Tag Archives: spousal maintenance

DuPage County spousal support attorneyThere are a multitude of things to think about when you are getting a divorce -- where the kids will live, which one of you will remain in the family home and how you will transition to single life. If you are like most people, taxes are not very high on your list of priorities. Even so, a divorce can have a big impact on your taxes -- especially in this coming new year. In January 2019, the new tax laws will finally be put into full effect and will mean some big changes for the way divorced couples handle their taxes.

Newly-Divorced Couples Will See an Impact on Their Taxes

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was passed in December 2017, will go into full effect in 2019. The new tax code will affect about half of all Americans. In the context of divorce, the new law will affect the taxes of those who pay and receive spousal support

This new law will be the first change in 77 years to taxes affecting spousal support. Couples who finalized their divorce before December 31, 2018 will follow the current rules on who pays taxes on spousal support. Couples whose divorces are finalized on or after January 1, 2019 will follow the new set of rules on paying taxes on spousal support.

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Hinsdale IL property divsion lawyerDivorce is financially stressful in virtually all cases. Many American families rely on two incomes to make ends meet. When you divorce, your income is reduced to your income alone, which can mean big changes for your lifestyle. In addition to having your income reduced, your expenses also tend to increase. 

It is not impossible to achieve financial security after your divorce, but it can be difficult without taking the proper steps. Here are five ways you can take care of your finances after your Illinois divorce:

1. Take Inventory of Your Finances

When you are married, your finances become intertwined. The first thing you should do after your divorce is to take an inventory of your assets, liabilities, income and expenses. This will help you know where you stand when you move on to step two.

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Illinois divorce lawyerMarriage is a partnership, and spouses often make sacrifices during their relationship as they support their partner and their family. In many cases, one spouse will decide to stay home to care for children rather than pursuing career advancement, or a spouse may provide financial support to their partner as they pursue an education that will help them earn a higher salary. However, if the marriage ends in divorce, the spouse who made sacrifices is often at a financial disadvantage, and they may struggle to support themselves in their newly single life.

Following a divorce, both spouses should be able to maintain a standard of living similar to what they enjoyed while they were married. When one spouse earns significantly more than the other, the other spouse may be awarded spousal maintenance (formerly known as alimony).

Determining Maintenance in Illinois

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Illinois divorce lawyer, Ilinois alimony attorneyDivorce is not an easy task, nor is it inexpensive. Sometimes the financial burden is so daunting that many choose to stay in an unfavorable situation. Economic struggle is unnecessary, as there are options that may be available to you, given your circumstances. One such option is alimony. Also known as spousal support or spousal maintenance, this is a payment made to you by your ex-spouse during a separation or after a divorce. Not everyone qualifies in every situation, but it is useful for those who would otherwise be financially burdened by a divorce.

What Is Alimony?

The ideal goal of divorce is to have two individuals arrive at the same standard of living once the divorce is complete. One issue is, for some reason or another, both spouses do not always make the same amount of money. Perhaps one was the homemaker while the other worked in an office. Maybe there was a difference in salaries, and one partner became the primary breadwinner. If your economic situation is vastly different from your spouse, alimony may be an option. A court order made by a family court judge may require that the higher-earning spouse makes regular payments to the other spouse for a temporary or permanent amount of time.

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Illinois divorce lawyer, DuPage County divorce attorneyThe Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (750 ILCS 5/503) defines the division of marital property, marital debt, and any other obligation defined by the court during a divorce and bound by specific procedures. Although Illinois is not a communal property state, it is an equitable division one. At the time of consideration of the division of marital assets and/or debts, Illinois courts will review the overall situation but is prohibited to include any type of marital misconduct, such as infidelity or other damaging factors leading to the dissolution of marriage in their division decisions. The following 12 factors influence the courts in their decision when it comes to fair equity distribution or percentage of marital debt to be satisfied.

Spousal Contributions

The role of the courts is to determine the percentage of spousal contribution that has contributed to the acquisition, preservation or increase, or decrease of all marital or non-marital property. Consideration is also given to which of the partners provided the majority of marital income contributing to an increase in marital assets. The same provision is given to the spouse who has increased the amount of debt throughout the marriage.

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