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DuPage County divorce attorney dissipation of assets

Property division is often one of the most consequential aspects of divorce – especially for high-net-worth individuals. Some divorcing spouses reduce the value of the marital estate through excessive or careless spending or even intentionally destroying assets. This is referred to as the “dissipation of assets.” When a spouse spends money or property on a purpose not related to the marriage immediately prior to divorce, the other spouse may be entitled to compensation for the dissipated assets. Through a dissipation claim, you may be able to recover the value of assets your soon-to-be ex-spouse spent on extravagant vacations, gifts, or other unnecessary purchases.

Illinois Law Regarding Dissipation of Assets

The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) contains a provision defining dissipation and addressing how wasted or destroyed assets should be handled in a divorce. Dissipative spending is excessive spending that does not benefit the marriage in any way. So, spending money on groceries, home repairs, or other necessary, reasonable expenses would not qualify as dissipation. Examples of dissipation may include:

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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:

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DuPage County divorce attorney QDRO

A Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) is necessary when dividing retirement savings. Without it, the payee can be subject to tax penalties, and there is no guarantee that an employer or retirement plan provider will adhere to your divorce decree alone. Because QDROs are necessary so often, most retirement plan providers have standard forms to help you and your attorney create a draft. If you suspect that the division of retirement assets will be complicated, you can still draft your own QDRO. Either way, it is worth understanding some common mistakes people make when creating QDROs and how you can avoid them. Regardless of your situation, you should work with a reputable divorce attorney you trust to ensure that your financial interests are protected.

Typical QDRO Errors

Even though many retirement plan providers have boilerplate forms for you and your attorney to use as a reference when drafting your QDRO, there are still several common mistakes that you should avoid:

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