Spousal Support Attorneys in Chicago

How Does Alimony Work in Illinois? Everything You Need to Know Before a Divorce

Divorce is one of the most trying things anyone can ever experience. Building an institution for years only to watch it crumble is not how most people envisioned their marriages.

Often, you’ll find yourself reminiscing about all the career ambitions you shelved, opportunities you missed out on, and sacrifices you made.

Now that you are faced with divorce, and your finances and future hang in the balance, did these acts ever matter, and can one ever get compensation?

Fortunately, the law in Illinois is not blind to the sacrifices you made during your marriage. With sound legal advice and passionate lawyers, you can get maximum compensation through alimony and start the next chapter of your life.

Why Choose Us

The journey from divorce to spousal support and eventually finding independence is long and winding. However, there is relief in the fact that you don’t have to go it alone.

More than ever, you need a dedicated team that will provide much-needed legal advice, psychological support, and, most essential of all, answers.

We believe that this team is Petrelli Previtera because:

  • We are an inc 5000 firm
  • Our lawyers bring more than a hundred years of experience in family law to the table
  • We go beyond the billable to offer emotional and psychological support and care
  • We treat each case uniquely, offering sound advice, perspective, and a way forward
  • We treat our clients as humans, try and walk a few miles in their shoes and see things from their perspective
  • We have an almost indisputable track record in family law and an equally impressive reputation that precedes us

For this and much more, look no further than our lawyers at Petrelli Previtera, who will fight for your future and that of your loved ones. You can contact our Chicago offices at (312) 252- 2085.

Or even better, visit our offices at Two Prudential Plaza 180 North Stetson Suite 3500 Chicago, IL 60601.

Alternatively, you can contact our other Schaumburg office at (630) 491-9670 to get our lawyers actively working on your case.

What is Alimony Based On in Illinois

Marriage is a physical, emotional, and financial union. By the time of divorce, the finances of married partners are intertwined, dependent or complementary.

Often, one spouse (male or female) is required to set aside their career aspirations to make way for the other.

Without immediate employment, a support system, and adequate time for one to get on their feet, divorce risks leaving either partner financially compromised. This is where alimony comes in.

While looking at your case, the family law courts in Illinois will consider:

  • The income of each spouse
  • The earning potential of each spouse should they be fully employed
  • The needs of each spouse
  • The effect of additional responsibilities such as childcare on a spouse’s income
  • How long it will take before one can get on their feet
  • Standards of living established during the marriage
  • Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements*

How is Alimony Calculated in Illinois

The amount you receive or pay as spousal support in Illinois is subject to a mathematical formula stated in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act.

This formula is 33% of the payer’s net income minus 25% of the payee’s net income. Another rule is that the amount paid to the payee should not exceed 40% of your combined income.

This formula applies to most divorces so long as the spouses earn a combined gross annual income below $500,000. Above this threshold, the court’s discretion comes in handy in determining alimony payments.

How Long Does One Have to Be Married to Get Alimony in Illinois

In the state of Illinois, one can receive spousal support so long as they are legally married regardless of the time. However, there’s a caveat.

The length of time you receive your spousal support is dependent on how long you were married. For example, it’s possible to receive spousal support after being married for a year.

In that regard, these payments will last for 20% of the time that you were married which is about three months.

When Do You Have to Pay Alimony in Illinois

Contrary to popular belief, alimony in Illinois is not gender-based; this means that either of the married couple can pay spousal support.

That said, you are likely to pay spousal support when you:

  • Earn a higher amount of money than your spouse
  • Have better employment prospects post-divorce
  • Will enjoy a significantly higher standard of living post-divorce

FAQs about Alimony in Illinois

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about spousal support in Illinois, its circumstances, and exemptions.

How Long Does Spousal Support in Illinois Last?

Spousal support in Illinois depends on the length of the marriage. In this regard, the longer you were married, the longer your spousal support will last post-divorce.

  • 1 – 5 years of marriage – 20%
  • 5 years of marriage – 24%
  • 6 years of marriage- 28%
  • 7 years of marriage – 32%
  • 8 years of marriage- 36%
  • 9 years of marriage- 40%
  • 10 years of marriage- 44%
  • 11 years of marriage- 48%
  • 12 years of marriage- 52%
  • 13 years of marriage- 56%
  • 14 years of marriage- 60%
  • 15 years of marriage- 64%
  • 16 years of marriage- 68%
  • 17 years of marriage- 72%
  • 18 years of marriage- 76%
  • 19 years of marriage- 80%

Past 20 years of marriage, the judge may decide that spousal support lasts as long as the marriage or indefinitely.

Is alimony in Illinois Taxable Income?

No. Alimony is not considered taxable income. Hence it is neither taxed on payment nor receipt by either party.

Does my child support affect alimony?

Yes. Child support and alimony cannot exceed half of the payor’s income. In such instances, the courts will be forced to change.

Can alimony be modified?

Yes. Death, remarriage, and a change in income are some of the reasons that can lead to a change in alimony agreements.

Lean on Experience

No two cases are the same, and there’s nobody better suited to bring a unique perspective to your situation than our lawyers at Petrelli Previtera.

With our lawyers on your side of the ring, divorce won’t have to be a bitter end but a new beginning full of hope and optimism instead.

 To get started, schedule a consultation at one of our offices and start reaping the benefits of competent and hard-hitting representation.