FAMILY LAW

Learn about the different types of family law and see if one is right for you.

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DIVORCE

Divorce, formally known as dissolution of marriage, is the legal process to terminate a marriage. It starts by one party filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and ends upon entry of a Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage. The Judgment may be based upon an agreement of the parties or the decision of the Court after a trial. A proper judgment includes provisions for maintenance, children, property, debts, taxes, attorney’s fees and other issues pertinent to the marriage.

At trial, the court must first determine if there are grounds for a divorce. Currently, Illinois only recognizes irreconcilable differences as grounds. This is sometimes referred to as “No Fault Divorce.” Specifically, the court must find that: irreconcilable differences have caused the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage and efforts at reconciliation have failed or that future attempts at reconciliation would be impracticable and not in the best interests of the family. It is presumed that the grounds of irreconcilable differences have been met if the parties have lived separate and apart for a continuous period in excess of six months. Living separate and apart does not require separate households, it merely requires that the parties live separate lifestyles. The grounds do not affect any of the remaining issues such as maintenance/alimony, allocation of parent responsibility (child custody), child support, and the allocation of property and debts.

TEMPORARY ORDERS

During the pendency of the case, the court may enter temporary orders addressing a variety of matters including parenting time, decision making for the children, child support, maintenance, and possession of the residence. These orders will remain in force until modified or a final judgment is entered. However, often times these orders become the basis for final orders thereby requiring careful attention to both substance and detail.

MAINTENANCE AND ALIMONY

Maintenance, formerly known as alimony, is the payment of ongoing support from one party to another. The Court must first determine whether one party has a need for maintenance and the other party has the ability to pay. Currently, in households having total income of less than $500,000 the Court will apply a statutory formula to determine maintenance otherwise known as guideline maintenance. If the household income is in excess of $500,000, the guidelines do not apply and the amount and duration of maintenance are at the discretion of the court. Guideline maintenance is determined as follows:

33 1/3% of the payor’s net annual income minus 25% of the payee’s net annual income. The amount calculated as maintenance, however, when added to the net income of the payee, shall not result in the payee receiving an amount that is in excess of 40% of the combined net income of the parties. The guideline duration of maintenance is determined by the following formula is calculated by multiplying the length of the marriage at the time the action was commenced by whichever of the following factors applies:

  • less than 5 years (.20);
  • 5 years or more but less than 6 years (.24);
  • 6 years or more but less than 7 years (.28);
  • 7 years or more but less than 8 years (.32);
  • 8 years or more but less than 9 years (.36);
  • 9 years or more but less than 10 years (.40);
  • 10 years or more but less than 11 years (.44);
  • 11 years or more but less than 12 years (.48);
  • 12 years or more but less than 13 years (.52);
  • 13 years or more but less than 14 years (.56);
  • 14 years or more but less than 15 years (.60);
  • 15 years or more but less than 16 years (.64);
  • 16 years or more but less than 17 years (.68);
  • 17 years or more but less than 18 years (.72);
  • 18 years or more but less than 19 years (.76);
  • 19 years or more but less than 20 years (.80).
  • 20 or more years, the court, in its discretion, shall order maintenance for a period equal to the length of the marriage or for an indefinite term.

There are numerous reasons for the court to deviate from both the amount and duration and such deviations may result in either more or less maintenance paid in amount and duration. Maintenance awards after January 1, 2019 are not tax deductible by the payor not included in the taxable income of the payee. However, awards made prior to January 1, 2019 and modifications of such awards are deductible by the payor and includible in the income of the payee for income tax purposes. Thus, the guideline formula differs. The guideline formula for such modifications is as follows:

30% of the payor’s gross annual income minus 20% of the payee’s gross annual income. The amount calculated as maintenance, however, when added to the gross income of the payee, may not result in the payee having a total income that is in excess of 40% of the combined gross income of the parties. Maintenance is generally always modifiable upon a substantial change in circumstances.

Therefore, if there is a significant change in income or need, one should consider seeking a modification.

ALLOCATION OF PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITY

FORMERLY KNOWN AS CHILD CUSTODY AND VISITATION

If there are minor children, the Court must make an allocation of parental responsibility for both decision making and parenting time. This was formally known as child custody involving a primary residence, visitation and decision making. The court must make provisions for decision making concerning health care, education, religion and activities for the children. There is no requirement that each parent be awarded decision making authority. Rather, the Court shall consider all factors affecting the best interest of the children in making an award of decision making for the children.

