Archive for the ‘Illinois Family Law’ Category

Be Wary of Hidden Assets in Divorce

March 13th, 2015 at 8:00 am

hidden assets, division of property, Chicago family law attorneysWhen a couple has reached the end of their marriage and divorce is imminent, both spouses are not often equally prepared. Frequently, the partner with more financial control has begun to plan to for the future and, in some cases, may be taking steps to manipulate asset valuation so as to individually benefit when property is divided in the impending divorce. Although undervalued or hidden assets may be more common among wealthier divorcing couples, lower net-worth families can be affected as much or more by the deceptive and illegal practice.

Who Hides Assets?

Few married couples share responsibility for the family’s finances equally. In many situations, one spouse is responsible for the household budget by paying bills, managing investments, and making all or most major financial decisions. He or she typically maintains unfettered access to all joint accounts and monetary resources. The partner with control of the family’s money is often the one with most opportunity and temptation to use the situation to his or her advantage. However, if the spouse tasked with financial responsibility is not the primary wage-earner, the spouse with the higher income may be inclined to keep assets and resources away from joint accounts, while putting money aside for the post-divorce future.

Where to Find Hidden Assets

While those who hide assets typically do so for one reason – affecting the division of property to his or own benefit – the methods used may differ greatly depending on the situation. Financial experts, however, have identified several of the most common ways a partner may attempt to hide marital assets:

  • Easily Undervalued Purchases: New artwork for her home office or parts for the classic car he is restoring may be more valuable than they seem.
  • Reporting Lower Income at Tax Time: Despite the risk of an IRS audit and subsequent penalties, only officially reported income is used in most financial analyses.
  • Paying More at Tax Time: An intentional overpayment to the IRS or other creditors may be recovered at a later date, presumably to be refunded after completion of the divorce proceedings.
  • Investment Transfers: Stock accounts may be transferred to relatives, business associates, or dummy companies, again, to be recovered later.
  • Physical Hidden Cash: Sometimes, hiding assets may be as simple as putting cash in safety deposit box or under the bed in a shoebox.

Help in Uncovering Hidden Assets

There are countless ways in which a determined individual can try to affect the outcome of property and asset division in divorce. With the rise of digital technology, it has become much more difficult, though, to keep hidden assets from being discovered by legal and financial professionals. Forensic accountants are specifically trained to identify and quantify irregularities in financial records, and in conjunction with a qualified lawyer, can provide invaluable assistance to many complex divorce situations.

If you have reason to believe your spouse has been hiding assets and a divorce seems imminent, our team is ready to go to work for you. Contact an experienced Illinois property division attorney today at Anderson & Associates, P.C. We offer convenient office locations in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Northbrook, Orland Park, and downtown Chicago.

Study Finds Lower Divorce Rate for Doctors, Medical Professionals

March 12th, 2015 at 7:00 am

divorce rate, divorce among doctors, Illinois Family Law AttorneyA career in the medical field presents a large number of both professional and personal challenges. Doctors, nurses, and healthcare administrators often spend long hours focused on the needs of the patients in their care. Considering the demanding schedule and the high-stress environment in which many medical professionals work, it is not unusual for family life to be directly affected. In fact, it would be reasonable to assume that the strain a healthcare career can place on a marriage might, overall, lead to a higher divorce rate. A new study, however, seems to suggest that such an assumption would be wrong.

A team of researchers led by Dr. Dan Ly, medical resident at Massachusetts General Hospital, released its findings last month in a report published in the journal BMJ. “It’s been speculated that doctors are more likely to be divorced than other professionals because of the long hours they keep and the stress associated with the job,” senior author of the study, Anupam Jena, M.D, said in a statement, “but no large-scale study has ever investigated whether that is true.”

Dr. Jena, a physician at Mass General and assistant professor at Harvard Medical School, found that the idea that physicians are likely to divorce is prevalent even among doctors themselves. To find out, the team examined data taken from the American Community Survey, an ongoing demographic survey conducted the U.S. Census Bureau. The research looked at more than 6.5 million individuals, including a quarter million doctors, dentists, nurses, pharmacists, and healthcare executives.

