Category: Divorce

You Better Get Consent Before You Record

Many people, especially those going through a divorce, for a variety of reasons believe it’s necessary to record conversations. However, what people don’t know is that they could be committing a crime by recording a conversation. Civil remedies are also available to a victim of eavesdropping.

The Illinois Eavesdropping Act (the “Act”) was originally enacted to protect communications that individuals intended to be private, like a conversation between divorcing spouses about a dispute they were having. Confusion occurred in enforcing the Act with how to interpret what a party’s intent was and whether the communication was “private.”

Due to that confusion, the Act was amended so that all parties would need consent to record their conversations, regardless of whether there was any intent to keep the conversation private. The United State’s Supreme Court found that amendment to be unconstitutional, so the Act was amended again.

The Act now provides that a person violates the Act by knowingly and intentionally using an eavesdropping device (anything that can be used to hear or record oral conversations) to overhear, transmit or record any private conversation-regardless of whether he or she is a party to the conversation-unless done with the consent of all parties.

If you don’t get consent, in addition to potential criminal sanctions, the conversation you record will also be inadmissible as evidence in your case. The lesson is simple-get consent, and if you don’t have it, don’t record the conversation.

Take advantage of the experience we have in family law matters and call Nicholas J. Galasso now at 630-949-2061 or access our website at and schedule a free consultation.

Change to Maiden Name Made Easier for Divorced Women

Under current law, a divorced woman is required to pay for a legal notice in a newspaper telling the world she wants to revert to using her maiden name if she did not include a name-change request in her divorce judgment. Many feel that publishing that type of notice is embarrassing, intrusive and time-consuming. They would be right on all counts.

Governor Pritzker is expected to sign a new law which eliminates this antiquated legal requirement of publishing notice in a newspaper by a divorced woman of her intention to revert to the use of her maiden name.

As a divorce law firm, we always inquire of a divorcing woman whether or not she wants the right (it’s not an obligation) to resume the use of her maiden name. We protect her right by either entering a separate Court Order giving her leave of court to resume the use of her maiden name or by including a provision in her Judgment for divorce giving her that right. By doing so, we have eliminated her need to publish and the required legal notice.

This new law is designed to protect divorcing women who don’t know to ask a lawyer to include her right to resume the use of her maiden name. It also will be of benefit to a divorcing woman who cannot afford a lawyer to assist with her divorce.

We can help you with legal separation or divorce. Call Nicholas J. Galasso at 630-949-2061 or access our website at to schedule a free consultation.

2019 Tax Law Changes Drastically Impact Divorces -Don’t Be Caught Uninformed


Effective January 1, 2019, there are new tax laws that will significantly impact divorces. The first new tax law (and perhaps the most drastic) provides maintenance (formerly alimony) payments will not be deductible by the person paying it or treated as income for the person receiving it. As a result of the new tax law, divorcing spouses will likely more aggressively contest the amount of maintenance in cases where maintenance is appropriate.

However, those divorced on or before December 31, 2018 are grandfathered in, so the maintenance payments continue to be deductible by the person paying it and taxable to the person receiving it.

Important to note if those grandfathered in seek modification after January 1, 2019, the tax treatment of the modified maintenance will be governed by the parties’ agreement/judgment. If the parties want the modified maintenance to be taxed under the new tax law, they must specifically provide that in the modification order.

For those who have a pre- or post-nuptial agreement, the new tax law may nullify parts of those agreements, so it’s wise to see your lawyer and financial advisor.

Finally, couples who are divorcing on and after January 1, 2019 should be aware that children won’t offer the same tax benefits as before. The new law eliminated the $4,050 exemption for each dependent, but the child tax credit doubled from $1,000 to $2,000 per qualifying child.

These law changes make it critical you seek the advice and guidance of a divorce specialist. Call Nicholas J. Galasso now at 630-949-2061 or access our website at and schedule a free consultation.