"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." - Albert Einstein.

"The rules of court we have promulgated are not aspirational. They are not suggestions. They have the force of law, and the presumption must be that they will be obeyed and enforced as written." Bright v. Dicke, 652 N.E.2d 275 (1995)

"[E]veryone is presumed to know the law and ignorance of the law excuses no one" Jones v. Board of Education of the City of Chicago, 2013 IL App (1st) 122437

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In Camera Interviews Of A Child In An Illinois Custody Case

By Russell Knight | August 3, 2022
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Child talks to judge in an Illinois divorce

The wishes of a minor child are both the most important thing and the least important thing in an Illinois child custody dispute. A judge has told me, “A child gets a voice but not a choice.” Children have opinions but those opinions have weight appropriate to the maturity of the child. Otherwise, the parent who gave the child ice cream for dinner would always be the custodial parent. So,…

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Is Maintenance (Formerly Known As Alimony) Tax Deductible In Illinois?

By Russell Knight | July 31, 2022
Is alimony tax deductible?

The more money you make, the more you realize that there is the price you pay for things…and the price you pay for things after taxes. The taxability (or lack thereof) of maintenance (formerly known as alimony) should impact the settlement negotiations of your divorce as you may have to write one check to your spouse…and another check to the IRS. Who Pays The Taxes On Maintenance During Or After…

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Can I Write A Letter To My Illinois Divorce Judge?

By Russell Knight | July 30, 2022
Letters to judges in Illinois

To the non-lawyer, litigation looks a lot like homework. In divorce litigation, you prepare paperwork, submit it to the judge, the judge reads the paperwork and then says “good job” or “sorry, I don’t agree.” Judges like information. Judges like written information. Hmm…I bet the judge would really like a letter explaining what’s really going on in my Illinois divorce. You are trying to be helpful, which is commendable, but…

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How Does Length Of Marriage Impact An Illinois Divorce?

By Russell Knight | July 30, 2022
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How long do I have to be married for a 50/50 split of assets?

The first question I ask a potential client is “how long have you been married?” The length of the marriage impacts everything about an Illinois divorce. A short marriage will cause a judge to shrug and think, “They barely even know each other,” while a long marriage will result in pronouncements of permanent support and complete division of all assets. Length Of Marriage And Maintenance In Illinois Short marriages meant…

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Bad Behavior And “Unclean Hands” In An Illinois Divorce

By Russell Knight | July 29, 2022
Unclean Hands In An Illinois Divorce

Whenever I tell people I am a divorce lawyer they say, “You must have a lot of stories.” I do have a lot of stories, but I cannot tell any of those stories because of attorney-client privilege and general human decency. Sadly, human decency can be rare in a divorce. In fact, bad behavior is rampant during divorce litigation. The opposing side’s prior poor behavior make it very tempting to…

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