Ekker Law, P.C. / Steven B. Ekker, Esq.

Recent Blog Posts

Babysitters and The Right of First Refusal in Your Parenting Plan 

 Posted on September 23, 2022 in Family Law

Kane County Parenting Time LawyerWhen divorced or separated parents share children together, they often disagree about how much time the children will spend with each parent. Each parent's parenting time is described through a legally binding document called a parenting plan or parenting agreement. Unfortunately, reaching an agreement about the allocation of parenting time and other parenting issues is rarely easy. One common point of contention between co-parents involves the use of babysitters, nannies, and other third-party childcare. If you are an unmarried or divorcing parent, you will want to understand how to maximize your parent time through the "right of first refusal."

What is the Right of First Refusal?

Your parenting plan will include a parenting time schedule describing when the child lives with each parent. For example, a child may live with her father Monday through Thursday and live with her mother Friday through Sunday. The right of first refusal refers to a situation in which a parent cannot fulfill his or her parenting time responsibility. For example, if the mother from the previous example has to work over the weekend, she may not be able to watch the child.

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Injuries Caused By Building Code Violations: Understanding Your Rights

 Posted on September 13, 2022 in Personal Injury

Kane County Personal Injury LawyerWhen buildings are not constructed and maintained properly, otherwise avoidable accidents can occur to unsuspecting visitors. Anything from a missing handrail on a steep set of stairs to insufficient emergency exits can lead to injurious or even fatal accidents. Building codes exist to prevent these types of accidents. However, some architects and contractors take shortcuts or make mistakes that lead to building code violations

If you or a loved one were injured due to an unsafe condition on a property, you may be able to file a personal injury claim and recover financial compensation. To learn more about your legal rights and options, contact a personal injury attorney with experience in premises liability cases.

What Is a Building Code Violation?

Building codes are designed to establish minimum standards for the construction and maintenance of buildings. These codes cover a wide range of topics, including the strength of structural components, fire safety, exits in case of emergency, and more.

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Divorce Considerations for Older Adults

 Posted on August 31, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Spousal Support LawyerIf you are an older adult getting divorced, you may notice a lack of legal resources geared towards your needs. Quite a bit of divorce law involves things like child custody, which probably do not apply to you. You have a different set of needs entirely. You are probably thinking about things like your retirement funds and maintaining benefits eligibility. A lot also depends on how long you have been married to your current spouse. This blog will focus on considerations for long-married older spouses, while the next will focus on concerns for those ending a later-in-life marriage

One advantage of getting divorced while you are this age is that both of you are likely to be a bit more mature and patient than the typical thirtysomethings in divorce court. Collaborative divorce strategies may work well for you. It is also important to find an attorney who understands your specific needs

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Divorcing a Narcissist? Expect Trouble

 Posted on August 15, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce LawyerBeing married to a narcissist can be impossible. A narcissist is so focused on themself that they cannot fully commit to a marriage. They cannot be in an equal partnership. When you realize that the person you are married to is a narcissist and unwilling to change, divorce may be your best option. If this is the situation you are in, you should know that your path to a final divorce decree may be a bit bumpy. Narcissists are unlikely to cope well when their spouse decides to leave. It is very important that you are represented by a tough attorney who can fight back if your spouse tries any dirty tricks during the divorce process

What to Expect When You Leave a Narcissistic Spouse

Ending a marriage is always going to be complicated in some way. If you are going up against a narcissist, you can expect them to try a few less-than-fair tactics, such as: 

  • Grandiose gestures - If your spouse does not want to get divorced, they may go to great lengths to win you back. They may offer you all sorts of gifts, or swear to commit to therapy, or make grand romantic gestures. A narcissist will expect to be perceived as a hero for “saving the marriage.”  It is best to ignore this behavior. If you call off the divorce, it is highly unlikely that anything will change

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Divorce With a Disabled Adult Child

 Posted on July 21, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Family Law AttorneyDivorcing with young children can be stressful, and sometimes complicated. When you and your spouse have a disabled adult child who relies on you for care and financial support, your divorce may require a few extra steps. Working out a plan for providing continued support to a disabled adult is not like a typical child custody case. One or both of you likely already has legal guardianship of your adult child. Guardianship is typically the legal mechanism by which parents can maintain the ability to make decisions for a disabled child who has turned 18 years old. You and your spouse will need to make a plan that includes things like where your adult child will live and who will be responsible for making health care decisions. It can be a little bit more complicated than a routine custody case involving a minor, but our attorneys can help

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Can I Get Divorced in Illinois if My Spouse Does Not Want to?