Controlling for age and income, the team discovered that physicians divorce at a rate of about 24 percent, second-lowest among the studied groups. Pharmacists enjoy the lowest rate at 23 percent, while dentists have a 25 percent likelihood of divorce. Executives and nurses were slightly higher at 31 percent and 33 percent, respectively, but all of the  healthcare professionals were found less likely to divorce than non-healthcare workers, who carry a 35 percent divorce rate.

The findings also indicated that a female doctor was much more likely to divorce than a male doctor, especially if she worked more than 40 hours per week. Dr. Jena speculated the gender disparity may be rooted in the common expectations placed on women in regard to work and family balance. “Females traditionally bear more of the household and child-rearing responsibilities on average, and female physicians, if they have to do both that and maintain a job as a physician, that could lead to a lot stress and lead to higher rates of divorce,” he said.

Doctors and medical professionals, Dr. Jena concluded, should not worry about a high rate of divorce due to job-related stress. Female doctors, however, should be aware of the impact that balancing work and family life may be having on their relationships.

Whether you are a doctor, nurse, or dentist, or if your job is completely unrelated to healthcare, divorce can be a challenging process. With many decisions to make and factors to consider, a qualified divorce attorney can provide the help you deserve. Contact the experienced Illinois family law attorneys at Anderson & Associates, P.C. today. We have offices conveniently located in downtown Chicago, Schaumburg, Wheaton, Orland, Park, and Northbrook to meet your legal needs.

Collaborative Law vs. Mediation

March 10th, 2015 at 11:53 am

collaborative law, mediation, Chicago Family Law AttorneysMediation has become a widely used and familiar part of the divorce process. Collaborative law is a lesser known form of alternative dispute resolution commonly used now in Illinois divorce cases. Many are still unfamiliar with what collaborative divorce really means. Often times, people assume that collaborative divorce and mediation are the same thing and these terms can be used interchangeably. However, there are several differences that are important to understand before deciding whether either process is right for you.

Collaborative Law

The main goal of collaborative law is similar to that of mediation in divorce cases: to resolve important family matters efficiently outside of the courthouse. The benefits are similar to mediation as well: saving the parties time and money, while sparing them the frustrations of the court process. The procedure, however, is quite different. In collaborative law, each party hires his or her own attorney, and then all of them work together to negotiate settlements on key issues. The parties will also retain a parenting specialist, financial specialist, and divorce coaches to assist them in developing communication and facilitate a final agreement. In the event that the parties are unable to come to an agreement using the collaborative process, and the case goes to traditional litigation, the attorneys originally hired to represent each party must withdraw and each party must hire new counsel.

Mediation

Mediation in a divorce case is the process by which both spouses go to a neutral third party, or mediator, with the hopes of compromising on certain key issues in the divorce.  While the mediator must be trained in alternative dispute resolution, he or she is not required to be a licensed attorney. Both parties may have their attorneys present at the mediation, though it is not mandatory.  However, it is important to remember that the mediator is neutral and not advocating for the rights of either party as an attorney would.  In complex situations, particularly those involving financial concerns, each spouse may want his or her attorney to be present in order to make sure their individual interests are being protected. Separate counsel for each party can help ensure that any resulting agreement is not only equitable, but legally sound and sustainable.

Similarities

As discussed a bit above, both processes have a common goal and many similar benefits, including saving time and money and avoiding the unpredictability of the judicial process. Both collaborative law and mediation are also commonly used when the parties agree at the outset of the divorce to keep the conflict and the costs low.

Because mediation and collaborative law require mutual respect to succeed, it is imperative that both parties do their best to work together throughout the entire process. Both methods allow the divorcing spouses to decide upon the terms of their own divorce, as opposed to leaving it up to the discretion of a judge.  

If you are  considering filing for divorce and think that collaborative law, mediation, or another alternative dispute resolution technique may work for your family, contact our office today to discuss your options. Our team of experienced Chicago divorce attorneys at Anderson & Associates, P.C. can help determine what the best method will be for your divorce. We have offices in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Northbrook, Orland Park, and downtown Chicago.

Petitioning for Sole or Joint Child Custody

March 4th, 2015 at 7:00 am

joint custody, sole custody, Illinois Family Law AttorneyIllinois recognizes two types of child custody agreements: sole and joint custody. If you are considering filing for divorce and you have children, deciding between sole and joint custody will be one of the most important choices you make during your case. The best interest of the child or children will be the first consideration with the judge, which is determined bsd on several factors set forth in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. In order to understand what these factors are and how they may apply to you and your family, you should speak with an experienced Chicago child custody and divorce lawyer.

