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Geneva Illinois Law Blog

Should I hire an attorney if I want an uncontested divorce?

Alternative dispute resolution methods like mediation and collaborative law are on nearly everyone’s minds when they are considering a divorce. After all, who wants to go through a contentious, expensive and lengthy court battle if you can get your divorce over with in a few mediation sessions? However, you and other Illinois residents should understand that while these uncontested divorce options have numerous benefits, they are not always as simple as they seem.

Your uncontested, or amicable, divorce options would most likely involve mediation or collaborative law, as the American Bar Association explains. In a collaborative divorce, you and your spouse would consult your own attorneys. Everyone involved agrees not to litigate, which means your attorneys would be required to resign from the case if you can’t reach solutions to your disputes.

What do you need to do to get your license back after DUI?

When you are convicted of a DUI, the state of Illinois will automatically suspend your license for at least six months or up to one year, if you are a first offender. Before you can drive again, you need to complete a few things.

It can be important to remember that you are not alone. Police arrest around 1.5 million individuals each year for drunk driving. These people are also in situations where they are doing everything they can to regain their license and driving privileges.

Illinois residents can face criminal charges for hazing

There are many rites of passage for those going into high school and college, especially when it comes to sports or academic clubs. Hazing is not considered an acceptable tradition, although it still occurs frequently in schools across the country. According to Illinois law, those who participate in hazing rituals may face criminal consequences.

The Illinois General Assembly explains that hazing is unlawful when such a ritual is not permitted or sanctioned by the organization the members belong to and when it results in bodily harm. Usually, hazing is a misdemeanor charge. However, when someone suffers great bodily harm or loses his or her life due to a hazing incident, the act can be considered a felony.

What is a DUI checkpoint and what are your rights?

When you are stopped by a police officer on suspicion of intoxicated driving, they only are allowed to stop you if they have probable cause. However, authorities can get around this if they stop you at a DUI checkpoint.

In some states, DUI checkpoints are illegal, but not in Illinois. DUI checkpoints are places where police stop drivers in a sequence, such as every fifth car that passes, and check for signs of insobriety.

How can my driving record points affect my license status?

If you’ve ever been given a speeding ticket or were found at fault in a fender bender, you might have been told you would get points on your driving record. What exactly does this mean, you might wonder? Can having too many points on my record result in the loss of my driving privileges? You and other Illinois residents may want to take note of the potential consequences of racking up driving points, as well as how to address them.

How are points added to your record? You can get points for speeding or reckless driving, driving under the influence, causing a collision or injury and many other offenses. The Illinois Secretary of State explains that if you have a significant number of driving points or too many driving violations within a certain time period, such as more than three traffic violations in 12 months, your driver’s license may be suspended or revoked.

Divorce mistakes to avoid

You and your spouse have been having a rough few years and you think you are finally ready to pull the trigger and get a divorce. But the divorce process is complicated can be difficult to navigate and people can make mistakes.

Sometimes these mistakes can be costly and have a significant negative impact on many aspects of your life. Here are three common mistakes people make when going through a divorce that you should try to avoid:

What you need to know about plea bargains

At the Law Offices of Johnson & Buh, we know that many criminal cases in Illinois never go to trial because the prosecutor offers and the defendant accepts a plea bargain. We also know that while a plea bargain may be the best choice for any given defendant, you should never accept one unless and until you know exactly what you are agreeing to do and the consequences thereof.

As FindLaw explains, a plea bargain is a negotiated agreement between the prosecutor and your attorney whereby the prosecutor agrees to do something in exchange for your doing something. Plea bargains generally fall into the following three categories:

  1. Charge bargains in which the prosecutor agrees to reduce the charges against you in exchange for your agreement to plead guilty to the new charges
  2. Sentence bargains in which you agree to plead guilty to the charges pending against you in exchange for the prosecutor agreeing to recommend to the judge that you receive a lighter than normal sentence
  3. Fact bargains in which your attorney agrees to stipulate to the truthfulness of certain facts in your case in exchange for the prosecutor agreeing not to bring up other facts

Should I go to court instead of choosing an uncontested divorce?

You may have learned from family, friends and your own research that alternative dispute resolution methods have many benefits over a litigated divorce. While it is true that mediation and collaborative law can help many Illinois couples end their marriages amicably, uncontested divorce is not for everyone. If you have doubts as to whether an uncontested method is for you, it may be wise to consider your individual circumstances.

As FindLaw explains, mediation and collaborative law can be less costly than litigation, as well as less time-consuming and contentious. However, you and your spouse will need to cooperate and keep an open mind when negotiating solutions to your disputes. An uncontested option may not be advisable in the following situations:

  • Your spouse has significantly more funds than you, and is using it as leverage against you.
  • Your spouse attempts to intimidate you and your legal team into giving in to his or her demands.
  • Neither you nor your spouse are able to discuss matters respectfully and civilly.
  • Domestic violence or other forms of abuse were present during the marriage.
  • Your spouse abused alcohol or other substances.

3 key factors in determining drug possession charges

If you potentially face charges from an upcoming drug possession case, the consequences it can have on your life are severe. You could be paying thousands of dollars, face years of imprisonment and find it nearly impossible to land a job once the whole ordeal is over.

The court determines your conviction based on different areas of the offense. Even the slightest difference can determine whether you spend 4 or 40 years in prison. Before you head to court, it is essential to know the various factors that can determine your sentence.

The role of technology during divorce

It is no secret technology plays a huge role in everyday life. It is hard to avoid texting, sending emails or using social media throughout the day. Most people are very connected and active on the internet.

However, this activity could come back to harm you during your divorce. The role of technology in divorce cases is becoming more and more prominent. The rise of the internet and other technology presents some potential problems when it comes to divorce.

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