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Washington Illinois Family and Real Estate Law Blog

Do I have to let my neighbor drive across my property?

If you have recently purchased an acreage in Illinois, and a neighbor has an access road across the property, you may wonder if you have to allow him to keep his driveway in place. This is the time to review the title and survey and find out what they say about the easement.

SFGate.com explains that the easement on your property could be terminated if your neighbor agrees to release interest in it. If the neighbor's property is surrounded on all sides with no means of access, this is not likely. However, if he has another means of access, a simple discussion may be all it takes to reach that agreement. A verbal agreement alone is not enough, though. A quitclaim deed must be filed, with you as the grantee, to do the trick. The easement is not eliminated from the legal records until the deed has been recorded with the county. 

What to do if you are the non-custodial parent

If you are going through a divorce in Illinois, you may have already been faced with some of the challenges of separating from your ex-spouse. One of the new changes you may be coping with could be the separation from your children if you have been declared as the non-custodial parent. At Essig Law Office, we are aware of the challenges that parents face when arranging child custody agreements during a divorce. 

When you are the custodial parent, raising your children may seem relatively unchanged. However, if you are the non-custodial parent, it can be difficult to overcome emotional barriers and come to terms with an effective parenting method when you are regularly separated from your children. According to familyeducation.com, some of the responsibilities you have as the non-custodial parent include the following:

  • Providing child care when your ex has some place to be.
  • Sharing the disciplinary portion of parenting, and establishing "ground rules" that both you and your ex will try to maintain.
  • Maintaining an environment that is positive and comfortable, and avoid any negative discussion about your divorce or your ex.
  • Avoid charming your children with excessive gifts and awards. Rather, focus your time on doing things that will create positive memories and strong relationships. 

Can an Illinois divorce be stopped once it is started?

Every marriage goes through rough patches, and you may have thought that the issues you and your spouse are facing are things the two of you can overcome. Suddenly being served with Illinois divorce papers in this situation may be particularly devastating. You may still have hopes of reconciling with your spouse and stopping the divorce process. But is it legally possible?

Unfortunately, you cannot legally stop the divorce from happening once your spouse has filed. However, according to Southern Illinois University School of Law, once someone has filed for an Illinois divorce and the spouse has been served the papers, the filer can still change his or her mind. Your spouse has the option to file a motion to dismiss the petition at any time before the hearing or trial starts. After that, your spouse would need to make sure you and your attorney get copies of the motion and affidavit.

Protect your future today with a prenuptial agreement

Engaged Illinois couples have much to look forward to, and few of them likely consider what will happen in case their marriage does not end happily. It is not romantic to think about the possibility of divorce in the future, yet it can be prudent to consider ways you can protect yourself before you get married.

One of the ways you can shield your future interests is by drafting a prenuptial agreement. Many people think that this is really only necessary for the wealthy or those with significant assets, but in reality, it can be a practical move for many. This simple step can help you have a contingency plan in place and secure peace of mind as you move forward to marriage. 

Before you spend your first alimony check

Receiving an alimony award in an Illinois divorce may make a person feel relieved that he or she will be taken care of. However, there are things to know about that payment before depositing it in the bank. 

Huffington Post notes that alimony is considered income by the IRS. That means the recipient has to pay taxes on it. Unlike employment earnings, none of that is withheld automatically, so it is a good idea to set some back from each check so that tax time will not become a burden.

Can you avoid losing your business during a divorce?

If you and your spouse are seeking a divorce in the state of Illinois, you may have already begun to think about the list of important decisions you need to make in the coming months. Often, you may be faced with choices to make regarding child custody, spousal support, relocation and separation of assets. If you and your spouse own a business together, you will face an even more complicated future as you work to protect your company and avoid losing it all as the result of separating from your partner. 

Fortunately, there are precautions you can take to give yourself extra security and put your business in a position to overcome some of the foreseeable challenges it may face. According to Entrepreneur, the careful way that you approach your divorce can potentially have the ability to protect your organization's success despite significant changes in the company's leadership or structure. Some of the things you can do include the following:

  • Give your spouse the boot: If your spouse is responsible for facilitating major parts of organizational operations, be proactive about letting him or her go and finding a comparable replacement who is capable of keeping your company's mission and success alive. 
  • Be willing to compromise: If your ultimate desire is to keep 100 percent of your company, be flexible and prepare to give up other assets in exchange for keeping a large share of your business. 
  • Keep detailed records: Immediately gather valuable records that provide transparency of the company's actions. Additionally, separate personal and business finances and expenditures to prevent complicated confusion and contention when it comes time to separate assets. 

Do you need an attorney when you sell your home?

Your house in Illinois is more than a home; it is an investment. While selling it can be emotional as you pack up the memories and prepare to move, it can also be an opportunity to maximize the return on the investment. According to the Illinois State Bar Association, a real estate attorney is an essential part of your team.

One of the factors that may affect the sale of your home is the title. Even though your name is on the deed, there could be issues with the rights to the property if there is a lien, a past ownership claim or a mortgage. An attorney can review all the documents related to the title, including the deed and your mortgage information, to ensure that the title is clear before proceeding. 

If you cannot pay your child support payment

As the noncustodial parent, you have been making your child support payments regularly since your divorce was finalized in Illinois. However, you suddenly find yourself unable to make the payments. We at the Essig Law Office understand that the state has protection in place for those whose altered circumstances mean they cannot pay the original child support amount.

According to the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services, the agency's Division of Child Support Services sends out notices to parents once every three years informing them that they may file for a review of the child support order. This notice includes the instructions for doing so. Maybe you are not going to be able to wait three years, though. 

Is your family hoping to move forward with stepparent adoption?

Many Illinois families grow and expand through adoption. There are a few different types of adoption, and in your case, you may not want to adopt domestically or internationally, but to adopt your stepchild. If you are looking to take this step and adopt the biological children of your spouse, it is helpful to understand how this process works.

Stepparent adoption could be a great step for your family, but it's more complicated than simply completing the paperwork. It involves getting permission from the other parents or seeking the termination of parental rights of the other biological parent. If this is a path you would like to pursue, it could be beneficial to seek a full understanding of your legal rights and options.

Before signing a commercial lease

Committing to a location is a major factor for business owners in Illinois. Even when someone finds the storefront that has the right foot and vehicle traffic, the wrong lease agreement can ruin the company.

Here are some things for people to keep in mind when going over the lease.

Our Testimonials

  1. The Essig staff are courteous and helpful, and the attorneys are professional and knowledgeable. They are very efficient, with prompt turn-around times on title orders and real estate closings. I would highly recommend this office to others!

    -Donna Jones Craig Jim Maloof Realtor

  2. The Essig staff are courteous and helpful, and the attorneys are professional and knowledgeable. They are very efficient, with prompt turn-around times on title orders and real estate closings. I would highly recommend this office to others!

    -Donna Jones Craig Jim Maloof Realtor

  3. The Essig staff are courteous and helpful, and the attorneys are professional and knowledgeable. They are very efficient, with prompt turn-around times on title orders and real estate closings. I would highly recommend this office to others!

    -Donna Jones Craig Jim Maloof Realtor

  4. The Essig staff are courteous and helpful, and the attorneys are professional and knowledgeable. They are very efficient, with prompt turn-around times on title orders and real estate closings. I would highly recommend this office to others!

    -Donna Jones Craig Jim Maloof Realtor

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Washington Office 135 Washington Square Washington, IL 61571 Phone: 309-481-2431 Fax: 309-444-1916 Map & Directions

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