Sole Custody vs. Joint Custody

Sole and joint custody does not just refer to which parent will have the child more or less time than the other. More importantly, it involves the decision-making power of each parent. When you are filing for divorce and children are involved, the court will take several considerations into account, including, but not limited to:

  • Who is the primary caregiver;
  • Wishes of the parents and child or children in question;
  • The nature of the relationship each parent has with the child;
  • History or likelihood of abuse while under each parent’s care;
  • Living situation at each parent’s house; and
  • Likelihood of the custodial parent to foster a relationship between the child and non-custodial parent.

If a parent has sole custody, the child will live with the parent and the parent will have the legal rights to make all major decisions regarding the child. These decisions include education, religion, medical, and other major life-changing decisions. The custodial parent may ask the non-custodial parent for their opinion, but ultimately, the sole custodial parent makes the decisions. This does not mean the non-custodial parent will not see the child; they typically will have visitation rights as ordered by the court.

Parents with joint custody, on the other hand, must work together to make the major decisions for the child to further his or her best interest. They can work through their lawyers or a court appointed mediator to work out their differences when making decision about education, religion, medical procedures, and other important issues. In joint custody situation, one parent is usually designated as the residential parent, meaning the parent with whom the resides primarily, and the other parent will have a visitation schedule. Ultimately, a Joint Parenting Agreement that outlines each parent’s powers, rights, and responsibilities, will be signed by both parties and entered with the court.

Best Interest of the Child

Illinois courts may consider the wishes of both parents and the child, and typically will approve custody arrangements negotiated by the parties, but the judge is not required to do so. The judge must take the child’s best interest into account and make a decision based on the findings of his or her investigations into each parent, living situations, income, and any other relevant information. Using your children to hurt your spouse may end up hurting your case if the judge feels you are trying to petition for sole custody just to hurt your spouse’s relationship with your children or for tactical purposes in your divorce case.

If you are filing for divorce and have children, you will want to ensure that your divorce judgment furthers your children’s best interest. Contact a Chicago child custody attorney today to discuss your options regarding the custody agreement for your family’s situation. Anderson & Associates, P.C. assists clients in Illinois from one of our five offices, conveniently located in Chicago, Schaumburg, Wheaton, Northbrook, and Orland Park.

Proceeding with a Stepparent Adoption

March 3rd, 2015 at 7:00 am

adoption, divorce, Illinois family lawyerThere is no law that says families have to be related by blood or by marriage. In fact, Illinois adoption law says the exact opposite.

While adoption often involves a single- or two-parent household bringing a new child into the family, that is not the only type of adoption. When a parent divorces and later remarries, the new spouse becomes a stepparent. In some cases, stepparents might want to officially adopt their spouse’s children. Stepparent adoption is one of the most common types of adoption and is a fairly simple process in Illinois.

However, adoption is not always an option for stepparents. There are three things that are important to understand about stepparent adoption:

  1. Stepparents looking to adopt their spouse’s children must be married to the custodial parent. Put another way, if the child’s other parent has residential or sole custody of the child, adoption as a stepparent is not likely to occur.

  2. Illinois law does not permit a child to have three legal parents. For the stepparent to adopt the spouse’s child, the other parent must terminate his or her parental rights (thereby forgoing all custody, visitation, and other parental rights afforded by law). If the other parent is deceased, such consent is unnecessary.

  3. If the other parent does not consent, the stepparent adoption may still proceed if the other parent is proven to be unfit.

Establishing Parental Unfitness

Statutory grounds for parental unfitness include, but are not limited:

  • Abandoning the child;
  • Deserting the child for a three-month period before the process of adoption;
  • Failure to maintain interest in or responsibility for the child’s well-being;
  • Failure to show interest in a newborn in the first 30 days following the child’s birth;
  • Failure to pay child support or attempt to provide financial support, despite being able to do so;
  • Evidence of repeated physical abuse; or
  • Statutory neglect.

Seeking the Child’s Consent

Stepparents also have to seek written consent from the child if the child is at least 14 years old. Once all parties have given their consent, or a parent has been found unfit, then the adoption process can proceed. The entire process can be completed within 90 days. (If the stepparent must establish parental unfitness, then the process will take longer.)

