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How Do You Continue Your Health Insurance After Divorce?Divorce changes your life in many small ways that you do not consider when you start the process. Health insurance is a good example of this because spouses are commonly on the same insurance plan. You have little to worry about if your spouse was on your employer’s insurance plan. Your children can remain on your family plan, or you can switch to an individual plan if you do not have children. If you were on your spouse’s insurance plan, you may be able to receive insurance through your own employer. Your divorce makes you immediately eligible to enroll in or change your insurance plan. If health insurance through work is not an option, you have other options that you need to consider.

Continuation Coverage

Illinois law allows you to stay on your former spouse’s health insurance for a limited time. If you are younger than 55 at the time of your divorce, you can continue the coverage for two years. If you are older than 55, you can continue the coverage until you are eligible for Medicare. There are several requirements for receiving continuation coverage:

  • Your spouse’s insurance must be a group plan.
  • You have 30 days after your divorce judgment to notify your spouse’s employer of your intention to continue coverage.
  • You must pay the same premium as you would if you were an employee on the plan.

Continuation coverage is only a temporary solution and may be difficult to afford if you have a low income. However, it prevents a gap in your health insurance coverage and buys you time to come up with a long-term solution.

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Three Financials Disputes That Can Affect Your DivorceMoney is a common issue for married couples to argue over. So, it should be no surprise that financial strife is one of the most common reasons that people give for getting divorced. Unfortunately, these same money problems can continue during your divorce negotiations. Because it is important to come out of a divorce with financial security, you should understand how different financial problems from your marriage can affect your divorce. Here are three examples of monetary disputes that divorcing spouses may have:

  1. Heavy Debt: The stress of being unable to keep up with debt payments can break your marriage. Part of your divorce will be figuring out how to divide your marital debts, which you share just like with marital properties. You can divide the debt based on which of you was more responsible for each debt or which of you is more capable of repaying it. Your divorce agreement should state which debts each of you are responsible for in case a creditor comes after you because your former spouse failed to repay the debt.
  2. Different Spending Habits: Sometimes, your attitude towards how you spend your money can lead to disagreement, even if it does not cause problems with debt. You or your spouse may be more comfortable making big purchases, spending on luxury items, and going into short-term debt. This can cause a disagreement during your divorce on what are necessary expenses and how much spousal maintenance one of you should pay. Creating a responsible budget is an important part of life after divorce, and you should not be subsidizing your former spouse’s reckless spending.
  3. Financial Infidelity: A person commits financial infidelity when they hide major expenditures or assets from their spouse. The betrayal of trust can destroy your marriage if you discover financial infidelity, but there are also practical concerns you must address during your divorce. Are you liable for debts that your spouse created without your knowledge? Is your spouse still trying to hide assets that should be included in the division of marital property? You need to investigate the extent of the damage that your spouse’s financial infidelity has caused.

Contact a McHenry County Divorce Attorney

Divorce is a chance to improve your financial future, whether you believe that your spouse’s decisions were harming you or you are trying to break bad habits from your marriage. A Crystal Lake, Illinois, divorce lawyer at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, can discuss how to stabilize your finances after a divorce. Schedule a free consultation by calling 815-338-3838.

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Should You Be Flexible with Your Parenting Plan?A parenting plan is a detailed outline that divorced parents use to determine how they will share their responsibility for their children. It can take great effort to create a parenting plan, particularly if the parents disagree on how to divide parenting time and raise the children. Once you have hammered out and approved a parenting agreement, does that mean you should never deviate from it? There are some situations when being flexible is best for your children and beneficial to you and your co-parent. In other situations, it is important to defend the integrity of the plan.

When to Be Flexible

Co-parents sometimes discover that they need to adjust their parenting plan because it is not working the way they intended. You need to request a modification of your parenting plan in court if you want to make a permanent change to the plan. What if you have an unusual situation in which deviating from your parenting plan this one time makes the most sense? This most often occurs with parenting time schedules, such as when:

  • A parent is not available during their normal parenting time
  • A child’s schedule temporarily conflicts with parenting time
  • An emergency occurs and a parent needs someone to look after the children

It is impractical to go to court for every one-time change in your parenting plan. Instead, you and your co-parent should discuss how you can temporarily adjust your parenting plan to fit your unusual circumstance. Your parenting agreement can even state that you will allow changes to the plan for isolated situations as long as both sides agree to it.

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Disagreeing on Whether to Sell Your House During DivorceMany couples going through a divorce will agree to sell their marital home rather than deciding on which one of them will keep it. The size and cost of the house may be impractical for one person, and including the house in the division of property can make it more difficult to equitably divide the properties. By selling the house, the divorcees can more easily divide the money that they receive from the sale. However, what can you do if your spouse will not agree to sell your house? You may have legal remedies that will allow you to sell your home, depending on whether your spouse is being unreasonable in obstructing the sale.

Reasoning

Before trying to force the sale of your marital home, you should consider why your spouse is objecting to the sale. They may have a good reason for not wanting to sell the house or wanting to wait before moving forward with the sale:

  • They may want to settle other financial issues related to the divorce so they will know whether they can still afford the marital home.
  • They may be trying to avoid uprooting your children during the school year.
  • They may have a personal connection to the house if it belonged to a relative.
  • They may believe that you need to make renovations to the home before selling it.
  • They may believe that the housing market will become more favorable if you wait.

Your spouse may also try to prevent the sale for impractical reasons, such as wanting to delay having to move out or being spiteful towards you.

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Posted on in Divorce

Keys to Changing Yourself After Your DivorceThe primary purpose of filing for a divorce is to find the happiness that you are not getting from your marriage. However, you cannot expect to be much happier if you are stuck in your same marital routines. Change takes effort and can be frightening when compared to what you are familiar with. You have already made a major change by divorcing your spouse. Once you feel settled into that change, there are other changes you can make to your lifestyle, from minor tweaks to reinventing yourself:

  1. Socialize: Up to this point, your marriage has largely defined your social circles. While there is no need to abandon your friends, you should try to expand your social circles by meeting new people. The easiest way to do so is to participate in a group activity, which you can find through local organizations and online meetup groups. Some groups may be geared towards recently divorced people, though you should not feel that you are limited to those groups.
  2. Find What You Enjoy: Were there hobbies or activities that you felt like you could not do while you were married? Now is your chance to try them without worrying about whether your spouse will also enjoy them. It is possible that you will not like some of these activities as much as you thought, while you may be surprised by how much you enjoy other activities. Either way, this is your opportunity to find out.
  3. Consider Uprooting Yourself: For some people, the best way to find happiness after divorce is by redefining themselves. You could look for a new job, start a new career or move to another part of the country. However, drastic changes may be impractical if you have children or are worried about financially supporting yourself. You can still find more subtle or gradual ways to change your lifestyle.
  4. Ease Into Dating: Most people are not ready to start another serious relationship immediately after their divorce, but you will eventually feel more comfortable dating. There is not a timetable for how long this will take. Once you do start dating, it is important that you are honest with yourself and the other person about what you want. It may be that you need a more casual dating experience than looking for someone you may want to eventually marry.

Contact a Crystal Lake, Illinois, Divorce Attorney

Finding the courage to change yourself after divorce starts with creating a successful divorce agreement. A McHenry County divorce lawyer at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, will make sure that you finish your divorce feeling financially secure and emotionally satisfied. Schedule a free consultation by calling 815-338-3838.

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