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Wheaton family law attorney

According to a study conducted by the Pew Research Center, there has been an increase in unmarried but cohabiting parents over the last two decades. Since 1997, the number of cohabiting parents has risen to 35 percent. The practice of cohabitation prior to, or rather than, marriage has become a practice popular with the millennial generation. The reasons for the rise are primarily economic, plus the desire to avoid the constraints of a legally binding marriage. The practice of cohabitation has some similarity to the old tradition of common law marriage. This was the practice of two individuals cohabiting together and, in some cases, enjoying the rights and benefits of marriage, but without official recognition from the state.

Does a common law marriage, or a cohabiting couple, get the same rights as a legal marriage, and what rights does a cohabiting parent have if a separation occurs?

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Common Reasons Why Marriages End in Divorce

Wheaton divorce lawyer marital difficultiesFew people enter a marriage expecting their relationship to end, but unfortunately, divorce is all too common. Marriage takes a lot of work, and spouses will need to put in time and effort throughout their years of partnership if they want to keep their relationship strong. There are a wide variety of reasons why marriages break down, but here are some of the most common issues that can lead to marital difficulties, and eventually to divorce:

  • Money problems - Financial issues can be one of the primary sources of disagreement in a marriage. When couples do not discuss their outstanding debt, including student loans and credit card debts, before getting married, they may find that these obligations affect their plans for buying a house, having children, or maintaining the standard of living they expect. Couples also often disagree about budgeting, expenses, and purchases, and this can be a major source of stress in their relationship.
  • Changing plans and expectations - People’s ideas of what they want out of their life can often change as they get older, and this may lead spouses to grow apart as they discover they have differing goals or plans for the future.
  • Failure to stay connected and committed - A healthy relationship requires commitment from both parties. Unfortunately, people often become complacent in their marriage, failing to regularly communicate with their spouse and be there for them. 
  • Lack of intimacy - A failure to regularly communicate often leads to a lack of a physical and emotional connection as well. When a couple becomes little more than roommates rather than partners, this can make divorce likely.
  • Religion - Spouses who do not share the same beliefs may be able to overcome these differences early in their relationships, but these issues can create a rift later in a marriage, especially when disagreements arise related to family expectations, holiday celebrations, traditions, and how children will be raised.
  • Family issues - Relationship issues can result when a spouse does not get along with their in-laws or when they are not prepared for a certain level of involvement in their lives from other family members. Children can also affect a marriage, especially when parents focus on their children at the expense of their own relationship.

Contact a Wheaton Family Law Attorney

Each of these issues on their own may not spell the end of a marriage, but the combination of multiple factors, along with other reasons that may be unique to each individual situation, can cause the irretrievable breakdown of a relationship. If you have reached the point where you feel that ending your marriage is the best solution for you, the attorneys of Anderson & Associates, P.C. can help you understand your rights and work with you to complete the legal requirements for dissolving your marriage. Contact a DuPage County divorce lawyer at 630-653-9400 to schedule a free consultation.

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4 Legal Issues to Consider Before Getting Married

Wheaton prenuptial agreement lawyerWhen a couple decides to get married, they will be uniting their lives and forming a legal partnership. Unfortunately, as statistics show, nearly half of marriages end in divorce in the United States. There are a variety of reasons for this, but since the possibility of divorce exists, couples can take steps to protect themselves by educating themselves about the law and planning for both a successful marriage and a potential divorce. Before getting married, they should be sure to address the following issues:

  1. Finances - How will income and expenses be shared after getting married? Does either spouse have significant debt? Will the spouses share bank accounts and credit cards? It is important for both spouses to be on the same page about their budget, their spending habits, and their financial goals, ensuring that they do not encounter any surprises after getting married.
  1. Property ownership - Does either spouse own valuable property or have significant financial assets? Will the couple be living in a home previously owned by one spouse? Does either spouse have ownership interests in a business? Spouses should be clear about what they own, how ownership of property will be handled going forward, and what will happen to this property if their relationship ever ends.
  1. Estate planning - After getting married, will the spouses’ wills need to be updated? Do they plan to give each other power of attorney? Do they have methods in place to protect their assets near the end of their life? Does either spouse need to put provisions in place to provide for children from a previous relationship? Couples should make sure they have addressed these issues and understand each other’s wishes regarding their estate.
  1. Prenuptial agreement - While planning for divorce before getting married may not be very romantic, having an agreement in place for how things can be handled if the relationship ends can alleviate a great deal of stress. Premarital agreements can be especially helpful for spouses who own a business, bring significant assets into a marriage, or want to ensure that their children will have financial resources no matter what happens in the future.

Contact a DuPage County Family Law Attorney

If you have any questions about the legal issues that you should consider before you get married, or if you want to make sure your family will have legal and financial protections in the future, the skilled attorneys of Anderson & Associates, P.C. can help you meet your legal requirements and protect your rights and interests. Contact our Wheaton family law firm at 630-653-9400 to schedule a free consultation.

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