Dissipation of Marital Assets in Illinois

marital estate, divorce negotiations, Illinois divorce attorney,The division of marital assets during divorce can be one of the most emotionally and fiscally challenging steps of the divorce process. Not only is the division of marital assets challenging because most individuals will have to undergo serious lifestyle changes to be able to carry on living in the same way that he or she was able to with a partner, but also because dividing marital assets can be the final tangible indicator that the marriage is truly over. And yet one aspect of marital asset division that makes the process even more complicated is if one partner engages in dissipation of marital assets, either before or during the divorce process.

According to the Journal of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), “dissipation in its simplest form occurs when a party conceals, conveys, or wastes marital assets during the dissolution process or in anticipation of divorce.” This can include trips or dates with a new boyfriend or girlfriend, unnecessarily risky investments or money spent on prostitution, alcoholism, or gambling. In Illinois the definition is a bit more defined. In Illinois, if either partner engages in reckless financial behavior, or activity perceived as beneficial only to one of the spouses for any reason unrelated to the marriage while the marriage is undergoing an irreconcilable breakdown, this can be considered dissipation as well. After Illinois redefined dissipation to include this type of behavior, many other states followed suit.

If you suspect that your soon-to-be-ex-spouse is endangering your financial future by engaging in dissipation, you will need to file a specific case in court. If this type of case is filed, the charged spouse must be able to prove, through clear and convincing evidence, that the funds were in fact spent in a manner that benefited both spouses. There is not a statue of limitations as to when a person can file a dissipation suite in Illinois, but for it to be the most resonant the case should be filed as soon as possible, and the charged spouse should not be blindsided with the charge.

If you think you have a dissipation case, the most important first step is to seek legal counsel. Contact an experienced Aurora family law attorney today.


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This entry was posted in Division of Property, Divorce, Divorce Finances, DuPage County divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney and tagged , , , , , , .

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