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Naperville divorce lawyerA divorce decree is legally binding and neither spouse is allowed to violate its terms. If your spouse does not abide by the agreement settled on during mediation or by a judge’s ruling, it is vital to work with a divorce attorney to clarify and resolve this conflict. Since there are many aspects to a divorce, there are different ways a spouse can violate a court order and each violation can carry different consequences. There is no one-size-fits-all punishment for violating the terms of a divorce.

Enforcing an Illinois Divorce - Contempt Proceedings

In general, when someone violates a court order, he or she is held in contempt of court. A spouse’s willful neglect to make child or spousal support payments, failure to comply with a parenting time order, and the refusal by one spouse to give specific assets to the other as stated in the divorce decree are all examples of violations. If your ex-spouse violates the terms of your divorce, you can file for contempt proceedings.

It is essential to try to communicate with your ex-spouse and learn if there was a reason that he or she failed to follow your divorce terms. There are many reasons a spouse may not be able to make child support payments on time. Sometimes, learning what mitigating factors might exist can lead to a resolution without court intervention.

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Naperville divorce lawyerIf you have decided to divorce and started the process of researching your options, you may feel as if you are being bombarded with unfamiliar legal terms. Many people who divorce have never been involved in a legal dispute or even stepped foot inside of a courtroom before, so it can understandably be overwhelming. One aspect of divorce that people often have questions about is divorce “discovery.” The discovery process involves each party and his or her respective attorney obtaining information and evidence from the other party. This fact-checking portion of the divorce process is an essential part of ensuring that the divorce settlement or judgment you receive is based on accurate and complete information.

What is Involved in Divorce Discovery?

The duration and complexity of discovery will depend on the value and complexity of each party’s assets, the level of contention between the spouses, and how willing the spouses are to be honest and forthcoming about personal information. When a spouse attempts to hide assets, lie about income sources, or is otherwise unwilling to be transparent about finances, the discovery process becomes even more crucial. Discovery can involve a number of different methods for exchanging information, including:

  • Disclosure: When a couple files for divorce, one of the first things each spouse will be asked to do is fill out a financial affidavit listing his or her assets, income, and debts. Each party will have the opportunity to review the affidavit and request additional information.

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DuPage County divorce attorneysAccording to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, nearly 20 million Americans suffered from a substance abuse disorder in 2017. If your spouse has a drug or alcohol addition, you know just how quickly a substance abuse problem can take over a person’s life. An expensive drug or alcohol problem can also cause people to make impulsive and destructive financial decisions. When divorcing a person with a substance abuse problem, it is crucial that you take steps to shelter your assets from misuse. There are several different protections that you can put in place that will help prevent your property from being used to further your spouse’s addiction.

Financial Restraining Orders

When most people hear the term “restraining order,” they think about a protection order for victims of domestic violence. A financial restraining order, however, is a different type of court order that freezes marital assets from being misused during divorce. The order may prohibit both you and your spouse from selling marital property, closing bank accounts, limiting the other spouse’s access to an account, changing beneficiaries, and more. Typically, a temporary financial restraining order lasts only 10 days. However, you can request a longer protection period by attending a court hearing and explaining your reasons for seeking financial protection.

Legal Separation and Postnuptial Agreements

It can be difficult to know for sure when a marriage is beyond saving. If you are not ready to file for divorce but you are worried that you spouse will waste assets on his or her addiction, one option to consider is a legal separation. Spouses who are legally separated are still technically married but they are not responsible for the debt accumulated by the other spouse after the separation has been issued. If you and your spouse reconcile, you can easily terminate the separation, and if the situation does not improve, you still have the option to divorce.

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Naperville divorce attorneysIf your spouse suffers from narcissistic personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, or another type of personality disorder, you may have concerns about how he or she will respond to divorce. Ending a marriage can be extremely difficult no matter the circumstances, but when a spouse suffers from a mental illness, the situation can be particularly stressful. You may encounter legal obstacles during the divorce process that are nearly impossible to manage on your own. Fortunately, a divorce lawyer experienced in handing cases involving mentally ill spouses can help you navigate this tricky situation.

Protect Your Finances  

Sometimes, a mental illness like a personality disorder manifests in impulsive behavior. This may include going on shopping sprees or spending money through a gambling addiction or substance abuse problem. There are a few different ways that you can protect your finances before the divorce process is initiated. If you are not quite ready to divorce or you suspect the divorce process will take a considerable amount of time, you may want to obtain a legal separation.

A separation agreement may clarify which spouses have access to joint bank accounts or it could stipulate that joint accounts be closed and that each spouse opens his or her own account. A legal separation will also prevent you from being responsible for debts accumulated by your spouse before the divorce is finalized. Another option is to obtain a financial restraining order. This is a court order that will freeze marital assets for both parties and prohibit spouses from selling off marital property.

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Naperville divorce lawyerThe Baby Boomer generation has never been one to follow tradition and maintain the status quo. In past generations, it was often said that the longer your marriage lasted, the less likely you were to get a divorce. Today, things are quite different. A large number of older couples are choosing to divorce later in life, and the divorce rate of those 50 and older has doubled over just the past two decades. For those 60 and older, the divorce rate has tripled. This trend makes sense, however. Many older couples today find themselves with grown children out of the house and realize they are no longer happy in their marriage. It is never too late to take a step towards happiness. Gray divorces, however, do have their unique challenges, and baby boomers themselves are not the only group impacted. The millennial children of the baby boomer generation, most of them now adults, are also impacted by their parents decision to divorce. Changing family dynamics can be difficult for everyone involved, including adult children.

All Grown Up

Adult children often struggle to cope with their parent’s separation, despite the assumption that adults should be able to easily handle the split as they are no longer children tied directly to their parent’s decisions. In reality, specialists say that millennials today are feeling the impact of the increasing gray divorce rate in a number of ways. Firstly, adult children of divorce often feel they have no one to talk to about their parents separation. “There is this message you are getting that you should be doing fine,” says one therapist and divorce specialist. “You are all grown up and this is your parent’s decision. Adult children of divorce feel they do not have anyone to talk to about it.”

Additionally, many adult children of divorce say they are burdened with hearing too much information about their parent’s unhappy marriage. While adult are certainly more easily able to cope with a major life change like a divorce, gray divorcees should avoid over-sharing with their children. Instead, older divorcees should seek other confidants to vent and process emotions with.

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