100 North LaSalle Street, Suite 1111,
Chicago, IL 60602


call us312-984-1514

Chicago Spousal Support Lawyer

Chicago Spousal Maintenance Attorney

Attorney for Maintenance Concerns in Cook County, Illinois

When you are facing the possibility of divorce, you may have many concerns about the challenges that lie ahead. You may worry about your children and how they will handle the situation. You might even have doubts about adjusting to life on your own. While you might look forward to becoming more independent eventually, how will you survive financially in the meantime?

Single-income households are much less common than they were a few decades ago, but it is not unusual for one spouse to earn far more than the other does. In a situation of this type, an order of spousal support—known as "maintenance" under Illinois law—might be necessary to alleviate the financial impact of a divorce on the lower-earning party. The team at The Law Offices of Curtis Bennett Ross, LLC is fully up to date on all of the laws that pertain to spousal support in an Illinois divorce, and we will work hard on your behalf to ensure that you have the resources you need to begin building a happier, healthier new life.

Dependable Lincoln Park Alimony Attorney

The terms spousal support, maintenance, and alimony are often used interchangeably, and they all refer to payments that one spouse makes to the other following a divorce or legal separation. When spousal support is part of a divorce judgment, the spouse who generates more income will generally make payments to the lower-earning spouse each month for a certain period of time.

It is important to understand, however, that spousal support is not automatically ordered in every case. If there is a valid agreement between the parties, such as a prenuptial agreement or a negotiated settlement, that stipulates the payment of maintenance, the court will usually recognize the agreement and include the terms in the divorce decree. In the absence of an agreement, the court will make a determination regarding the necessity and appropriateness of maintenance on a case-by-case basis.

Illinois law specifies a number of factors that the court must consider when deciding whether to order spousal support, including:

  • Each party's income, assets, and available financial resources
  • Each party's current and anticipated needs
  • Each party's current and anticipated employability and earning capacity
  • The length of the marriage
  • The standard living enjoyed by the spouses throughout the marriage
  • Any contributions either spouse made to the other's career, including those of a stay-at-home parent
  • The anticipated time needed for the lower-earning spouse to become financially self-sufficient, if possible
  • Whether additional property is being allocated to the lower-earning spouse in place of maintenance

If the court finds a need for maintenance, the next step is to calculate the amount of the payments and the duration of the order. In cases where the spouses' combined gross income is under $500,000 annually, the law provides a formula for determining the payment amount as a function of each spouse's income. The law also specifies a method for establishing how long payments will be required. The duration of a maintenance order will be set as a percentage of the length of the marriage, and longer marriages will lead to proportionately longer orders. If the marriage lasted at least 20 years, the court has the option of ordering permanent support.

Protecting Your Financial Best Interests

Attorney Curtis Bennett Ross is a distinguished family law attorney with more than 30 years of experience in handling divorce cases involving spousal support considerations. He was also instrumental in developing many of the divorce laws currently in effect in Illinois as part of the Family Law Section Counsel for the Illinois State Bar Association. In addition, Mr. Ross is a Certified Public Accountant who has been recognized by various courts as a financial expert. With his background, training, and experience, he is fully equipped to help you manage the financial side of ending your marriage.

When you choose The Law Offices of Curtis Bennett Ross, LLC to handle your divorce, we will sit down with you to discuss your case so that we can gain a complete understanding of what you will need to move forward. Our team helps those who are seeking spousal support as well as those who are being asked to make maintenance payments. No matter what challenges you may be facing, we will work with you in developing a strategy designed to get the best outcome possible for your unique circumstances.

Call 312-984-1514 for Guidance

If you have additional questions about spousal support orders in an Illinois divorce, contact our office to get the answers you need. Call 312-984-1514 to schedule a free limited consultation with Attorney Curtis Bennett Ross today. Our team serves clients in Chicago, Bucktown, Lincoln Park, River North, Andersonville, Wrightwood, West Loop, Old Town, The Loop, Wrightwood, and throughout Cook County.

Back to Top