Putative Fathers

Keep in mind that a child born out of wedlock can also be adopted by a stepparent. The biological father can still object to the adoption as long as he registered with the Putative Father Registry within 30 days of the child’s birth.

If you are interested in adopting your stepchildren, contact one of our Chicago adoption attorneys to discuss your case today. We will help facilitate the process of adoption and answer any questions you may have. With office locations in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Northbrook, Orland Park and downtown Chicago, we are well-suited to serve the needs of clients throughout the region.

Research Supports Millennials Prefer to Wait Out Marriage

February 26th, 2015 at 9:51 am

waiting on marriage, Illinois family law attorneyIt has been reported that the millennial generation is gaining ground as the emergent consumer demographic in the United States. However, this generation is also redefining societal views on marriage and divorce. With cross-checked data between the American Community Surveys and the 2000 U.S. Census report, millennials are waiting longer to tie the knot or opting to forgo matrimonial vows all together, adding credence to a changing marital tide.

A recent working paper, published by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), an American nonprofit research organization, presents data supporting the millennial non-marital movement. Although NBER research found that couples who opt for marriage generally are happier and face life-hardships together to avoid divorce, the research also supports the millennial train of thought in waiting for marriage.

It appears that research across the pond is also producing similar conclusions. NBER researchers reviewed similar data derived from over 1,000 British couples. The data, cross-checked with The United Kingdom’s Annual Population Survey, the British Household Panel Survey, and Gallop World, produced similar findings similar to the NBER review. In the British findings, however, another interesting trend emerged.

By opting to ward off marriage until a later age, or not at all, the British research concluded that if both partners consider their significant other as their best friend that they are happier. There is, in fact, no real rush to tie the knot and non-traditional living arrangements can reap the same benefits as a happy civil union.

In a divorce torn American society, perhaps millennials are on to something. NBER study co-author and University of British Columbia economics professor John Helliwell believes they are. As told to The New York Times, Helliwell suggests that perhaps it is time to rethink the importance placed upon the institution of marriage and rely more on friendship and compassion as the foundation for a successful relationship.

Additional surveys are also arriving at the same conclusion. A 2012 publication, Reexamining the Case for Marriage: Union Formation and Changes in Well-Being from the National Council on Family Relations®, supports that those couples opting to delay marriage evoked a higher level of self-esteem and were generally happier than their married counterparts. However, the study did also reveal that, married or unmarried, if both relationship statuses were based on a foundation of trust and friendship, their levels of a sense of well-being were raised.

If you are revisiting your marital situation because you or your spouse is considering moving on with life, or if you are in need of a cohabitation agreement to protect your assets with your unmarried partner, an experienced Chicago, IL family law attorney at Anderson & Associates, P.C. can help. Our lawyers can meet with you to personally address any legal questions you may have. We have five offices throughout the area: downtown Chicago, Schaumburg, Wheaton, and Northbrook.

Voluntary and Involuntary Termination of Parental Rights

February 12th, 2015 at 10:11 am

parental rights in Illinois, Chicago IL child custody attorneyBeing a parent is both a responsibility and a privilege. The basic responsibilities– contributing to your child’s care and support–are fairly straightforward. Parental privileges are a little more obscure and vary by family. Legally, however, parenting is a privilege because parental status comes attached with certain rights, such as the right to make decisions regarding the child.  It also comes with responsibilities, such as contributing to the child’s financial support.

Note that parental rights can be terminated and the legal parent-child relationship destroyed. Under these circumstances, the parent relinquishes the responsibilities and the privileges, including the right to be part of the child’s life. The child also loses any legal obligations toward the parent.

Parental rights can be terminated voluntarily, or involuntarily, if:

  • The parent surrenders the child to an authorized agency for adoption;
  • The parent consents to the child’s adoption;
  • The parent waives his parental rights as pursuant to putative father laws; or
  • A court determines that the parent is unfit and then appoints a guardian ad litem who is authorized to consent to adoption.

Parental unfitness must be established by clear and convincing evidence and does not turn on the best interests of the child. Common grounds for unfitness are:

  • Child abandonment;
  • Substantial neglect;
  • Failure to maintain interest, concern or responsibility for the child’s welfare;
  • Deserting the child for a three-month period prior to the adoption;
  • Physical abuse;
  • Depravity (i.e., conviction for certain serious crimes, including murder);
  • Failure to protect the child from dangerous conditions; or
  • Failure to contribute to the support the child despite having the physical and financial ability to do so.

