Family Law Overview

Elmhurst Lawyers Practicing All Areas of Family Law: Divorce, Child Custody, Paternity, Guardianship, Adoption

The law has a stake in our identities and family relationships from cradle to grave. From the time that Illinois, or any other state, issues a birth certificate, society spells out through laws our rights and responsibilities as members of families. At times of family change, such as marriage, divorce or adoption, people often turn to a family law attorney for legal protection and guidance and to facilitate transactions such as guardianships.

At the Law Offices of Laura M. Urbik Kern, our attorneys are knowledgeable, experienced and compassionate. Most of all, we are committed to putting children's and families' well-being at the forefront of our law practice. We handle Illinois family law matters and other legal matters, including the following:

Prenuptial agreements and postnuptial agreements: Before marriage, or at any time during a marriage, a couple can make their own "contract" or agreement spelling out how they will divide property in the event of a divorce and how they will manage assets during a marriage.

Divorce: All divorces must address the question of property division. Where there are children, a divorce must include child custody and child support orders. We will help you navigate all the divorce procedures correctly and can help you amicably resolve high conflict and high net worth divorce actions smoothly and efficiently.

Child custody and parental responsibilities: Parental responsibilities are just as important as parental rights when it comes to custody and visitation of children during and after a divorce, or when unmarried parents are separated. We can help you work out custody arrangements that fit your family dynamic.

Child support: State guidelines generally spell out how child support will be calculated according to the income of the nonresidential (or noncustodial) parent.

Property division/spousal support: Property division and spousal support are often considered in relationship to each other. A dependent spouse may agree to accept property in lieu of spousal maintenance or alimony, for example.

Property division FAQ's: There are many questions to answer regarding property division for most people approaching divorce. Talk to an experienced attorney or personalized advice and representation.

Paternity: A child's father may be legally determined through legal action and through DNA testing when parents are not married to each other.

Adoption: By way of adoption, a child is transferred to a new family line, with all the rights of a natural-born child of that family.

Mediation, collaborative and cooperative law: In mediation (facilitated by a neutral mediator) or in collaborative four-way meetings (including a divorcing couple and each person's lawyer), couples can control and guide their own property settlement and child custody agreements without harmful adversarial litigation.

Conflict resolution: While divorce is almost never a happy event, the legal process of divorce can be handled in less adversarial ways than through traditional litigation.

Collaborative law: In collaborative law settings, divorcing spouses and their respective attorneys craft divorce settlement agreements in private and on the parties' timelines.

Grandparents’ rights: There are a number of legal ways in which a grandparent can strengthen or solidify bonds with − and responsibilities for − a grandchild.

Juvenile law: Whether your teenager is arrested for assault or you must defend yourself as a parent against unfounded accusations of abuse and neglect, contact a lawyer at the Law Offices of Laura M. Urbik Kern.

DCFS: It is critical if you are notified of an investigation, or your child is a part of an investigation as a victim or as the accused, that you consult with an attorney as soon as possible before anyone from DCFS (Department of Children and Family Services) interviews you, as soon as you have been notified of an investigation.

Traffic tickets: A speeding ticket for a teenage driver is not simply a minor technicality to be resolved by paying a fine. It is usually worth your while to enlist the assistance of an attorney to help the young driver obtain the least punitive outcome to prevent driver's license suspension or higher auto insurance rates.

Guardianship: When a child's parents cannot, or will not, care for a child for any reason, the court may appoint a guardian such as a grandparent or other relative or friend of the family to take legal responsibility for the child or, if an adult is disabled and unable to manage his or her personal or financial affairs, a guardianship may be appropriate.

Real estate: When changes in family structure require you to buy or sell your home or commercial real estate, our law offices can help negotiate buy-sell agreements and represent you at closing.

To schedule a consultation regarding any legal matter affecting your children or your family in Illinois, call or e-mail the Law Offices of Laura M. Urbik Kern.