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How Can I Show That My Spouse is Dissipating Marital Assets?

 Posted on December 16, 2020 in Property Division

Wheaton family law attorneysIn an Illinois divorce, couples must divide all marital property equitably according to their personal situation. In order for a fair distribution to occur, it is important to ensure that neither spouse intentionally harms or selfishly uses property belonging to the marital estate in the time leading up to the divorce. If you believe that your spouse has been dissipating marital assets, it is important to work with an attorney to gather evidence and present your case to the court to make the situation right.

What is Considered Dissipation of Assets?

In order for a spouse’s spending or use of property to be considered dissipation of marital assets, Illinois law states that it must take place after the marriage has started to break down irretrievably. The behavior must also involve marital property, generally meaning assets acquired during the marriage that are considered to belong to both spouses. A spouse using his or her own non-marital assets during this time will likely not affect the divorce resolution.

The assets in question must also have been spent in a way that harms the marital estate or benefits only the spouse who does the spending. Possible examples include making an extravagant purchase or going on a solo trip, gambling excessively, destroying marital property, or spending money on an affair outside of the marriage.

Demonstrating the Dissipation of Marital Property

Disputes involving the dissipation of marital assets must be handled by the court in a divorce trial. If you wish to make a case for your spouse’s dissipation, you must file a notice with the court at least 60 days before your trial begins or within 30 days after the discovery period ends. You must also serve notice of your intent to claim dissipation to your spouse. Your notice should include a specific date at which your marriage began to irretrievably fail, as well as dates of dissipation and information about the property that was dissipated.

You will also need to work with your attorney to build a case in support of your claim. This will likely require your testimony regarding the state of your marriage at the date included in your notice, as well as evidence of your spouse’s behavior, perhaps in the form of bank or credit card statements or photographs of property damage. You may also need to testify that you did not receive any benefits from the use of the property. If the court rules in your favor, your spouse could be ordered to make amends financially, or the dissipation of assets could be considered in the court’s decision regarding the overall distribution of marital property.

Contact a DuPage County Divorce Attorney

At the Davi Law Group, our attorneys have experience recognizing the signs of marital asset dissipation, and we can help you gather and present evidence to make a strong case and protect your financial interests. Contact a Wheaton, IL divorce lawyer today at 630-824-3474 for a free consultation.




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