Divorcing a Missing Spouse

Sometimes people have been separated for many years and have never gotten divorced.  They may figure that they have no children, they own no real property,  they have no marital property, or they never plan to remarry, so what’s the big deal? If you have been separated for many years, in the eyes of the court you might as well still be living together because your rights and responsibilities are still the same.  Anything that you have purchased is marital property, even if purchased in your own name.  Your spouse is still entitled to a portion of your pension benefits, and if you die without a will, your spouse will still be able to get a spouse’s share of the intestate estate. The only way to separate your finances from a spouse is through a legal separation, which is a court proceeding, or a divorce. Continue reading “Divorcing a Missing Spouse”

Illinois Has a New Maintenance (Alimony) Law. What Do You Need to Know?

Starting January 1, 2015, a new law determining spousal maintenance is in effect for divorcing couples. Maintenance is also known as alimony (particularly by the IRS) or spousal support. The new law, P.A. 98-0961, affects couples whose combined gross income is less than $250,000. The new law was put into place to fix inconsistencies in the way different courts awarded maintenance across Illinois. As this is a new law with complex mathematical computations, it is strongly advised that you consult an attorney before agreeing to any divorce settlement that includes a maintenance award. Continue reading “Illinois Has a New Maintenance (Alimony) Law. What Do You Need to Know?”

Can’t Find Spouse But Want a Divorce?

Sometimes people have been separated for many years and have never gotten divorced.  They may figure that they have no children, they own no real property,  they have no marital property, or they never plan to remarry, so what’s the big deal?

If you have been separated for many years, in the eyes of the court you might as well still be living together because your rights and responsibilities are still the same.  Anything that you have purchased is marital property, even if purchased in your own name.  Your spouse is still entitled to a portion of your pension benefits, and if you die without a will, your spouse will still be able to get a spouse’s share of the intestate estate.

The only way to separate your finances from a spouse is through a legal separation, which is a court proceeding, or a divorce. Continue reading “Can’t Find Spouse But Want a Divorce?”

Is There More Than One Type of Maintenance in Illinois?

Illinois has several types of maintenance: permanent, temporary and rehabilitative.

What is Temporary Maintenance?

While a divorce is pending, a court may award one spouse maintenance on a temporary basis.  The purpose is to assure that the more dependent spouse has his or her financial needs met.  Once the divorce is finalized, all temporary orders void.  However, the marital settlement agreement or judgment may include a separate award of maintenance, or none at all. Continue reading “Is There More Than One Type of Maintenance in Illinois?”

Who Has to Pay Alimony (Maintenance) in Illinois

What is Alimony?

Alimony is a husband’s or wife’s court-ordered provision for a spouse after separation or divorce.  In Illinois, alimony is known as spousal support or maintenance.

Who Gets Maintenance?

Either spouse can get an award of maintenance.  However, there is no set formula.  The court must consider statutory factors and case law. Continue reading “Who Has to Pay Alimony (Maintenance) in Illinois”