These factors include the following:

  1. the wishes of the child, taking into account the child’s maturity and ability to express reasoned and independent preferences as to decision making;
  2. the child’s adjustment to his or her home, school, and community;
  3. the mental and physical health of all individuals involved;
  4. the ability of the parents to cooperate to make decisions, or the level of conflict between the parties that may affect their ability to share decision making;
  5. the level of each parent’s participation in past significant decision making with respect to the child;
  6. any prior agreement or course of conduct between the parents relating to decision making with respect to the child;
  7. the wishes of the parents;
  8. the child’s needs;
  9. the distance between the parents’ residences, the cost and difficulty of transporting the child, each parent’s and the child’s daily schedules, and the ability of the parents to cooperate in the arrangement;
  10. whether a restriction on decision making is appropriate under Section 603.10;
  11. the willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child;
  12. the physical violence or threat of physical violence by the child’s parent directed against the child;
  13. the occurrence of abuse against the child or other member of the child’s household;
  14. whether one of the parents is a sex offender, and if so, the exact nature of the offense and what, if any, treatment in which the parent has successfully participated;
  15. and any other factor that the court expressly finds to be relevant.

Each parent is entitled to reasonable parenting time with the children. This parenting time usually includes time on weekends, holidays, winter, spring and summer breaks from school, and other occasions. The parenting time shall be without restrictions unless the Court determines that the children=s physical or mental health is endangered.

Similarly, the Court shall consider all factors effecting the best interest of the children in making an award of parenting time for the
children.

These factors include the following:

  1. the wishes of each parent seeking parenting time;
  2. the wishes of the child, taking into account the child’s maturity and ability to express reasoned and
  3. independent preferences as to parenting time;
  4. the amount of time each parent spent performing caretaking functions with respect to the child in the 24 months preceding the filing of any petition for allocation of parental responsibilities or, if the child is under 2 years of age, since the child’s birth;
  5. any prior agreement or course of conduct between the parents relating to caretaking functions with respect to the child;
  6. the interaction and interrelationship of the child with his or her parents and siblings and with any other person who may significantly affect the child’s best interests;
  7. the child’s adjustment to his or her home, school, and community;
  8. the mental and physical health of all individuals involved;
  9. the child’s needs;
  10. the distance between the parents’ residences, the cost and difficulty of transporting the child, each parent’s and the child’s daily schedules, and the ability of the parents to cooperate in the arrangement;
  11. whether a restriction on parenting time is appropriate;
  12. the physical violence or threat of physical violence by the child’s parent directed against the child or other member of the child’s household;
  13. the willingness and ability of each parent to place the needs of the child ahead of his or her own needs;
  14. the willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child;
  15. the occurrence of abuse against the child or other member of the child’s household;
  16. whether one of the parents is a convicted sex offender or lives with a convicted sex offender and, if so, the exact nature of the offense and what if any treatment the offender has successfully participated in; the parties are entitled to a hearing on the issues raised in this paragraph (15);
  17. the terms of a parent’s military familycare plan that a parent must complete before deployment if a parent is a member of the United States Armed Forces who is being deployed; and any other factor that the court expressly finds to be relevant. When addressing either decision making or parenting time, the court does not have to give equal weight to each of these factors, but may choose which factors are most relevant to each individual case.

MEDIATION

Parties are often required to participate in mediation prior to proceeding on any action involving decision making and parenting time. Mediation is generally conducted by an independent person approved by the court to assist the parties in resolving their disputes regarding the children. If the mediation is successful, an appropriate order in accordance with the parties agreement will be entered by the court. However, if it is unsuccessful the parties may proceed to litigate. The cost of mediation may be paid by one or both of the parties pursuant to agreement or court order.

CHILD SUPPORT

Both parents have a duty to support their children. The amount of child support paid by one party to the other is determined based upon the respective incomes of each of the parties and the amount of parenting time allocated to each of them. The legislature directed the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services to adopt rules establishing child support guidelines which include worksheets to aid in the calculation of the child support obligations and a schedule of basic child support obligations that reflects the percentage of combined net income that parents living in the same household in this State ordinarily spend on their child. The schedules and a calculator can be found at: https://www.illinois.gov/hfs/ChildSupport/parents/Pages/IncomeShares.aspx.

