A judge will look at several factors when determining if this type of financial support is appropriate.

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COVID-19 Update

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Uncategorized

Below is a brief summary of the various COVID-19 programs available to individuals and businesses during this difficult time.  This is simply to assist you in determining which program might apply to you.  All of the information was gathered from other second-hand sources, so I did the best that I could to make it easier to wade through the vast amount of information out there.  I hope this is some help to you.

Sincerely,

Colleen G. Thomas

U.S. Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loan

  • Up to $2 million loan amount
  • Only when determined by SBA that cannot qualify for a private loan
  • Up to 4% annual interest rate (3.75% small businesses)
  • Up to 30-year loan term

CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program

  • Loan forgiveness for retaining employees by temporarily expanding the traditional SBA 7(a) loan program
  • Keep on the payroll for 8 weeks

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Am I Eligible for a Loan Modification in Illinois?

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Bankruptcy

Illinois loan modification lawyerYou may take out loans to purchase various items throughout your lifetime, such as a car, a house, or to pay for your child’s college tuition. A loan modification involves modifying the terms of an existing loan, typically to make it more affordable for you as a borrower who might be in danger of defaulting, sometimes due to a scheduled rate increase or a job loss. For instance, you might want to pursue this route to avoid foreclosure on your house. It is important to note that a loan modification is not the same as refinancing a mortgage. In certain situations, you may also be allowed to file for bankruptcy. By combining these efforts, or by simply electing one of these options, you may be able to keep your home by lowering mortgage payments, avoiding default, and obtaining a way out of debilitating debt. A skilled lawyer can help ensure you take the correct legal steps to secure a promising financial future.

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How Can I Obtain a Legal Separation in Illinois?

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Legal Separation

McHenry County legal separation lawyerThe decision to divorce is not an easy one to make for many people, especially if a couple has been married for a long time. In certain situations, spouses may opt to try a legal separation before officially divorcing. Following an order of legal separation, estranged spouses will agree to live independently of each other, separating both their physical residences and their finances. The couple will remain legally married, and neither spouse can remarry unless they get a divorce.

As the old adage says, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder.” For some partners, living apart allows them time to work on their marital problems. However, they may also find that they are thriving on their own and enjoy living separate lives. If you are considering which option is best for your situation, it is important to know the legal requirements for legally separating in Illinois. In the state of Illinois, some of the same issues that are addressed in a divorce will need to be resolved in a separation.

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What Is the Difference Between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 Bankruptcy?

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Bankruptcy

McHenry County bankruptcy attorney chapter 7 13There are many ways a person can build up debt that he is unable to repay. An individual may accumulate multiple high-balance debts, such as a mortgage, auto loans, medical bills, or credit cards. Whether it is due to poor luck or decisions that did not work out as planned, when a person gets in over his head, he has the option to file for bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy allows a person to have a second chance if he no longer has the resources to repay his debts. While there are benefits to bankruptcy, such as the forgiveness of some debts, it will negatively affect a person’s credit score and his ability to borrow money in the future.

There are two common types of bankruptcy available to individuals, and each one has different requirements and regulations:

  • Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: This method of bankruptcy will discharge most outstanding debts. Some debts, such as student loans or obligations to pay child support or spousal maintenance, cannot be discharged. When filing for Chapter 7, a person’s non-exempt assets will be liquidated by the bankruptcy trustee to pay off some of his debts. Some examples of assets which are exempt are tax-exempt retirement accounts, necessary clothing, educational texts, and prescribed health aids. In some cases, a filer may be able to maintain ownership of a home and/or a car that is below a certain value. This method provides a clean slate and fresh start by eliminating most debts.

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How to Obtain Guardianship of a Child in Illinois

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in McHenry County Family Law Lawyer

McHenry County minor guardianship lawyerWhen a baby is born, the parent of that child has the immediate authority to make decisions on behalf of that child. Formal adoption of a child will also grant the same parental ability. However, unfortunate circumstances sometimes require the child to be cared for by someone who is not a biological parent, such as the death of both parents. In these cases, a guardian is appointed to care for and make parental decisions on the child’s behalf.

What Is a Guardian?

When both parents are unable to care for their child, a guardian will be appointed to step into the parental role. A guardian does not have to be related to the child, but the guardian must be 18 years or older and a resident of the United States. A potential guardian must not have any legal disability preventing the ability to care for the child or a felony conviction that would endanger the child. In most cases, the circuit court appoints a guardian. The difference between adoption and guardianship is that guardianship ends when the child turns 18 years old.

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What Steps Are Followed During the Foreclosure Process?

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Bankruptcy

Carpentersville foreclosure defense lawyerIf you are struggling to make your mortgage payments, the threat of losing your home can be a terrifying thought. After a mortgage is in default, the lender can sue to have the right to sell the property in what is known as a foreclosure sale. Throughout the United States, more than four million people have lost their homes to foreclosure since 2007. If you are facing the potential foreclosure of your home, you should be sure to understand the procedures that will be followed and the legal options available to you.

The Foreclosure Process

When a mortgage has not been paid, a lawyer from the lending institution may begin a lawsuit by filing a complaint in court. After that, a summons and complaint are delivered by a process server or a sheriff. The summons is a notification of the case being filed. Within 30 days of receiving the summons, you must either file an answer and court appearance or a motion of your own.

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Repairing Your Credit After Bankruptcy

 Posted on December 00, 0000 in Bankruptcy

McHenry County bankruptcy attorneyThe decision to file for bankruptcy is not an easy one, and it can drudge up fears about what happens once it is all over. Namely, consumers frequently experience concerns over how bankruptcy will affect their credit. Unfortunately, there is no easy way to answer this question since every situation and case is unique. However, there are cases in which the purported damage of bankruptcy may be negligible, or possibly even non-existent.

Putting Things into Perspective

Despite the common misconception that bankruptcy wreaks havoc on everyone’s credit, it is sometimes actually more beneficial than continuing down a path of late payments and unpaid bills. Each hit to your credit – each missed payment, charge-off, and collection – has a negative impact on your credit. If you have enough of these, and they are frequent because you simply cannot keep up with your debts after a job loss, illness, divorce, or other financial issue, then your credit score is constantly being attacked.

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