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Smart Uses for Spousal Maintenance After an Illinois Divorce

Posted on in Spousal Maintenance

DuPage County Spousal Maintenance LawyerSpousal maintenance, commonly referred to as spousal support or alimony, is not a part of every divorce in Illinois. However, it may be awarded upon the court’s determination that it is warranted to provide for a spouse’s financial needs, or based on an agreement between spouses, such as a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement or a divorce settlement. Maintenance orders typically do not specify what the recipient must use the payments for, but if you are fortunate enough to be granted maintenance in your divorce, it is a good idea to think carefully about how best to use the funds.

How Can Spousal Support Help?

For budgeting purposes, you can think of spousal support similarly to any other source of income, with the added benefit that as of 2019, it is no longer taxable for the recipient. However, support payments usually come with a definitive end date, so it is important to use them to your advantage while they last. Here are some possible uses of maintenance that you may find beneficial:

  • Paying for basic living expenses. First and foremost, you should ensure that you have the resources available to provide for your own basic needs, including food, clothing, housing, transportation, and utilities. If you are staying in the marital home after your divorce, maintenance could also help you pay the mortgage and other house-related expenses.

  • Covering the costs of healthcare. A common reason for granting maintenance is to help a spouse provide for their extraordinary health needs. Spousal support can help you pay insurance premiums, cover deductibles and other out-of-pocket expenses, and ensure that your home is equipped to accommodate your needs.

  • Supplementing child support. Alimony and child support are treated separately in a divorce, and it is important to ensure that your child support order accounts for all of your child’s needs. However, funds from spousal support can also be used to provide for your children if, for example, you encounter an unexpected need.

  • Furthering your education. When a spousal support obligation ends, you will likely be responsible for providing for your own needs. Using maintenance to help fund your education can help you develop the knowledge and skills you need to find lucrative employment in the future.

  • Starting a business. Starting your own business could also provide a source of income that allows you to support yourself. Along with other funds, spousal support could help you finance some of the start-up costs that make your business possible.

While the possible uses for spousal support may vary, keep in mind that if your former spouse feels you are using the payments for frivolous or unnecessary purchases, they could petition the court for a modification that reduces or terminates their obligation.

Contact a DuPage County Spousal Support Attorney

As you prepare for your divorce, you should be well-informed about your financial resources and future expenses so that you can make a strong case for spousal support if necessary. At Davi Law Group, we can represent your interests throughout the divorce process to help you achieve a fair outcome. Contact our Wheaton divorce lawyers today for a free consultation by calling 630-580-6373.

 Sources:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/075000050k504.htm

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/075000050k510.htm

 

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