Additionally, the court may make provisions for health insurance, uncovered health care costs, educational expenses and activities. Child support generally terminates with respect to each child when the child attains age 18 and graduates from high school, but not later than the child’s 19th birthday.

PROPERTY AND DEBTS

The Court must first determine whether property is marital or non-marital property. All property owned by the parties is presumed to be marital property. However, this presumption can be rebutted by showing that property was acquired prior to the marriage, by gift, or by inheritance, in which case it will be deemed to be nonmarital property. The nonmarital property belongs to the owner. Marital property is to be divided equitably or fairly between the parties. If nonmarital property is comingled with marital property, it loses its identity and is then deemed marital property. The Court may reimburse a party for nonmarital property transmuted into marital property under special circumstances. Similarly, debts are allocated equitably or fairly amongst the parties. This is often dependent upon income and relative ability to pay.

LEGAL SEPARATION

Legal separation is an action generally used to provide for separate maintenance/alimony or other benefits to one spouse from the other. It is not a substitute for divorce. Furthermore, the fees and costs associated with such an action may be as much as in a case of divorce.

PATERNITY

Paternity actions are utilized to determine the existence of a father and child relationship. This is a legal proceeding pursuant to which the Court will make a finding as to whether someone is the natural and legal father of a child. Additionally, the Court will determine matters of custody, visitation, child support, health insurance, medical expenses, educational expenses, and other matters similar to a divorce action.

Frequently, parties sign a Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity. This document has the same effect as a judgment for paternity unless properly rescinded upon the earlier of 60 days after the signing of the Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity or the date of an administrative or judicial proceeding to determine the issues of custody, visitation or support.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, ORDERS OF PROTECTION, AND OTHER PROTECTIVE ORDERS

Orders of Protection and Protective orders, sometimes referred to as “restraining orders,” are available to survivors of violence, stalking, or abuse which protect them from their perpetrator.

There are four types of orders of protection and other protective orders:

  • An Order of Protection protects a victim of abuse from their abuser, but only if their abuser is a family or household member.
  • A Stalking No Contact Order protects a victim of stalking from their stalker.
  • A Civil No Contact Order protects a victim of non-consensual sexual contact or penetration from their perpetrator.
  • A Firearms Restraining Order prohibits a person who is a danger to themself or others from purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm, but can only be obtained by a family member. A person is prohibited from obtaining a Stalking No Contact Order or a Civil No Contact Order if they qualify for an Order of Protection. Because stalking and non-consensual sexual contact are both forms of abuse, a person can never obtain a Stalking No Contact Order or Civil No Contact Order against a family or household member, and must instead obtain an Order of Protection.

The effect of a protective order, except for a Firearms Restraining Order, may provide for the perpetrator to stay away from their victim, to stay away from their victim’s house, to have no contact with their victim, or to transfer schools if both the victim and the perpetrator are minors attending the same school. Stalking No Contact Orders and Orders of Protection may also prohibit the perpetrator from possessing a FOID Card, or from possessing or purchasing firearms. Orders of Protections can also provide for exclusive possession of a residence, custody and visitation with children, and access to and possession of property, among other remedies. Firearms Restraining Orders can only prohibit a person from purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm, and can provide no additional protective measures.

A person requests a protective order by filing a petition with the Court, such as a Petition for Order of Protection. Each type of protective order may be obtained ex parte (without notice to the other party) where an emergency exists, Except for Firearms Restraining Orders, the Court may conclude that an emergency exists if further abuse would be likely to occur if the perpetrator were given any prior notice of the efforts to obtain the protective order. The Court may grant an Emergency Firearms Restraining Order if a person poses an immediate and present danger to themself or others by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm. These emergency orders may last for a period of up to 21 days, except for Emergency Firearms Restraining Orders which last for a period of up to 14 days, at which time the Court may hold a hearing on the petition.

After hearing, final protective orders, or “plenary” order, may be entered for a period of up to two years, except for Firearms Restraining Orders which may last for a period of six months. The Court may only hold a hearing and issue a plenary order if the perpetrator has been formally notified of the pending petition for a protective order. A party violating any type of protective order may be subject to criminal prosecution.

