Family Law Attorneys in Rockford IL You Can Trust

Family Law is a term related to a number of different legal questions and issues involving the family unit. The most obvious of these are divorce and child custody, but family law also includes matters such as adoption, orders of protection, and the modification of existing court orders and judgements, among other legal issues.

At Crosby & Crosby, we understand that life can often develop and unfold in unexpected ways, and when that happens, we want to be there with legal services to help you in every way related to family law.

Children’s Issues in Family Law

Family law cases do not always involve children, but when they do, the questions related to the children, such as custody and visitation, are always given first priority. It is absolutely essential that children are safe and their best interests are being protected.

In Illinois, judges presiding in family law matters make every effort to protect the welfare of children. Whether the case before them is a divorce, a non-marital relationship that led to the birth of children, or the adoption of a child or children, their standard and first consideration is always “what is best for the children.”

In addition to this standard, judges also consider the following parenting factors:

  • Education of the children
  • Living conditions
  • Past care of the children
  • Financial stability of each parent
  • Health care of the children and which parent is better qualified to provide it
  • Possible endangerment by either parent
  • Social activities of the children and which parent is better qualified to support those activities

All these considerations will be used by judges in determining which parent will have the right to make major decisions for the children. This decision-making power is often shared by both parents, but there are situations in which the judge will award this authority to only one parent.

Child Support and Expenses

The determination of child support is determined by a calculation based on Illinois law. The calculation considers the income of both parents, as well as who provides health insurance for the child and how many overnight stays the child has with each parent.

It is also essential to remember that each parent has an obligation to help meet expenses over and beyond child support. These include, among others, school enrollment expenses, extra-curricular activities, and health expenses not covered by insurance.

Property Issues in Family Law

Whether there are children or not, money and the distribution of property will always be an issue in the dissolution of a marriage. And contrary to what you may have heard from other sources, during divorce proceedings, all property involved, including real estate, will be known to both parties.

This generalization also applies to the division of property in non-marital cases. All income and assets will be known to both parties involved in the settlement. The main difference between a marital and a non-marital situation is that in the latter case, if there are children, income and assets will be evaluated for purposes of determining child support.

This evaluation will lead to the issuance of a court order designating which parent will be responsible for the children’s expenses. As a general rule, responsibility will be shared by both parents.

Whatever the specific circumstances of a case, you can be assured that during what is referred to as discovery (the phase of a lawsuit during which each party can ask for full disclosure from the opposing party), the attorneys at Crosby & Crosby will leave no stone unturned gathering all pertinent information.

At Crosby & Crosby, You’re Never Alone

If you or anyone you know needs a family law attorney in Winnebago County, Illinois we hope you will think first of the law firm of Crosby & Crosby. We pledge that our team of highly skilled and experienced attorneys will work with you to build a successful legal strategy. At your earliest convenience, contact our firm to schedule your initial consultation and let the most experienced family lawyers in Rockford, IL go to work for you.

Above all, we want you to know that first and foremost, we are here to help you succeed and protect the things and individuals you most value.

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Questions? We Can Help!

Helpful questions about family law

How to choose the right divorce lawyer?

Choosing the right divorce lawyer, in our mind, comes down to three factors. First, is this lawyer going to be an aggressive advocate for me? Second, is this lawyer a person I can get along with personally? Third, do I trust this lawyer to communicate with me effectively? If you walk away from an initial consultation with a lawyer answering yes to those three questions, you have likely found the lawyer who is right for you.

Legal work can be extremely time consuming. Your expectations should not necessarily be that your lawyer is someone you can vent to about your personal life, as that would likely result in an unreasonably high bill. But you should expect your lawyer to keep you informed as to the status of your case. You should also expect your lawyer to listen to your wishes and concerns and use those thoughts as a basis for your case. You don’t need to talk to your lawyer everyday, but you should hear from them every other week or so.

Expect the unexpected when it comes to the Court dates. The Court system is based on a first-come-first-serve calendar, when the case is not filed as an emergency. All initial Court dates are determined by the Clerk of the Court, not of the lawyer or client. If you have a lawyer, expect the Judges to want your lawyer to do the talking, unless the Judge asks the client a question directly. You should also expect the Judge to keep the Courtroom as orderly as possible. Judges very much look down on people who speak out of turn. As for dress, the Court does not require a strict dress code, but it is always a good idea to dress professionally to show the Judge that you take the system and their Courtroom seriously.

There is a process in the law referred to as “discovery” that allows a party to a legal proceeding to discover information about the opposing party. In the context of a divorce, “discovery” is primarily used in the form of written questions and written requests for the opposing party to provide documents to the party that is doing the requesting. These are called “interrogatories” and “requests to produce.” During the process, the party answering the questions or requests must provide a written testimony, under oath, that the documents and answers are true and accurate. It is through this process of “discovery” that we are able to learn what assets a party possesses.

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