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Family LawThe newsletter of ISBA’s Section on Family Law

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Newsletter articles from 2008

An analysis of the court’s authority to order the sale of property prior to entry of judgment By Michael DiDomenico June 2008 The authority of the trial court to order the sale of property during the pendency of a case is frequently litigated in domestic relations matters.
The “Best” lesson By Paul Osborn August 2008 The January 2007 issue of the Family Law Section’s newsletter contained an article written by the newsletter’s current co-editor, Matthew Kirsh, analyzing the Second District’s opinion published in November of 2006 in In re the Marriage of Best, 859 N.E.2d 173, 307 Ill.Dec. 173 (2nd Dis., 2006)
Circuit Court of Cook County’s Expedited Child Support Program By Yehuda Lebovits June 2008 The Illinois Supreme Court created the Expedited Child Support Program in 1992 when it approved the Plan submitted by the Chief Judge of the Circuit Court pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 100.1.
Class action challenges Illinois DCFS investigators’ threats in the United States Supreme Court By Angela Peters March 2008 In 1997, a class of parents and child-serving professionals filed a lawsuit against the Department of Children and Family Services, seeking extensive reform of DCFS investigations, based on violations of due process.
Crucial Health Insurance provision to keep in mind for your clients . . . By Tiffany Alexander December 2008 Negotiating a settlement in a divorce case is no small accomplishment.
Disposition of the marital residence in troubled economic times By Hon. Nancy J. Katz November 2008 Falling real estate values and increasing mortgage foreclosures are taking a toll on divorcing middle class families. This is particularly true when the primary asset of a family is the marital residence.
Evaluating the ethics of ADR programs By Kurt Kamrath December 2008 The practice of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is rife with ethical dilemmas. It does not take much time in the field before a practitioner will find a conflict between two central aspects of ADR.
IRAs and child support: O’Daniel, Takata and the slippery slope By Alison G. Turoff August 2008 In June 2008, two different appellate courts made two disparate rulings regarding child support and IRAs.
Is it a claim or a new action? Characterization of post-judgment petitions in family law cases affects appealability By Linda S. Kagan February 2008 Given the continued dispute about whether post-judgment petitions are new claims or new actions, it might be a prudent idea to obtain a Rule 304(a) finding and file a notice of appeal as to each order one wants to appeal, alert the appellate court by way of motion that other claims or petitions are pending in the trial court and later, move to consolidate appeals filed along the way.
It’s not nice to fool with Orders to Withhold Income By David N. Schaffer February 2008 By playing really cute with the provisions of a child support withholding notice, an employer was hit with a $1.1M judgment for penalties.
Message from the Chair By Paulette Gray November 2008 Introduction: At the risk of being called a “Star Wars Geek” I continue my Yoda-inspired columns.
Message from the Chair By Paulette Gray October 2008 Introduction: Those of you who made it to the end of my last column may remember my promise to provide more “Lessons from Yoda” in future columns.
Message from the Chair By Paulette Gray August 2008 Introduction: It is with great honor that I assume the role of Chair of the 2008-09 Family Law Section Council.
Message from the Chair By Gregory A. Scott June 2008 For as long as I can remember, and many times since obtaining my license to practice law, my father would always tell me that practicing law is a profession and not a job.
Message from the Chair By Gregory A. Scott May 2008 For many years, I have been using a phrase in my practice that is the only explanation for many of the actions of my clients, the opponent and/or opponent’s Counsel.
Message from the Chair By Gregory A. Scott March 2008 A message from Section Chair Gregory Scott.
Message from the Chair By Gregory A. Scott January 2008 As 2007 comes to a close and 2008 begins it is a good time for all attorneys, especially family law attorneys, to step back and examine the previous year before and hopefully refresh once again their desire to continue to practice law in the field of Family Law.
The Miller case: Custody dispute—Limiting the number of witnesses—Proper offer of proof By Charles R. Winkler January 2008 Dustin Miller and his wife Bethany were engaged in a custody dispute. In February of 2004 a hearing took place in Quincy, Illinois and Dustin won.
Motions to stay pending appeal in custody cases By Matthew A. Kirsh November 2008 As most practitioners know, the conclusion of a contested custody trial is not, by a long shot, the end of the litigation.
Practice Trap: Life insurance provisions that secure child support obligation in marital settlement agreements can cause drafting and enforcement problems By Hon. Brian L. McPheters December 2008 Marital Settlement agreements incorporated into judgments of dissolution of marriage frequently and wisely utilize life insurance to secure child support obligations in the event of the death of a parent.
Public Act 95-685 and its impact on family law By Paulette Gray May 2008 On October 23, 2007, the Governor signed into law the most comprehensive package of legislation affecting child support enforcement since the introduction of mandatory child support withholdings through the State Disbursement Unit.
Representing the Hearing-Impaired Client in Child Custody Cases By Robin R. Miller October 2008 I recently experienced the challenge and the privilege of representing a hearing-impaired client in a child custody proceeding.
A review of judicial gloss on the statutory provisions governing contribution to attorney fees under the IMDMA By David H. Hopkins January 2008 The enactment known as “The ‘Leveling of the Playing Field’ in Divorce Litigation Amendments” (P.A. 89-712) (“LPF Act”), effective June 1, 1997, was in fact a complete overhaul of the fee provisions of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (“IMDMA”), 750 ILCS 5/101 et seq., one that included major changes to the rules for contribution.
The role of a Guardian Ad Litem in litigation: Not just a witness By Thomas A. Else J.D. and Sean McCumber J.D. September 2008 The role a Guardian Ad Litem in custody litigation is sometimes confused as to whether the Guardian (GAL) may be allowed to both testify as a witness and to advocate on behalf of the children as an attorney participating in the litigation.
Supreme Court denies review in case that leaves families defenseless and without due process By Diane L. Redleaf September 2008 It seems like Due Process 101: the State cannot deprive an individual of liberty without any basis and without providing a process by which the deprivation can be challenged.
A tax on real estate transfers pursuant to divorce—In Chicago now and coming soon to a municipality near you!! By Barbara Downs November 2008 On October 6, 2008 the City of Chicago Finance Committee voted unanimously to support Alderman Burke’s proposed ordinance to exempt transfers of the marital home pursuant to a divorce or legal separation judgment from payment of the Chicago Real Estate Property Transfer Tax.
A tax on real estate transfers pursuant to divorce—In Chicago now and coming soon to a municipality near you!! By Barbara Downs October 2008 We recently had a horrendous case involving the enforcement of the Chicago Real Estate Transfer Tax in an old divorce case. First, some background.
Vision Point v. Haas: Breathing room For litigants on Requests to Admit By Steven G. Pietrick March 2008 On September 20, 2007, the Illinois Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Vision Point of Sale, Inc. v. Haas, ___ Ill.2d___, 2007 WL 2729322 (No. 103140 September 20, 2007),1 providing what many in the legal community perceive as a merciful relaxation of the overly strict interpretation of Rule 216’s requirements and the near-draconian effects which can result.