Once the court rules on the termination of parental rights, it must next consider the best interests of the child. For example, should the child be placed in a foster home or adopted by a family member? The court will decide; the former parent does not have a say.

Reestablishing Parental Rights by Petitioning for Adoption

Former parents may sometimes reestablish their parental rights by petitioning for adoption. The child is eligible for adoption if:

  • The child was a ward of the state when the parental rights were terminated; and
  • The child was adopted by blood relatives who have since died without appointing a standby guardian or adoptive parent; or
  • The adoptive parent has a physical or mental impairment rendering him unable to care for the child, and he consents to the adoption petition.

Adoption eligibility is not the only criteria. The parent must also prove that the adoption is in the child’s best interest and that the former parent is willing and able to care for the child. The petition will likely hinge on the initial basis for terminating parental rights, as well as the steps the parent has since taken to resolve the issues existing at the time of the termination.

If you are a parent facing involuntary termination–or seeking voluntary termination–of parental rights, contact one of our Chicago family law attorneys today. We will help you understand your legal rights and the legal consequences of termination. Contact us today for a consultation. Anderson & Associates, P.C. has offices in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Northbrook, Orland Park and downtown Chicago.

Visitation Rights as a Grandparent

January 30th, 2015 at 12:36 pm

grandparent visitation rights in Illinois, child custody attorney in ChicagoYour son or daughter has filed for divorce or completed the divorce process with their ex-spouse and custody of the children will be or has been determined. As the grandparent, you are left wondering about your visitation rights with your grandchildren. In Illinois, grandparents can petition for visitation rights under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act if the grandchild is at least one year old, under certain conditions.

Determining Your Rights

When a grandparent is unreasonably being denied visitation with their grandchild, a grandparent may petition for visitation rights if:

  • The child’s other parent is deceased or has been missing for at least 3 months; or
  • A parent is found to be incompetent by a court of law; or
  • A parent has been incarcerated during the 3 months preceding the filing.

In addition, grandparents can file a petition for visitation if the parents are divorced or there is a pending dissolution of marriage and at least one parent does not object to visitation. In the event that the child was born to unmarried parents and the parents are not living together, maternal grandparents may file for visitation.  Paternal grandparents, however, cannot file unless paternity has been established by a court.

All of these conditions may be irrelevant if the parent is giving up their parental rights to the child. If the grandchild is being adopted by someone else, it cuts off the grandparent’s visitation rights, unless the child is adopted by certain family members or a stepparent.

Best Interests of the Child

If one of the above conditions is met, the judge will then make a decision he or she feels is in the best interest of the child after taking into account multiple statutory considerations.   In making this decision, the court presumes that a parent’s decisions regarding visitation do not harm the well-being of the child; a grandparent requesting visitation has to prove the parent’s actions and decisions are harmful to the child’s mental, physical or emotional health.

If you are looking for representation to get visitation rights for yourself or limit visitation rights for another person, contact one of our five offices in Illinois. Our Chicago grandparents’ rights attorneys assist clients from our locations in downtown Chicago, Northbrook, Orland Park, Schaumburg, and Wheaton. Anderson & Associates, P.C., can discuss your concerns and help you understand your options.

A Premarital Option for Gay Couples Contemplating Marriage

January 29th, 2015 at 2:36 pm

premarital option for gay couples, Chicago family law attorneysThe United States Supreme Court recently granted certiorari in four same-sex marriage cases. The Court will decide whether it is unconstitutional for states to ban same-sex marriage, and whether the Constitution requires states to recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere.

Currently, a majority of states permit same-sex marriage, including Illinois. (Illinois’ marriage equality law took effect on June 1, 2014.)

Gay couples have the right to marry in Illinois–and the right to divorce. For that reason, gay couples, like straight couples, may want to consider their options for mitigating the consequences of marriage dissolution. One of these options is a premarital agreement, which is a written contract outlining how marital assets will be divided if the marriage ends in divorce (or legal separation).

