When you start the divorce process, there is no way of knowing for sure how long it will take to reach a resolution. In the meantime, it can be very difficult to move forward in your life as you wait for the allocation of marital property and other inherent concerns. Financial obligations are often cause for concern in divorce as well, with issues of spousal maintenanceand child support often taking weeks and months of negotiation or litigation to resolve. But what if you need help right now and cannot wait until the divorce is finalized? What options do you have?
Understanding Temporary Relief
The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act provides that either spouse in a divorce proceeding can ask for temporary spousal maintenance or child support to be ordered while the case is still pending. These temporary orders are intended to provide relief as needed to a financially disadvantaged spouse or a child of the marriage who is entitled to receive child support.
To request temporary maintenance or child support, you will need to file an affidavit with the court stating your need for immediate help. Along with the affidavit, you are required to provide supporting evidence, including but not limited to:
- Income tax returns;
- Pay stubs;
- Verification of necessary expenses; and
- Bank statements.
The court will also take into account the current allocation of parenting time to help establish the appropriateness of a temporary order. Based on the submitted evidence, the court will decide whether to award temporary maintenance or child support, with the order subject to more in-depth scrutiny before the divorce in finalized.
Hearings and Potential Penalties
If your sworn affidavit and submitted documentary evidence are not in agreement, the court may order a hearing to find out why. Should the court find that you filed your affidavit recklessly or with the intent to mislead, you will be subject to “significant penalties and sanctions,” including the attorney’s fees of the other party. With this in mind, it is important to only ask for temporary maintenance or support if you actually need it.
To learn more about your rights and responsibilities during the divorce process, contact an experienced Orland Park family law attorney. We will help you understand your options under the law and will work with you to get you the favorable outcome you deserve. Call 708-518-8200 for your free, no-obligation consultation at Kezy & Associates today.