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‘A lot of uncertainty:’ COVID-19 pandemic leaves many re-evaluating life choices, changes

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MILWAUKEE -- While the coronavirus pandemic has brought some families together, unfortunately, it is also causing some to grow apart. Now, many are questioning their future and how to navigate it.

Rick Russell

"After seeing what's going on with the pandemic and the number of people and families suffering they think, 'Gee, I don't have my affairs in order and it's time I do so,'" said Rick Russell, Vice President and Co-owner of Wisconsin Legal Blank.

Russell told FOX6 News he has seen an uptick in sales of will and trust forms -- an increase by as much as 80 percent.

"It's peace of mind," Russell said.

Russell has also noticed more people are contemplating divorce.

"The divorces were up over 80 percent of sales of the actual kits," Russell said.

It seems quarantine is giving people a chance to re-evaluate their lives.

Rebecca Millenbach

"Since the pandemic, we have seen a lot of uncertainty and quite frankly, a lot of fear," said Attorney Rebecca Millenbach.

Millenbach specialized in family law -- and said calls about the divorce process have been steadily coming in. For those who are already split up, there is a strain in navigating the pandemic -- from placement to payments.

"Parents are concerned about sending their kids over to their ex-spouses houses," Millenbach said. "People are losing their jobs. They can't pay child support orders like they use to. They can't pay their maintenance spousal support like the used to. So they are looking for some sort of reprieve."

Milwaukee County Courthouse

Millenbach said the courts are working really hard trying to get the litigants the justice they deserve. But in the meantime...

"Be patient, be kind, be understanding," Millenbach said.

Especially in a time where families are dealing with different hardships.

"Domestic abuse is on the rise -- and anybody who is a victim of domestic abuse knows that the courts are open for you, they will hear you -- they are there for you," Millenbach said.

Millenbach said domestic abuse victims still have access to the court. If you need to, you can still go to the 7th floor of the Milwaukee County Courthouse, meet with an advocate, and get your petition heard.

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