Illinois child custody attorney, Illinois family law attorney, Illinois divorce lawyer,Once a divorce is finalized and the final decree issued, the mechanics of how children of the marriage are cared for take effect. The overriding principle the law applies to children is always a consideration of what is in their best interests. No matter how contentious matters get between parents, coming together to raise children with their well-being in mind is seen as desirable. Time spent with children as per the parenting plan will include custody and visitation arrangements. Visitation, or  “parenting time” as it is referred to in the relevant statute, allows for a more shared approach to raising children with meaningful and quality time with each parent.

A family law attorney is your best resource for seeking suitable visitation rights. It is optimal that both parents be involved in the upbringing of their children and have regular access to them – barring any potential threat to their health or wellbeing. If your rights are being compromised, a family law attorney can assist you in petitioning for greater access to your children.

Reasonable Access

It is important for a non-custodial parent to be a part of their child’s life. The benefits of a congenial relationship between divorced parents can have positive effects on the upbringing of the child and preserves the sanctity of a family relationship.

Under Illinois marriage laws parenting time is defined as “the time during which a parent is responsible for exercising caretaking functions…” Employing what is in the best interests of the child can include any of the following tests and anything further, the court deems as relevant:

The wishes of the child, with their maturity levels in mind

  • The parents caretaking history in the preceding time;
  • The child’s interactions with their parents and other family members;
  • Costs associated with shared parental responsibilities;
  • The relationship between the parents and each, individually with the child;
  • The child’s specific needs; and
  • The child’s daily routine and obligations and extracurricular lifestyle.

The court will look at the bigger picture with the family’s particular circumstances in mind to determine an optimal situation for the children involved and what is reasonable in the context of the situation.

Parenting Time Attorney

Having a loving respectful relationship with your children after divorce is an optimal position to be in. Unfortunately, life’s circumstances have a way of complicating even the best of intentions.

If your former spouse has primary custody of your child and your visitation or parenting time, is falling below what was agreed upon, or is being restricted in some way, there is legal recourse. An experienced DuPage County parenting time attorney can assist you in petitioning for the mandated rights or greater access to your child or children. A more holistic approach to parenting post-divorce can only be viewed as a positive experience for both the adults and children. With experienced counsel in all areas of family law matters, Mulyk Laho Law, LLC based in Glen Ellyn, Illinois can advise you accordingly to best serve your needs and improve your family relationships.


Posted in Child Custody Tagged , , , , ,

Illinois child custody attorney, Illinois family law attorney, Illinois divorce lawyer,Establishing paternity can be important for your child in a number of ways such as requiring that the father provides him or her with financial support. It also serves to protect the parents’ rights and enable the father’s access to medical information.

When Does Paternity Need to be Established?

Paternity must be established when the parents of a child were not married at the time of conception or the time of birth. If the mother was married at either one of these points, the law will presume that her husband is the father.

If a man who was not the father was married to the mother at either point, that man may need to de-establish paternity.

Three Ways to Establish Paternity

Illinois law provides for three ways that the mother or father can establish paternity:

  1. Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity completed and signed by both parents (and a witness);
  2. An administrative paternity order entered by the Department of Healthcare and Family Services’ (HFS) Child Support Services; and
  3. An order of paternity entered in court by a judge.

Both types of orders typically require the parties to submit to genetic testing to determine paternity. It is good practice to complete genetic testing before agreeing to paternity or to otherwise provide support to a child.

What Happens Once Paternity Is Established

One of the most consequential effects of establishing paternity is that the father is now financially obligated to support the child. The child may also be eligible for medical benefits, Social Security, veteran’s benefits and inheritance.

In addition, the father’s name will be added to the birth certificate.

Further Steps a Parent May Wish to Take

Establishing paternity does not guarantee that the father will have any visitation or allocation of parental responsibility with the child. Any custody issues must be brought before a court following a petition.

The court will hear testimony and determine what a suitable custody arrangement should be on the basis of what is best for the child. Alternatively, the parents may be able to work out a formal arrangement that is submitted to the judge.

Contact a Glen Ellyn, IL Paternity Lawyer

If your child’s paternity needs to be established, you may wish to seek the advice of a family law attorney. We represent mothers and fathers in paternity disputes. Having an attorney means that your case will be handled efficiently and professionally.

Establishing paternity can be the first step in creating a stable family for your child. Call the experienced DuPage County paternity attorneys at Mulyk Laho Law, LLC at (630) 852-1100 for a free 30-minute consultation.



Posted in Paternity Tagged , , , , ,

Illinois spousal support attorney, Illinois alimony attorney, Illinois divorce lawyer,We understand that the availability of spousal maintenance can be a considerable factor in whether a spouse wishes to pursue divorce. If there is an income disparity between divorcing spouses, spousal maintenance may be available.

For the lesser-earning spouse, knowing that spousal maintenance is available and at what level may give the spouse more security when deciding whether divorce is an option. For the income earning spouse, the possibility of making spousal maintenance payments is a consideration that should be examined at the outset.

Spousal maintenance is sometimes referred to as spousal support or alimony. There are several important facts about spousal maintenance that those going through the divorce process should understand.

Spousal maintenance can be temporary or last for years after the marriage.

Temporary spousal maintenance is awarded only for the time that the divorce is pending. The party seeking support will file an affidavit averring to the couple’s finances.

The petitioner will also provide any necessary documentation such as tax returns, pay stubs and bank statements. The other spouse can challenge any falsities in the affidavit.

Typically, the judge will determine if temporary spousal maintenance is proper based on affidavits and documentation alone.

A judge will look at multiple factors to determine if spousal maintenance is appropriate.

The law requires a judge’s consideration to include:

  • The assets of each spouse;
  • The needs of each spouse;
  • The earning capacity of each spouse now and in the future;
  • The impairment of one spouse’s earning capacity because of that spouse devoting time to domestic duties;
  • The amount of time a spouse will need to be able to support himself or herself; and
  • The standard of living enjoyed by the spouses during the marriage.

Illinois law specifically forbids a court from considering marital misconduct in determining if spousal maintenance is appropriate.

Spousal maintenance is set according to a standard formula.

Illinois law sets forth a formula for determining temporary and permanent spousal maintenance for couples whose combined gross income is less than $250,000, and there is a not a multiple family situation.

To determine the maintenance award, the court must take 30 percent of the payor’s gross income and subtract 20 percent of the payee’s gross income. This amount, however, cannot be more than 40 percent of the combined gross income of both spouses.

In order to determine how long spousal maintenance will continue, the court will multiply the length of the marriage by the applicable factor listed in parentheses.

  • 0-5 years (.20);
  • 5-10 years (.40);
  • 10-15 years (.60); and
  • 15-20 years (.80).

In cases where the marriage lasted 20 years or longer, the court can order permanent maintenance that would cease at the death of one of the parties or maintenance for a time period that is equal to the length of the marriage.

Contact a Glen Ellyn, IL Alimony Lawyer

If you have any questions related to spousal maintenance, a skilled divorce attorney can help. To meet with one of the skilled DuPage County divorce attorneys at Mulyk Laho Law, LLC, call (630) 852-1100.



Posted in Divorce Finances, Illinois spousal support Tagged , , , , ,