Maintenance Without the Alimony Deduction by Nancy Chausow Shafer
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In December 2017, the congressional revenue act known as “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017” was signed into law, amending the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. While making major changes in many different areas of tax law, one notable change which directly impacts family law practice is the elimination of the deduction for alimony (called “maintenance” in Illinois) payments.

The federal statute first provides for the repeal of provisions providing for the inclusion of maintenance in the calculation of gross income……

Read entire article at the Docket August 2018


Posted By The Berna Law Firm
Full text of SB2289 Section 10. Amendment of IMDMA section 504, 505, and 510
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The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act is amended by changing Sections 504, 505, and 510as follows: (750 ILCS 5/504) (from Ch. 40, par. 504) Sec. 504. Maintenance.(a)Entitlement to maintenance. In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage, or legal separation, or declaration of invalidity of marriage, or dissolution of a civil union, or a proceeding for maintenance following a legal separation or dissolution of the marriage or civil union by a court which lacked personal jurisdiction over the absent spouse, a proceeding for modification of a previous order for maintenance under Section 510 of this Act, or any proceeding authorizedunder Section 501 of this Act, the court may grant a maintenance award for either spouse in amounts and for periods of time as the court deems just, without regard to marital misconduct, and the maintenance may be paid from the income or property of the other spouse. The court shall first make a finding as to determine whether a maintenance award is appropriate, after consideration of all relevant factors, including:

Read Complete Legislative Text here


Posted By The Berna Law Firm
Effect of 2017 GOP Tax Reform on Maintenance in Illinois

Maintenance/Alimony (hereinafter referred to as “maintenance”) is “…a payment to or for a spouse or former spouse made under a divorce or separation instrument.”1 The IRS has specific requirements for payments to a spouse to be considered maintenance.

The payments must be:

1. Paid as cash or cash equivalents;

2. Made pursuant to a qualified instrument (usually a divorce decree or separation agreement);

3. Is not designated by the instrument as “not maintenance”;

4. The parties must reside in separate households when payment is made;

5. The payor is not liable to make any payment after death of payee spouse;

6. The parties must file separate income tax returns; and 7. The payment is not treated as child support.  Read complete article


Greta Berna
Immigrant Rights Advocates Call On Illinois Gov. To Sign Bills

As news has centered on the plight of hundreds of families who have been separated while trying to enter the US through Mexico, concern has been raised over the ultimate destiny of about 1,500 children being held in detention centers and shelters. There are at least 66 of those children in Chicago, according to Heartland Alliance, a non-profit with nine shelters for unaccompanied minors there.

While officials and citizens push for answers, advocates in the state are calling for three pieces of legislation they helped draft to be signed into law. They all passed through the state legislature over spring session, and have until the end of the month to go to Gov. Bruce Rauner for his consideration before they die. His spokesperson would not say if Rauner has yet decided if he'll sign them.


Lawsuit alleges sex discrimination was 'the norm' at CareerBuilder

A former marketing director at CareerBuilder has sued the company in federal court, saying it allowed sexual harassment, discrimination and bullying to flourish unchecked.

The lawsuit, filed yesterday, says the digital job-listing company "created a male-dominated culture where degrading, discriminatory conduct towards women permeated everyday life," with conduct ranging "from sophomoric to predatory." (Read the lawsuit below.)

CareerBuilder spokeswoman Jennifer Grasz said in an email that the Loop-based company was "committed to providing a safe, supportive, positive work environment that treats all employees equally. … We are examining the complaint."

The woman filing the case, Lori McInerney, was dismissed last year, three weeks after she complained about the company's culture, the lawsuit says. Though she began pursuing her legal claim through administrative channels before Harvey Weinstein was outed as a serial sexual harasser in October, since then the cultural landscape has been reconfigured by women speaking out against harassment in film, media, politics and business. read entire article