Did you know that in Illinois it could technically be a crime to cheat on your spouse? In fact, if the “other man” or “woman” knows that you are married, he or she could also be breaking the law. According to the Illinois Criminal Code, adultery—both for a married person and a person who knows his or her partner is married—is considered a misdemeanor criminal offense “if the behavior is open and notorious.” The caveat was originally intended to prevent philanderers from publicly flaunting their infidelity by living with someone who was not their spouse and, as a result, offending the sensibilities of society and degrading the institution of marriage. By the letter of the law, this would even apply to people who are currently in the process of a divorce.

As you might expect, law enforcement officers and prosecutors, by and large, have little interest in looking to convict those who cheat on their spouses. To illustrate, the last known example of an adultery charge being filed happened 20 years ago, and Cook County prosecutors declined to pursue the case.

Marital Infidelity

This is not to suggest that adultery is not a problem in countless marriages around the country. For many couples, a spouse’s unfaithful behavior is often an indication of serious issues that could doom the relationship. Cheating spouses, however, tend to leave inadvertent clues of their infidelities. While a warning sign is not the same as proof—especially if it only a single indication—but it might be time to sit up and take notice if you notice changes in your partner’s routine. There may be reason for concern if your spouse:

  • Shows a sudden, unexplained interest in his or her appearance and wardrobe – A New Year’s resolution is one thing; joining a gym for the first time in a decade “just because” may be something else;
  • Guards his or her cell phone – He or she never cared before, but now the phone goes everywhere with your spouse. Some people are more private than others, but if he or she will not let you touch his or her phone, there may be a darker reason;
  • Claims that his or her phone “dies” more often – You have a good idea of how vigilant your spouse is about charging his or her phone. If he or she goes out “with friends” and his or her phone “dies” more than it has in the past, you may not be getting the whole story;
  • Initiates a change in your sex life – A couple’s life together will change over time but rarely will such changes happen quickly. If your spouse has shown a sudden lack of interest in sex, he or she may be getting it from someone new. Conversely, an unexplained increase in his or her sex drive could be an indication of its own—either as a distraction or a symptom of guilt;
  • Goes silent on social media – If your spouse once actively posted on Facebook or Instagram but inexplicably stopped, he or she could be doing things you are not supposed to know about;
  • Shows major personality changes – You know your partner better than anyone, and you probably have a good idea of when something is wrong. If things feel “different,” they very well might be.

It is important to remember that there could be perfectly innocent reasons for many of these indicators, but if the signs are beginning to add up, it may be time for a difficult conversation.

For some couples, such a discussion could lead them to the decision to end their marriage. If this is the case for you, contact an experienced Rolling Meadows divorce attorney to learn more about your available options. Call 847-253-3100 and get the help you need today.






Posted in Divorce | Tagged , , , , ,

divorce, Rolling Meadows divorce attorneyWhile the divorce rate has been steadily declining for most age groups, those nearing retirement age (the Baby Boomers) have seen a drastic increase over the last couple of decades. In some ways, this could be a positive thing; it attests to the improved independence of women and the improved quality and longevity of life. There are some potential drawbacks, especially when it comes to retirement. If you are planning on divorcing later in life, it is important to be aware of what may lie ahead.

Divorce Later in Life Can Impact Retirement

Most couples who have been together for two or more decades have prepared for retirement together. This means they have, in many cases, created a pension plan that is designed to support one set of bills, one mortgage, and one set of living expenses. When divorce occurs near the retirement stage, this can throw everything into disarray. The retirement plan must now be divided, and each party will have their own set of bills and living expenses. There is a good chance there will not be enough to go around, and with less time to recover from this financial hit, later-life divorcees may be at serious risk for divorce-induced poverty.

Dividing Your Retirement Plan in Divorce

Like most assets in an Illinois divorce, retirement plans and pension plans are split between the two parties. Despite the common misconception, this does not necessarily mean assets will be split evenly down the middle. Instead, Illinois divorcees divide marital property equitably (fairly), which can be a concept that creates a lot of confusion and contention. To ensure you get your fair share, contact an experienced divorce lawyer for assistance.

Preventing Divorce-Induced Poverty

In addition to having an attorney on your side during the divorce, you may want to do some investigating of your own. Find out what your expenses will be and compare it to your estimated settlement amount. Do the two line up, or is there a major disparity? If you find the latter to be true, it may be worthwhile to sit down and consider some alternative options. Can you wait for the divorce and work on your debts? Is it possible to still divorce but delay your retirement so that you can put more money aside? Could you take on boarders or dog-sit to make up any income deficits? Only you know which options will work best for your situation. Just be sure you have carefully considered each one.

Contact a Divorce Lawyer

If you are prepared to move forward with your divorce, or just need some general advice on how to proceed, contact an experienced Rolling Meadows divorce attorney. Schedule your free initial consultation by calling Cosley Law Office at 847-253-3100 today.




Posted in Division of Property, Divorce | Tagged , , , , ,

order, Arlington Heights family law attorneyMost of us have heard stories about parents who for one reason or another—and often many reasons combined—were the subject of an investigation by child protective agencies. It is possible, as you are most likely aware, for such investigations to result in the termination of parental rights if the situation is found to present serious danger to the children. Agencies like the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) are tasked with keeping children safe even if it means separating them from their parents in some cases.

While protecting children is certainly an admirable and necessary goal, is it possible for agencies and family courts to go too far? A recent decision by a family court judge in New York has raised that exact question.

Limits on Future Pregnancy

Judge Patricia Gallaher issued a court order in December that directed a Rochester, NY, woman to avoid getting pregnant again. The woman—a known prostitute—had already lost custody of her four children based on findings of neglect. In her order, the judge stated that the woman was not to get pregnant again until she had regained custody of her infant son.

The judge indicated that her order was meant to increase the mother’s chances of rehabilitation from drug addiction. She maintained that if the woman were to have another baby, it would decrease the likelihood of her getting clean and being reunited with her little boy. The order also mandated that the state cover the mother’s birth control expenses. The consequences for failing to comply with the order were not made clear, but the judge stated that the woman would not face jail time for getting pregnant.

Critical Response

Many in the legal community believe that the order violates the mother’s constitutional rights. It is one thing to limit a person’s parental responsibilities and parenting time, they contend, but quite another to decide whether or not a person is allowed to procreate. According to various reports, the woman intends to appeal the ruling, and the New York Civil Liberties Union may offer assistance in the appeal. Similar orders have been overturned in the past, but it remains to be seen how this situation will ultimately unfold.

Protecting Parents’ Rights

At Cosley Law Office, we understand the importance of protecting children. Terminating a person’s parental rights is an extremely serious matter and must be done in accordance with existing laws and legal precedents. If you are the subject of a DCFS investigation and are concerned that your rights may be in jeopardy, contact an experienced Arlington Heights family law attorney immediately. Call 847-253-3100 for a free consultation today.





Posted in Parental Responsibilities, Parenting Time | Tagged , , , , ,