 Posted on July 08, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce AttorneyIt is not a rare situation for one spouse to want a divorce while the other objects and wants to stay married. This is particularly common when there is abuse or when one spouse has a mental illness or substance abuse problem. It is also common in more conservative religious families where one spouse may not believe in divorce, while the other wants out. If you are the spouse who wants a divorce, you may feel a lot of pressure to stay in your marriage. You may be wondering whether it is even possible to get a divorce over your spouse’s objections. Fortunately, in Illinois, you do not need your spouse’s consent to divorce them. However, divorce can be a bit trickier when your spouse refuses to cooperate

How Do I Get a Divorce Finalized When My Spouse Objects?

If you know your spouse does not want to get divorced, be prepared for the process to take a bit longer. Your attorney will file a petition stating your grounds for divorce - in Illinois, this is always irreconcilable differences. Your spouse is likely to file an answer contesting the divorce. This does not mean that you are not entitled to a divorce - it just means that your spouse is not going to make it easy. However, if your spouse fails to respond at all, then you will most likely receive a default judgment

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Distracted Driving Accident Injuries in Sugar Grove: Understanding Your Rights

 Posted on June 21, 2022 in Personal Injury

Sugar Grove Car Accident Injury LawyerCell phones and other handheld electronics have been a part of our everyday lives for decades now. Most people know the dangers of using a cell phone while driving. Unfortunately, texting and driving and other types of distracted driving are still common.

If you or a loved one were hurt in a vehicle crash caused by a distracted driver, it is important to know your rights. You may be entitled to monetary compensation for your medical expenses and other damages.

Accidents Caused by Cell Phone Use and Other Types of Distracted Driving

Most states have enacted laws prohibiting handheld electronic use behind the wheel. Unfortunately, these laws have not prevented many drivers from focusing on their phones, GPS, or tablets instead of the road.

Distractions do not only come in the form of electronic devices. Almost anything can become a deadly distraction. Children arguing in the backseat, eating and drinking while driving, or even changing the radio station can lead to a crash. Anything that takes a driver’s eyes, ears, or attention away from driving can lead to accidents resulting in serious injuries or death.

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What Parents with Shared Custody Should Know About Child Relocations in Illinois

 Posted on June 14, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County Divorce LawyerApproximately 40 million Americans move every year. When parents share custody of their children, moving can present a significant challenge. If you or your child’s other parent intend to change residences soon, it is important to know your rights and responsibilities. In certain situations, parents must get permission from their child’s other parent and the court to relocate to a new residence.

Moves Classified as “Relocations” are Subject to Special Requirements

A parent with the majority of parenting time (formerly called the custodial parent) or a parent in a shared parenting arrangement (each parent has at least 40 percent of the parenting time) may seek to relocate with their child.

Per Illinois statute, a move is classified as a relocation if:

  • The parent currently lives in Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake County, McHenry County, or Will County, and the new home is more than 25 miles away.

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4 Tips for Divorcing an Abusive Spouse

 Posted on May 24, 2022 in Divorce

Sugar Grove divorce attorneyNo one deserves to suffer through an abusive marriage. If your spouse is abusing you - physically, emotionally, financially, sexually, or otherwise - it is imperative that you put your safety first and get out of your marriage. Divorcing an abusive spouse can be challenging on many levels. Abusers often make their victims believe that they cannot make it on their own, but this is never true. You may also be fearful that your spouse will harm you or your children if you try to leave

Luckily, there are steps an attorney can take to help keep you and any children you have safe during this process. While the process may be difficult, it is worth it. If your spouse abuses you, make sure you let your attorney know what your fears and needs are when you begin to initiate the process of divorce

Helpful Information to Have When You Are Leaving an Abusive Marriage

When you are ready to safely exit an abusive marriage, there are a few steps your attorney may want to take before you file for divorce in order to protect you. Tips for divorcing an abusive spouse include: 

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What to Do If You Think Your Spouse Is Hiding Assets During Divorce

 Posted on May 10, 2022 in Divorce

Kane County divorce attorneyYou may be surprised at how common it is for one spouse to hide money from the other. In the past, it was extremely common for older women to advise young brides to always have some money secretly stashed in case of emergency. Today, it is more common for the higher-earning spouse to keep money or other assets hidden away lest their spouse come after those assets in a potential divorce. It is hard to divide assets one spouse does not know about. Those who are less familiar with divorce law may believe this is advisable, although it almost never is.

If you have a sneaking suspicion that your spouse has more property or money than they are letting on, you may be correct - and you are not alone. It may surprise the average person how common it is for hidden assets to surface during divorce proceedings. If you do not think that your spouse is making full disclosure of all their assets, an attorney may be able to help find out for sure.

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