Family Law

At Jakubs ∙ Wigoda, LLP, our attorneys understand the emotional impact that family law disputes have on you and your loved ones. Our goal is to help you optimally resolve your legal issues by providing professional representation combined with personal attention, honest advice, and steadfast support. With decades of combined family law experience, we are qualified to handle litigation, mediation, and arbitration in the following matters:

Divorce / Dissolution of Marriage

The period before, during, and after a divorce is often emotionally traumatic for all involved; however, over the course of this difficult time, you must make many life-impacting decisions that will affect you and your family for years to come. We strive to minimize the stress and anxiety of divorce, avoiding unnecessary conflict and tension whenever possible while ensuring that our clients' rights and interests are protected every step of the way.

A divorce case is commenced by the filing of a document entitled "Petition for Dissolution of Marriage." If the parties work together, a settlement may be reached before the case is even filed or proceeds to court. However, if a mutually satisfactory agreement cannot be achieved, we will file or respond to the divorce petition, which stipulates the grounds for divorce, and all related issues, such as property distribution, matters of child custody, child support, and maintenance.

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Property Division

Illinois is an equitable property state, which means that property acquired during a marriage should be divided equally upon divorce unless it is unfair to do so. We understand that it can be stressful to divide personal property, as well as other investments and assets, such as retirement accounts, stock options, and real estate. While minimizing contention between divorcing spouses is important, it is also essential to make a clear and effective claim to recoverable property. Our attorneys will take the time to thoroughly assess assets, debts, and income, identifying the issues at hand so that we may best protect our clients' rights and security after divorce.

 

Illinois is an equitable property division state, which means that property acquired during a marriage should be divided equitably upon divorce. We understand that it can be stressful to divide personal property, as well as other investments and assets, such as retirement accounts, stock options, and real estate. While minimizing contention between divorcing spouses is important, it is also essential to make a clear and effective claim to that which each party is entitled. Our attorneys will take the time to thoroughly assess assets, debts, and income, identifying the issues at hand so that we may best protect our clients' rights and security before and after divorce.

 

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Custody & Support

When parents divorce, child custody and support must be determined. Often, parents work out these arrangements between themselves, either voluntarily or with the assistance of their attorneys or a mediator; however, when they are unable to reach a decision, the court may intervene and make a decision based on the best interests of the child. Whether the case is straightforward or complex, our goal is to help our clients achieve arrangements that fit their needs and objectives, whether through mediation or litigation. Please see our frequently asked questions page for more information about these issues.

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Interstate Custody Litigation

Child custody issues are often difficult even when the case is confined to the state of Illinois; however, when a custody case crosses state lines, additional issues and conflicts may arise. Furthermore, divorced parents living in different states must deal with the regulations governing interstate child custody laws. Our attorneys frequently handle interstate custody jurisdiction matters, such as obtaining child support from a parent in another state, as well as custody and visitation issues. We have also handled many custody disputes in which state jurisdiction was at issue.

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Maintenance

Spousal maintenance (sometimes referred to as alimony) is used to enable a divorcing spouse to gain training or to maintain a balanced standard of living until he or she becomes self-supporting following a divorce. The amount and duration of support is determined on a case-by case basis, taking into account such factors as the length of the marriage, the age and health of the parties, and the needs of each spouse. We assist clients in obtaining fair and balanced support arrangements. Please see our frequently asked questions page for more information about how courts determine maintenance awards.

 

Spousal maintenance (formerly referred to as alimony) is used to enable a divorcing spouse to gain training or to maintain a balanced standard of living until he or she becomes self-supporting following a divorce."The amount and duration of support is determined on a case-by case basis, taking into account such factors as the length of the marriage, the age and health of the parties, and the needs of each spouse."We assist clients in obtaining fair and balanced support arrangements. Please see our frequently asked questions page for more information about how courts determine maintenance awards.

 

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Domestic Violence

We represent clients involving domestic violence, and recognize when it is necessary to obtain court orders in order to protect our clients and their children. A protective order requires the spouse (or person with a special relationship) to obey certain rules before or after a court hearing, such as the divorce or custody hearing, and may limit contact or prohibit contact entirely. We also have experience in cases involving circumstances that warrant our client obtaining exclusive possession of their residence and can provide advice and proceed with this course of action if necessary.

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Removal

Our attorneys have experience representing clients in removal cases in which one parent seeks to remove a child to another state. These cases may concern remarriage to someone who lives in another state, the procurement of a new job in another state, neighborhood and school comparisons, and the duration and difficulty of travel. We help parents establish their rights and responsibilities in a removal situation, and work to make the process as smooth as possible for the child or children involved.

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Modifications

Even years after a marriage has ended, events may transpire that affect the terms of divorce agreements. When circumstances change, a party can petition for a post-judgment modification. For example, an existing agreement may be amended if a custody arrangement becomes detrimental to a child, or if a parent remarries, moves, or increases his or her earnings.

 

Even years after a marriage has ended, events may transpire that affect the terms of divorce agreements. When circumstances change, a party can petition for a post-judgment modification. For example, an existing agreement may be amended if a custody arrangement becomes detrimental to a child, or if a parent remarries, moves, or increases his or her earnings.

 

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Paternity

Establishing legal paternity gives a father certain rights and responsibilities in regard to his child. For example, a paternity action may be brought in order to impose a child support obligation, establish a right to inheritance, or gain or prohibit custody or visitation rights. Our attorneys regularly help clients assert, challenge, or establish paternity depending on their needs.

 

Establishing legal paternity gives a father certain rights and responsibilities in regard to his child. For example, a paternity action may be brought in order to impose a child support obligation, establish a right to inheritance, or gain or prohibit custody or visitation rights. Our attorneys regularly help clients assert, challenge, or establish paternity depending on their needs.

 

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Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreements

Our firm helps clients create prenuptial and postnuptial agreements that protect assets in the event of a divorce. Prenuptial agreements allow those who are contemplating marriage to determine how their property will be distributed in the event of a divorce."Postnuptial agreements also outline how property will be divided, but are undertaken after a couple is already joined in marriage.

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Jakubs • Wigoda, LLP is located in Chicago, IL and serves clients in and around Chicago, Evanston, Wilmette, Kenilworth, Lincolnwood, Golf, Morton Grove, Niles, Glenview, Glencoe, Techny, Park Ridge, Northbrook, Skokie, Des Plaines, and Elk Grove Village.

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