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How Did the Illinois Spousal Maintenance Law Change in 2019?

 Posted on August 31, 2020 in Spousal Maintenance

DuPage County divorce attorney spousal maintenance

Although it occurred slightly over one year ago, it is worth understanding the changes that Illinois made to its spousal maintenance law on January 1, 2019. The law controls not just how a court can determine whether or not one spouse is owed maintenance payments from the other, but how to choose the duration and amounts of those payments. Even if you have the help of an experienced divorce attorney to guide you through the divorce process, it could benefit you to understand whether to expect a court to rule in favor of maintenance payments for you or your spouse. 

2019 Illinois Spousal Maintenance Law

Before deciding whether spousal maintenance applies in a divorce, the court must consider many factors, all of which are detailed in the 2019 Illinois spousal maintenance law:

  • The income and property of each party

  • The needs of both parties

  • A realistic assessment of each party’s potential earnings in the future

  • Whether or not one spouse’s commitment to domestic responsibilities hinders his or her immediate employment opportunities

  • The time necessary for the party seeking maintenance to get the training and education that is needed to pursue meaningful employment

  • The standard of living set during the marriage

  • The age and health of both parties

  • The tax consequences of divorce for both parties

  • Any pre-existing agreement formed by the parties

  • Any miscellaneous factors that a court deems worth consideration

Some of the most significant changes to Illinois’ spousal maintenance law involve determining the quantity and duration of maintenance payments. As of 2019, the amount a spouse is required to pay is calculated by taking 33.3 percent of the payor’s net annual income and reducing that by 25 percent of the payee’s net yearly income. However, the value of maintenance payments cannot exceed 40 percent of the parties’ combined net income. 

If you plan on modifying an existing maintenance order that took effect before January 1, 2019, the maximum value of a payment is the same as above, but the amount will be determined by calculating 30 percent of the payor’s gross annual income and subtracting 20 percent of the payee’s gross annual income.

Contact a Naperville, IL Divorce Lawyer

If you are going through a divorce or legal separation and are either attending mediation sessions with your spouse or preparing for litigation, a skilled DuPage County divorce attorney can help protect your rights to a fair outcome. At Pesce Law Group, P.C., we have a rich history of helping clients work through complicated divorces. To schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help you, call us today at 630-352-2240.




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