Executing a Premarital Agreement

The agreement must be written and signed by both spouses. The contract is not valid if either party was coerced, or if evidence exists of duress or fraud. If the couple wishes to revoke or amend the agreement, which is enacted upon marriage, they must voluntarily sign a separate agreement expressing those changes.

A basic prenuptial agreement includes information pertaining to:

  • Marital assets, which is generally property that the couple acquires during marriage;
  • Non-marital assets, which is includes property only one spouse possessed before the marriage;
  • How marital and non-marital property will be divided in the event of a divorce;
  • Whether or not each party should write a will reflecting the terms of the premarital agreement;
  • A party’s responsibility to make maintenance payments (alimony); and
  • The party’s choice of law to govern how the agreement will be interpreted (e.g., does Illinois law or another state’s law apply).

While the agreement may address maintenance, the court does not have to accept the parties’ terms on this issue under certain conditions. For example, if the parties agreed to eliminate alimony, but one party would suffer undue hardship due to unforeseen circumstances, the court may require the other party to make payments.

Executing a Postmarital Agreement

If you opted against a premarital agreement, it is not too late to define each spouse’s financial rights and responsibilities. A couple can achieve similar results by entering into a postmarital agreement after they marry. A postmarital agreement must also be in writing and voluntarily signed by both parties.

Marriage is stressful enough without having to contemplate what might happen in the event of divorce. If you are considering a premarital (or postmarital) agreement, contact one of our Illinois family law attorneys today at (312) 345-9999. The law firm of Anderson & Associates, P.C. will help you execute a valid contract with beneficial terms. We can assist clients from our Illinois offices located in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Northbrook, Orland Park, and downtown Chicago.

What are the Differences Between a Legal Separation and a Divorce?

January 27th, 2015 at 8:14 pm

legal separation and divorce difference, Chicago divorce and family law attorneyNot everyone understands the distinction between a legal separation and dissolution of marriage. However, it is important for couples experiencing marital problems to understand the options that are available to them, especially after deciding that they can no longer live together.

Legal Separation

Pursuing a legal separation is similar to filing for divorce. The main difference between a separation and dissolution is that a legally separated couple is still married. Keep in mind that opting for a separation does not prohibit a divorce in the future–that option remains open. A couple might want to consider a legal separation if they:

  • Do not want a divorce;
  • Live in separate residences; and
  • Want a court to legally define their rights and obligations regarding child support, and maintenance payments.

Note that a court will also address the issues listed in the third bullet point during a divorce proceeding. The court generally will not address issues regarding the division of property in a legal separation. However, the entry of a judgment for legal separation will stop the accumulation of marital property. In other words, any property that either spouse acquires after the legal separation would be presumed to be nonmarital property if either spouse files for divorce in the future.

Divorce

A petition for legal separation generally does not have to include a party’s specific reasons for pursuing that option. The same cannot be said for a divorce petition. A party petitioning for divorce must establish one of the following grounds:

  • The petitioner’s spouse was at the time of the marriage and continues to be naturally impotent;
  • The petitioner’s spouse was already married when he or she married the petitioner;
  • The petitioner’s spouse was adulterous;
  • The petitioner’s spouse deserted the petitioner for at least one year;
  • The petitioner’s spouse has been habitually drunk or abused addictive drugs for at least two years;
  • The petitioner’s spouse has threatened or attempted to kill the petitioner;
  • The petitioner’s spouse is guilty of physical or mental cruelty;
  • The petitioner’s spouse is a convicted felon; or
  • The petitioner’s spouse infected the petitioner with an STD.

In addition to the above grounds for dissolution, a petitioner can prove that there are irreconcilable differences between the spouses that have caused the marriage to break down.

However, Illinois only permits divorce based on irreconcilable differences if the parties have been separated for at least two years. If the parties have lived apart for at least six months then that requirement may be waived, but only if both consent in writing. It is important to note that this separation requirement does not require a “legal separation.”

The respondent may contest the grounds of the divorce petition. While the chances of staving off divorce are slim, he or she can request that the court order a conciliation conference. If the parties are unable to reconcile then the court will proceed with the divorce.

If you are considering a legal separation or a divorce, or if your spouse has served you with a separation or divorce petition, contact one of our family law attorneys in Chicago, IL at Anderson & Associates, P.C. We assist clients from our offices in Schaumburg, Wheaton, Northbrook, Orland Park, and downtown Chicago.