Can I Choose to Make My Maintenance Payments Directly to Ex Wife?

illinois spousal maintenance lawyer"I will soon be in Illinois divorce court and be ordered to pay maintenance (alimony) to my wife both during the divorce and quite possibly after the divorce. I would like to avoid the embarrassment of having everyone in my company know that there is a withholding order in place requiring my employer to withhold money from my salary to pay my wife maintenance (alimony). It makes me look like a deadbeat when I have never missed a payment to her. Instead, I would like to make the payments directly to my wife. Is this possible?" Under the Illinois Income Withholding for Support Act [750 ILCS 28/20 (a)(1)], you can make the direct payments but only if you and your ex wife (or soon to be ex wife) agree in writing to direct maintenance payments to her. You both must sign the written agreement as well. The Illinois Income Withholding for Support Act applies to alimony or maintenance payments whether temporary maintenance or permanent maintenance. Even then, the order requiring you to pay maintenance must provide that an income withholding notice is to be prepared and served upon your employer if you become delinquent in paying maintenance. (c) "Delinquency" means any payment, including a payment of interest, under an order for support (maintenance) which becomes due and remains unpaid after entry of the order for support. 750 ILCS 28/15(c). In other words, if you make an agreement to pay directly in writing and both of you sign it, if you miss a maintenance payment or make a late payment, the written agreement is off and your employer will withhold maintenance from your pay for all future maintenance payments. Contact an Illinois maintenance attorney at the law office of Martoccio & Martoccio. Call 630-920-8855 for a free initial consultation.

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