ORDERS OF PROTECTION
The Illinois Domestic Violence Act provides that a victim of abuse may obtain an Order of Protection against another individual who is a family or household member. Abuse includes physical abuse (including sexual abuse), stalking, harassment, and interference with personal liberty, and intimidation of a dependent or willful deprivation of a child. Family or household members include people who are related by blood, are related by present or prior marriage (including step-siblings and in-laws), have a child in common, have had a dating or engagement relationship, or have shared a common dwelling (a roommate). The effect of an Order of Protection may provide for the abuser to stay away from their victim, exclusive possession of a residence, custody and visitation with children, and access to and possession of property. An Order of Protection does not divide or determine who the property or residence belongs to, but merely who is able to retain possession of it until the termination or modification of the Order. Similarly, an Order of Protection cannot create a permanent modification of custody or visitation. Unless a parent separately petitions for a permanent modification of custody or visitation during the time that the Order is in effect, both custody and visitation will revert upon expiration of the Order. Similar to a Firearms Restraining Order, an Order of Protection can prohibit an abuser from possessing a FOID Card or firearms, and permits the court enter a warrant for the seizure of the abuser’s firearms.

STALKING NO CONTACT ORDERS
The Illinois Stalking No Contact Order Act provides that a victim of stalking may obtain a Stalking No Contact Order against their stalker. The Stalking No Contact Order Act defines stalking as a course of conduct directed at a specific person, if the stalker knows or should know that their course of conduct would cause a reasonable person to fear for the safety of themselves, their workplace, their school, their place of worship, or of a third party, or that their course of conduct would cause a reasonable person to suffer emotional distress. Behavior is only a course of conduct where there are two or more acts in which the person follows, monitors, observes, surveils, or threatens a person, workplace, school, or place of worship, engages in other contact, or interferes with or damages a person’s property or pet. A course of conduct includes any incident in which the person directly, indirectly, or through third parties engages in this type of behavior, by any action, method, device, or means, including contact via electronic communication. Similar to a Firearms Restraining Order, a Stalking No Contact Order can prohibit a stalker from possessing a FOID Card or firearms, and permits the court enter a warrant for the seizure of the stalker’s firearms.

CIVIL NO CONTACT ORDERS
The Illinois Civil No Contact Order Act provides that a victim of non-consensual sexual conduct or non-consensual sexual penetration may obtain a Civil No Contact Order against their perpetrator. The Civil No Contact Order Act defines sexual conduct as any intentional or knowing touching or fondling by either person, of the sex organs, anus, or breast of either person, or the intentional or knowing touching or fondling of any part of the body of a child under 13 years of age, for the purpose of sexual gratification or arousal of either person, whether directly or indirectly (through clothing), including any transfer or transmission of semen by the perpetrator upon any part of the clothed or unclothed body of the victim. Sexual penetration is any contact or intrusion, however slight, between the sex organ or anus of one person by any object or animal, or the sex organ, mouth or anus of another person, including but not limited to cunnilingus, fellatio or anal penetration.

FIREARMS RESTRAINING ORDERS
The Illinois Firearms Restraining Order Act provides that a family member or law enforcement officer may obtain a Firearms Restraining Order against a person who poses a significant danger of causing personal injury to himself, herself, or another in the near future by having in his or her custody or control, purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm. The Illinois Firearms Restraining Order Act defines a family member as a spouse, parent, child, or step-child, any other person related by blood or present marriage, or a person who shares a common dwelling (a roommate). A person petitioning for a Firearms Restraining Order is required to make a good faith effort to provide notice to any and all intimate partners of the respondent. The notice must include that the petitioner intends to petition the court for a 6-month Firearms Restraining Order and/or an Emergency Firearms Restraining Order, as applicable. “Intimate partner” means a spouse, former spouse, people with a child in common, people who have had a dating or engagement relationship. Similar to a Firearms Restraining Order, Stalking No Contact Orders and Orders of Protection may prohibit a person from purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm, require them to surrender their FOID Card, and grant the Court the authority to issue a warrant for the seizure of firearms. However, a Firearms Restraining Order further requires a person to surrender their concealed carry license, and also authorizes the Court to issue a warrant to search the person’s residence and other locations for firearms. The difference between these two types of warrants is that a warrant for the seizure of firearms only allows law enforcement to seize firearms from a specific location, and if the firearms are not present at that location then law enforcement may not continue searching for firearms, whereas a search warrant would allow them to continue searching other locations.

