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Wheaton Alimony Attorney

Lawyer for Spousal Support in DuPage County

In Illinois, spousal support, which is sometimes called alimony or spousal maintenance, is a legal responsibility that a court may impose on one spouse to support the other financially during or after the couple's divorce. The purpose of spousal support is to ensure that the dependent spouse can maintain the standard of living they had during the marriage and avoid financial hardship. Eligibility for spousal maintenance will be based on a number of factors, such as the dependent spouse's needs and the supporting spouse's ability to pay.

At Fawell & Fawell, we know how important the issue of spousal support is for many people getting a divorce. Our robust knowledge of divorce law and the issues that can affect spousal support in Illinois makes us highly qualified to handle your case with professionalism and determination, and we are dedicated to providing ethical, legal representation during your divorce.

How Is Spousal Support Determined in Illinois?

When determining whether or not spousal maintenance is appropriate, the court will take into account several factors, such as:

  • The duration of the marriage
  • The income and earning potential of both spouses, as well as their property and other financial resources
  • The standard of living the couple enjoyed during their marriage
  • The age and physical condition of each spouse, including any disabilities or impairments that may affect the dependent spouse
  • The needs of each spouse

The court will typically start by determining the dependent spouse's needs, including their reasonable living expenses, such as housing costs, food, clothing, and medical expenses. After this, the court will determine the ability of the supporting spouse to pay. This is typically done by examining the supporting spouse's income and other financial resources, including investments and retirement accounts.

Based on these and other factors, the court will then decide on a reasonable amount of alimony the supporting spouse must pay the dependent spouse. This amount is usually calculated using a formula that is defined in Illinois, although deviations may be made based on the unique circumstances of a case. The court may choose to award temporary spousal support that will be paid during the divorce process. Fixed-term spousal maintenance may be paid for a specific period of time after the divorce is finalized, and the duration will usually be based on the total amount of time the couple was married. Reviewable maintenance may be awarded in some cases, and after a certain amount of time, the court will look at the circumstances of the parties to determine whether payments should continue or not. In cases where a couple was married for over 20 years or where there are extraordinary circumstances, indefinite spousal support may be awarded.

For instance, if the dependent spouse is disabled or has an illness that prevents them from working, the court may award permanent alimony that will continue for the rest of their life. Alternatively, if the dependent spouse can return to work after gaining some training or education, the court may award reviewable alimony for a few years, and after that period, payments may cease if the spouse has become self-supporting.

Is Spousal Support Always Awarded?

No, spousal support will not always be appropriate in every divorce. However, it should be noted that spousal support is more common in divorces featuring significant income disparities, including cases where one spouse is a stay-at-home parent. In situations where maintenance is awarded, the court may decide that it will be paid on an ongoing basis or as a lump sum payment.

Contact a DuPage County Spousal Maintenance Lawyer

Divorce can have significant financial implications that may affect both spouses for years to come. Spousal support may be awarded to ensure that a spouse will be able to meet their needs after their divorce has been finalized, and it can ensure that they will be able to take steps to be able to support themselves in the future.

At Fawell & Fawell, we understand the enormous impact that divorce can have on your financial situation. Regardless of whether you are seeking spousal support or may be ordered to pay support to your spouse, it is essential to take the proper steps to safeguard your financial future. To learn how our attorney can help you address these issues and complete your divorce successfully, contact us at 630-871-2400 today for a free consultation.

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