Category Archives: Property

A Party’s Bonus May Not Be Marital Property

One of the primary issues in a dissolution proceeding is the division of the parties’ property. To resolve this issue, the trial court characterizes property as either martial property or non-marital property of either spouse. Marital property is all property acquired by either spouse subsequent  to the marriage, except for certain enumerated exceptions.  The trial […]

Purchasing a Home in Contemplation of Marriage

Today, people are marrying later and later in life.  In 1950, the average age of a groom was 23 years old while the average age of the blushing bride was 20.  Today, on average, a man marries for the first time at the age of 28 and a woman marries for the first time at […]

What the Kardashian Pregnancy Could Mean to the Divorce Property Division

Sarane C. Siewerth Contributed to this Blog Post A big news story recently has been the announcement that Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are expecting a baby together. The announcement is inevitably followed by the statement that Kim is still married to Kris Humphries despite filing for divorce in October 2011 after 72 days of […]

Instant Replay Creates All Kinds of Issues

Article originally appeared in the November 27, 2012 issue of the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin written by Thomas F. Villanti and Evan D. Whitfield Major League Baseball (MLB) is deciding this off-season whether to extend instant replay to other areas of the game.  Meanwhile, former LA. Dodgers owner Frank McCourt is facing his own instant […]

Top Ten Myths in Illinois Divorce Cases [Myth #3]

Myth: My spouse’s marital misconduct or bad behavior will help me in my marital case. If a husband has a girlfriend, or a wife spends money without any budget or regard for their finances, are those factors things that a court would consider in the division of property? Generally not. Our statute very specifically says […]

Top Ten Myths in Illinois Divorce Cases [Myth #2]

Myth: Illinois is a 50/50 property division state. Probably one of the most commonly asked questions I receive from clients is, “Is Illinois a 50/50 property division state?” It can be, but not necessarily. 50/50 states are known as community property states; California, Louisiana and Wisconsin are examples. Illinois is what is called an equitable […]

Pet Ownership in Illinois Divorce Cases

Pet owners love their pets and view them as an important part of their family.  Pet care is a multi-billion dollar industry, as evidenced by the increase in pet insurance, pet attire, specially made pet food, regular pet grooming services, and the number of pet pictures owners carry in their wallets.  About a third of […]

Invalidating a Prenuptial Agreement in Illinois

When a party desires to have a prenuptial agreement held invalid under Illinois law, the first factor that must be considered is the date of execution.  Different standards will apply depending on when the parties entered into the agreement.  The principles of the Illinois Uniform Premarital Agreement Act (“IUPAA”) govern any agreement executed on or […]

Retaining Your Non Marital Property After Divorce

Most people contemplating or going through a divorce are looking to retain as much of their property as possible.  That property is divided into two classifications: marital and non-marital property.  Marital property in Illinois generally consists of property acquired during a marriage.  Illinois divorce law requires the equitable sharing of all marital property.  That means […]

Alimony in Lieu of Property

Under Illinois divorce law, the so-called “equitable distribution” principle (enacted in 1977) allows courts to allocate marital property in myriad ways.  The asset mix in the “marital pot” in numerous cases, however, does not lend itself to a percentage division that a court is likely to order (or on which the parties might ideally agree).  […]