CHILD REPRESENTATION

The Court may appoint an individual to represent the children in three separate capacities. First, the Court may appoint a Guardian Ad Litem. The Guardian Ad Litem’s responsibility is to perform an investigation and advise the Court as to the child’s best interest. An attorney for the child advocates on behalf of the child and in accordance with the child’s wishes and desires. A child’s representative shall advocate for the child’s best interests but consider the child’s wishes. The appointment of an attorney to fulfill any of these responsibilities is made by the Court and generally paid for by the parties.

CRIMINAL MATTERS

Domestic relations matters such as divorce and paternity often include a component of domestic violence. Often charges are brought against one of the parties. Three of the most frequent charges are: domestic battery; the unlawful interference with the reporting of domestic violence; and violation of an order of protection. Generally, these are class A misdemeanors punishable for up to one year in the county jail and/or a fine not to exceed $2,500.00. However, in some circumstances, the charges may be enhanced and charged as a felony thereby having a greater punishment.

ORDERS OF PROTECTION AND OTHER PROTECTIVE ORDERS

Orders of Protection and Protective orders, sometimes referred to as “restraining orders,” are available to survivors of violence, stalking, or abuse which protect them from their perpetrator.

There are four types of orders of protection and other protective orders:

  • An Order of Protection protects a victim of abuse from their abuser, but only if their abuser is a family or household member.
  • A Stalking No Contact Order protects a victim of stalking from their stalker.
  • A Civil No Contact Order protects a victim of non-consensual sexual contact or penetration from their perpetrator.
  • A Firearms Restraining Order prohibits a person who is a danger to themself or others from purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm, but can only be obtained by a family member. A person is prohibited from obtaining a Stalking No Contact Order or a Civil No Contact Order if they qualify for an Order of Protection. Because stalking and non-consensual sexual contact are both forms of abuse, a person can never obtain a Stalking No Contact Order or Civil No Contact Order against a family or household member, and must instead obtain an Order of Protection.

The effect of a protective order, except for a Firearms Restraining Order, may provide for the perpetrator to stay away from their victim, to stay away from their victim’s house, to have no contact with their victim, or to transfer schools if both the victim and the perpetrator are minors attending the same school. Stalking No Contact Orders and Orders of Protection may also prohibit the perpetrator from possessing a FOID Card, or from possessing or purchasing firearms. Orders of Protections can also provide for exclusive possession of a residence, custody and visitation with children, and access to and possession of property, among other remedies. Firearms Restraining Orders can only prohibit a person from purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm, and can provide no additional protective measures.

A person requests a protective order by filing a petition with the Court, such as a Petition for Order of Protection. Each type of protective order may be obtained ex parte (without notice to the other party) where an emergency exists, Except for Firearms Restraining Orders, the Court may conclude that an emergency exists if further abuse would be likely to occur if the perpetrator were given any prior notice of the efforts to obtain the protective order. The Court may grant an Emergency Firearms Restraining Order if a person poses an immediate and present danger to themself or others by purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm. These emergency orders may last for a period of up to 21 days, except for Emergency Firearms Restraining Orders which last for a period of up to 14 days, at which time the Court may hold a hearing on the petition.

After hearing, final protective orders, or “plenary” order, may be entered for a period of up to two years, except for Firearms Restraining Orders which may last for a period of six months. The Court may only hold a hearing and issue a plenary order if the perpetrator has been formally notified of the pending petition for a protective order. A party violating any type of protective order may be subject to criminal prosecution.

