Divorces involving complex assets can take longer to process through the legal system. Your divorce attorney can help insure you are able to pay for your living expenses and meet your financial obligations, during the pendency of the case, by asking the courts to award temporary support.
Section 501 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act allows a court to award a spouse temporary support while the case is pending. The court sets an amount that is to be paid each month for maintenance or child support or both. This is a short term remedy and is not the final amount awarded at the end of the case.
In order to obtain temporary support, the spouse must file a Petition for Temporary Support. The Petition must allege that the party seeking support is without sufficient income or assets to meet the needs of that party and/or the children. The Petition must also allege that the opposing spouse has the income and ability to pay support. The Petition for Temporary is accompanied by an affidavit which details the categories and amounts of living expenses.
Each county in the State of Illinois requires all divorce litigants to prepare an affidavit of expenses in some form. In Cook County, the form is called “Disclosure Statement Pursuant to Rule 13.3.1(B)” (form #CCDR 0604) and can be found on the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County website, Court Forms, Divorce Division. In Lake County, the form is called “Financial Affidavit… Continue reading
As a divorce specialist in the Chicago area, I am exposed to many misconceptions about divorce law. For example:
People often mistakenly think that they are “legally separated” if they live in separate residences. In actuality, a legal separation is a marital status, just as is divorced or married. (Section 402 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act). In order to be legally separated in Illinois, a court must approve the legal separation and enter a court order to that effect.
If a spouse desires a trial separation and not a divorce, a legal separation is a vehicle to provide that spouse with support during the separation. However, it should be noted that while providing a legal support obligation, that same section, Section 402 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, also states that a legal separation does not bar the other spouse from obtaining a divorce if the requirements for a divorce are met.
Today, a legal separation is rarely used instead of a divorce. The primary reasons are:
As a Chicago divorce lawyer I see that, often times, one spouse alone manages the parties’ finances. Or, one party knows that an asset exists, such as a retirement account, but does not know where it is held or the value. The Illinois Supreme Court has given divorce lawyers tools with which to discover assets so that one party is not unjustly enriched to the detriment of the other. By way of example, the rules provide for the mandatory production of documents, accompanied by a signed affidavit stating that the spouse has produced all of the documents within his or her possession and control. In the vast majority of cases, there is usually a “paper trail”, which an experienced attorney can follow, to verify whether the disclosure of information is complete. If the other spouse withholds or hides information, a court has the authority to impose severe sanctions against that spouse.
An attorney is also permitted to take the deposition of a party, to obtain information. A deposition consists of the attorney asking the other spouse or a witness questions. The answers are sworn to, under oath, with a court reporter present to record the answers. Again, there are safe guards in the event that the party being asked the questions is not being truthful.
Also, an attorney has been granted the power to subpoena documents from third parties and to obtain testimony from third parties. Since most people are paid by check or their salaries are direct deposited into… Continue reading