Publications

Articles on Domestic Relations

Divorcing spouses must share the cost of attorney fees - even fees already paid

By Adam W. Lasker
November
2013
LawPulse
Page 554
The Illinois Supreme Court holds that a financially strapped divorcing wife can require her husband's lawyer to turn over already-paid fees to help finance her own legal expenses.

Family Law Practice-Management Tips

By H. Joseph Gitlin
January
2012
Column
Page 50
A veteran family lawyer offers rules for practice success.

Marital property should be valued as close as possible to the trial date in a bifurcated hearing

January
2012
Illinois Law Update
Page 16
he appropriate valuation date of marital property in a bifurcated dissolution hearing is the date of trial under the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution Act, according to a November 9, 2011, Illinois Fourth District Appellate Court ruling.

Rules committee hears proposals on divorce, criminal law, evidence issues

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
January
2012
LawPulse
Page 10
Proposals address financial disclosure in divorce, how judges describe defendants' decision not to testify, and how to handle inadvertent disclosure of documents.

Correspondence from Our Readers

December
2011
Column
Page 598
What judges know about family law.

Court affirms award of attorney’s fees in dissolution of marriage case

October
2011
Illinois Law Update
Page 496
The court found that, despite Petitioner Kristina Baniak's claims, the lower court had subject matter jurisdiction to hear the case regarding attorney's fees and that Baniak had waived all other issues raised in her appeal.

A Divorce Lawyer’s Guide to the Illinois Fraudulent Transfer Act

By Andrew R. Schwartz, Thomas J. Kanyock, and Karen Jeffreys
September
2011
Article
Page 462
Sometimes a dissipation-of-assets claim under the IMDMA isn't enough when a recalcitrant spouse hides assets. Never fear - the Illinois Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act is here.

Don’ts for Divorcing Parents

By H. Joseph Gitlin
April
2011
Column
Page 210
Lawyers should help clients keep children beyond the fray.

Errors and Omissions

December
2010
Column
Page 606
In re Marriage of Zells and not-yet-paid contingency fees; Foreclosure and divorce; and Who was that legal assistant?

Illinois Family Mediations: The Case Against Allowing GALs

By Suzanne J. Schmitz
November
2010
Article
Page 576
Because their presence may hinder family mediation, GALs should be excluded, the author argues.

Foreclosure and Divorce - Borrower’s Rights in the Face of Two “Wrongs”

By Joseph R. Fortunato and Steven B. Bashaw
October
2010
Column
Page 544
Should your divorcing, foreclosedupon client consolidate the foreclosure with the divorce?

Is a Not-Yet-Paid Contingent Fee Marital Property?

By H. Joseph Gitlin
October
2010
Column
Page 542
A divorcing lawyer has earned a big fee but hasn't been paid. Is the fee award marital property?

Getting fees from the other side in divorce

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2010
LawPulse
Page 446

Using Life Insurance to Secure a Maintenance Obligation

By Rob Shumaker
September
2010
Article
Page 466
What happens when a maintenance-paying spouse dies shortly after the judge signs the dissolution judgment? Is the maintenance recipient out of luck? That may depend on where the case arose.

2010 Spring Session Roundup

By Jim Covington
August
2010
Column
Page 404
A summary of key Illinois legislation passed this spring.

Splitting Up Without Divorce: A Legal-Separation Primer

By Roman J. Seckel
August
2010
Article
Page 416
A look at the basics of this little-used but sometimes just-right remedy.

Domestic Violence Act addendum

June
2010
Column
Page 282
More on the Illinois Domestic Violence Act.

When Property Becomes Income in Post-Judgment Divorce Litigation

By Reuben A. Bernick
June
2010
Article
Page 310
Are the assets your client got in divorce really "free and clear of all claims" by the ex-spouse? If they're retirement benefits and the claims are for child support, probably not.

See comments from our readers

April
2010
Column
Page 170
Habitability warranty disclaimers; FOIA attorney fees; family law attorney fees

Taking Charge in Matrimonial Cases

By H. Joseph Gitlin
April
2010
Column
Page 216
The winning lawyer is usually the one who takes the initiative.

Attorney Fees in Domestic Relations Cases: The 2009 Amendments to “Leveling of the Playing Field”

By the Attorney Fees Committee of the ISBA Family Law Section Council
March
2010
Article
Page 136
Learn about important changes to the attorney fee provisions of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act.

Leave time not marital property, high court holds

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
March
2010
LawPulse
Page 122
Unused leave days have only a "speculative" future value, the Illinois Supreme Court opines.

Collateral estoppel does not apply to release of mental health records if prior action related to relevance of records, but not possible violations stemming from release of those records.

January
2010
Illinois Law Update
Page 16
On October 23, 2009, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fifth District, affirmed in part and reversed in part the decision of the Circuit Court of St. Clair County to grant defendant's motion to dismiss a complaint relating to the release of mental health records in a divorce proceeding. 

Ethical Issues for Family Lawyers Under the New Rules of Professional Conduct

By Paulette M. Gray
January
2010
Article
Page 36
A look at some hypothetical but all-too-common family-law scenarios and how to approach them under the 2010 Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct.

Real Ethics and Courtesy for Divorce Lawyers

By H. Joseph Gitlin
January
2010
Column
Page 52
Not all ethical rules appear in the Rules of Professional Conduct.

New statute clarifies family law attorney-fee provisions

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2009
LawPulse
Page 490

Urban Legends About Family Law

By H. Joseph Gitlin
October
2009
Column
Page 528
Think men don't get custody or maintenance? Think again.

Changing Pension Beneficiaries After Divorce: It’s More Important After Kennedy

By Leon I. Finkel and Hailee R. Bloom
September
2009
Article
Page 462
Now ex-spouses must change the beneficiary designation after divorce or risk inadvertently enriching their former partners.

2009 Spring Session Roundup

By Jim Covington
August
2009
Column
Page 396
A summary of key legislation.

Marital and Nonmarital Property: Calculating Reimbursements Under the IMDMA

By Roman J. Seckel
August
2009
Article
Page 412
A spouse's nonmarital estate can be reimbursed for contributions to the marital estate - and vice versa - but determining the value of those contributions can be tricky.

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