ORDERS OF PROTECTION
The Illinois Domestic Violence Act provides that a victim of abuse may obtain an Order of Protection against another individual who is a family or household member. Abuse includes physical abuse (including sexual abuse), stalking, harassment, and interference with personal liberty, and intimidation of a dependent or willful deprivation of a child. Family or household members include people who are related by blood, are related by present or prior marriage (including step-siblings and in-laws), have a child in common, have had a dating or engagement relationship, or have shared a common dwelling (a roommate). The effect of an Order of Protection may provide for the abuser to stay away from their victim, exclusive possession of a residence, custody and visitation with children, and access to and possession of property. An Order of Protection does not divide or determine who the property or residence belongs to, but merely who is able to retain possession of it until the termination or modification of the Order. Similarly, an Order of Protection cannot create a permanent modification of custody or visitation. Unless a parent separately petitions for a permanent modification of custody or visitation during the time that the Order is in effect, both custody and visitation will revert upon
expiration of the Order. Similar to a Firearms Restraining Order, an Order of Protection can prohibit an abuser from possessing a FOID Card or firearms, and permits the court enter a warrant for the seizure of the abuser’s firearms.

STALKING NO CONTACT ORDERS
The Illinois Stalking No Contact Order Act provides that a victim of stalking may obtain a Stalking No Contact Order against their stalker. The Stalking No Contact Order Act defines stalking as a course of conduct directed at a specific person, if the stalker knows or should know that their course of conduct would cause a reasonable person to fear for the safety of themselves, their workplace, their school, their place of worship, or of a third party, or that their course of conduct would cause a reasonable person to suffer emotional distress. Behavior is only a course of conduct where there are two or more acts in which the person follows, monitors, observes, surveils, or threatens a person, workplace, school, or place of worship, engages in other contact, or interferes with or damages a person’s property or pet. A course of conduct includes any incident in which the person directly, indirectly, or through third parties engages in this type of behavior, by any action, method, device, or means, including contact via electronic communication. Similar to a Firearms Restraining Order, a Stalking No Contact Order can prohibit a stalker from possessing a FOID Card or firearms, and permits the court enter a warrant for the seizure of the stalker’s firearms.

CIVIL NO CONTACT ORDERS
The Illinois Civil No Contact Order Act provides that a victim of non-consensual sexual conduct or non-consensual sexual penetration may obtain a Civil No Contact Order against their perpetrator. The Civil No Contact Order Act defines sexual conduct as any intentional or knowing touching or fondling by either person, of the sex organs, anus, or breast of either person, or the intentional or knowing touching or fondling of any part of the body of a child under 13 years of age, for the purpose of sexual gratification or arousal of either person, whether directly or indirectly (through clothing), including any transfer or transmission of semen by the perpetrator upon any part of the clothed or unclothed body of the victim. Sexual penetration is any contact or intrusion, however slight, between the sex organ or anus of one person by any object or animal, or the sex organ, mouth or anus of another person, including but not limited to cunnilingus, fellatio or anal penetration.

FIREARMS RESTRAINING ORDERS
The Illinois Firearms Restraining Order Act provides that a family member or law enforcement officer may obtain a Firearms Restraining Order against a person who poses a significant danger of causing personal injury to himself, herself, or another in the near future by having in his or her custody or control, purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm. The Illinois Firearms Restraining Order Act defines a family member as a spouse, parent, child, or step-child, any other person related by blood or present marriage, or a person who shares a common dwelling (a roommate). A person petitioning for a Firearms Restraining Order is required to make a good faith effort to provide notice to any and all intimate partners of the respondent. The notice must include that the petitioner intends to petition the court for a 6-month Firearms Restraining Order and/or an Emergency Firearms Restraining Order, as applicable. “Intimate partner” means a spouse, former spouse, people with a child in common, people who have had a dating or engagement relationship. Similar to a Firearms Restraining Order, Stalking No Contact Orders and Orders of Protection may prohibit a person from purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm, require them to surrender their FOID Card, and grant the Court the authority to issue a warrant for the seizure of firearms. However, a Firearms Restraining Order further requires a person to surrender their concealed carry license, and also authorizes the Court to issue a warrant to search the person’s residence and other locations for firearms. The difference between these two types of warrants is that a warrant for the seizure of firearms only allows law enforcement to seize firearms from a specific location, and if the firearms are not present at that location then law enforcement may not continue searching for firearms, whereas a search warrant would allow them to continue searching other locations.

ADOPTION

There are several different types of adoption. The most common adoption is the related party adoption. This occurs when the child and one of the adoptive parents are related. It is often utilized when a natural parent is not involved with the child and the custodial parent and his or her new spouse wish to adopt the child as theirs. Other types of adoptions may involve agencies or private parties.