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Family Law

At Merel, our family law attorneys understand the impact that case outcomes have on our clients’ lives.

That’s why it’s so important for you to choose highly qualified, experienced & skilled family law attorneys to represent you.

Merel Family Law: Find out why they call us Your Family in Family Law®.

Legal issues involving family are often painful, sensitive and stressful. They often include complicated issues such as child visitation rights, guardianships, domestic violence and enforcement, pre and post-nuptial agreements and more. Given this, it’s extremely vital to receive the representation you need and deserve because that will make a significant difference in how your life moves forward. 

Why Choose Merel Family Law as Your Family Law Attorney?

Our clients are the type of people who demand and deserve world-class legal representation, and they won’t settle for anything less. So, we do our homework, stay on top of changes and emergent issues, prepare for every scenario, collaborate when it makes sense and fight like hell when it doesn’t. 

We work just as hard to keep it. Our team of seasoned attorneys has worked diligently to help earn the respect of our Chicago-area colleagues, clients, judges, court systems and community, and we intend to keep it that way. In other words, our reputation speaks for itself.

All divorces are unique, and while we prefer to approach our clients’ cases in a spirit of collaboration and negotiation, we are also not afraid to “take the gloves off” when needed. In other words, our clients’ answer to the question, “What does winning look like to you?” informs our strategies, tactics and tone. 

You’ll have peace of mind knowing we will never push you into a lengthy, costly and unnecessary court battle. However, we will use all legal remedies to protect your rights.

Our seasoned attorneys have specific expertise in cases involving women, LGBTQ+ couples, fathers, high-net-worth individuals, dissolution of long-term marriages, spouses who own businesses, appeals and more. We’ll ensure you’re represented by an experienced attorney who understands and respects your situation, the law and how best to work through your unique challenges. 

Unlike other law firms, we know how important it is to manage our client’s expectations and be available to answer their questions and concerns outside of regular business hours. You can contact us by phone, text, or email around the clock. 

Schedule an appointment at any one of our three in-person offices in Chicago, Hinsdale and Highland Park, or conduct some or all of your court proceedings online via Zoom.  In some instances, an in-court appearance may be required by the judge. If so, you’ll typically be given at least 30 days advance notice. 

Contact the best family lawyers in Chicago

Complete the form below to set up a consultation with our family law experts. Our team of experienced attorneys is here for you. Need quick answers? Call us at (312) 408-7000.

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"I cannot stress enough how happy I was with their performance and I highly recommend that anyone with a family law matter have Merel Family Law represent them."

“Merel Family Law handled my divorce for me. I cannot stress enough how happy I was with their performance and I highly recommend that anyone with a family law matter have Merel Family Law represent them. The sound legal advice combined with the personal attention they gave me through the entire process was exceptional and so was the outcome of the divorce. I think the best testimony I can give is to share that after the divorce was finalized, I hadn’t spoken to Jonathan or anyone in his firm in over a year and a half. During the holidays last year, my ex-wife tried to throw a very last-minute curve ball involving kids’ schedules during the holidays. I left a voicemail for Jonathan Merel asking him to call me. He responded to that voicemail within 15 minutes and had an email out to my ex-wife within the hour. How many attorneys return calls within 15 minutes to clients they haven’t spoken to in over a year? That’s the level of service you receive from Merel Family Law. I am so grateful that this law firm was recommended to me by another attorney which also speaks volumes.”

Former Client

Our 4-Step Process

What to Expect from Our Property Division Attorney Team and the Distribution Process

Step 1: Contact us by phone (312-408-7000) or email. Our intake coordinator will ask a few simple – and completely confidential – questions to connect you with the right lawyer. Depending on your schedule, your initial consultation could be scheduled as soon as the same day. 

Step 2: Consult with your attorney. During your initial conversation with your property division attorney, you’ll be asked to share all aspects of your situation, including finances, property, businesses and children.

Step 3: Pay the retainer fee & legal process begins. All property division cases are different – some are easy and straightforward, others are extremely complex and most are somewhere between. We will use this type of criteria to assess your retainer fee amount.

Step 4: Your divorce attorney will determine, communicate, and execute your case strategy.  Initially, this includes filing appropriate paperwork. After which, mediation or litigation begins surrounding the dispute.


Merel Family Law By The Numbers

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Locations In Chicagoland

Legal Services for Family Conflict Resolution

Parents are not the only ones who can seek visitation with a child. Third parties, such as grandparents, may have rights to custody or visitation. There are two requirements that must be met before filing a petition. The child must be at least one year old, and one of the children’s parents must be unreasonably denying the grandparent time with the child. It is in your best interest to seek counsel from grandparent rights attorneys to make sure you have a valid claim for visitation rights.

Ending a marriage or civil union is complicated, stressful, and, above all, painful. The aggressive and expert divorce attorneys at Merel Family Law will ensure you are supported throughout the dissolution of marriage. As our client, we are committed to providing you with the best representation and ensuring that someone is always available to address your questions or concerns.

Domestic violence is a serious matter that no one should have to endure. Victims may seek an order of protection with help from a domestic violence lawyer. Whether it was an isolated incident or a long history of abuse, there is hope to find peace. An order of protection can be obtained for child abuse, elder abuse, stalking, or abuse by a significant other or family member. Fearing for your safety is grounds for an order of protection, and working with a domestic violence lawyer is the first step.

Enforcement law entails making sure child support, spousal support, visitation, and property division orders are followed or paid. A family law attorney can file a motion with the court on your behalf to enforce prior court decisions. The court can then enforce various penalties, including jail time, fines, the other party’s attorney fees, and the turnover of bond money.

A guardianship attorney can help you navigate the process of ensuring your child or family member is taken care of legally. Guardians are able to make financial and healthcare decisions for someone who isn’t able to make decisions on their own because of their age, mental ability, or illness. A guardianship attorney will assist you in filing the appropriate petitions with the courts and advise you to pursue the appropriate type of guardianship for your situation.

Happy family spending time together and smiling while sitting on the sofa at home

Get Support From Our Top-Rated Family Attorneys.

At Merel Family Law, we want to solve your family disputes quickly and smoothly. That starts with scheduling a consultation with our experienced intake coordinators. Then, our team of skilled family attorneys will provide you with the support you need to navigate the complexities of a family law case.

Family Law Processes & Lawyers

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Annulment
  • Child custody and visitation
  • Child support
  • Civil unions
  • Collaborate law
  • Divorce
  • Divorce mediation
  • Fathers’ rights
  • Grandparent visitation
  • High net worth divorce
  • Legal separation
  • Order of protection
  • Paternity
  • Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements
  • Property division
  • Same-sex divorce
  • Experience with family law cases
  • Ability to handle all parts of a case 
  • Clear communication with clients
  • Personality and approachability
  • Transparency with attorney fees

In every case, it takes a village. We have a full-service staff and a large team of attorneys to help with your situation. We use a variety of attorneys, both partners and associates alike, to resolve your case and keep costs down.

This is the million-dollar question, but honestly it depends on your case. Less contentious cases will incur fewer fees, and more complex cases that need more work or litigation from attorneys and staff will incur more. Retainers vary based on the type and scope of your case.

A retainer is an initial deposit required by attorneys and other professionals to commence representation. The retainer covers fees (billed based on hourly rates) and expenses. If the retainer is used up, the client will be responsible for any additional fees incurred beyond the retainer. If the case is finalized and a portion of the retainer is unused, that portion will be refunded back to the client.

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