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How Can I Modify the Judgment Order in My Illinois Divorce?

Posted on in Divorce

Kane County divorce attorneysDepending on the couple and their circumstances, a divorce can take weeks or months to finalize. Once the legal proceedings are complete, a final divorce decree will be issued, which officially documents the terms of the divorce. However, sometimes a significant change in circumstances can warrant a modification of part or all of the original order. When a divorce settlement is no longer relevant for a couple or does not fit the needs of their children, it is possible to alter the terms of it through a post-decree modification. If you or your ex-spouse requests a post-divorce order modification for any reason, it is helpful to know the process and how it affects your rights regarding matters such as child-related issues or spousal maintenance.  

Reasons for Changing a Judgment Order

We all know life can change in an instant, whether it be from a sudden medical event such as a heart attack or stroke to unexpectedly losing a job. For instance, child support payments are calculated based on parent’s income. If the paying parent loses his or her job and cannot afford the payments, he or she may request a modification of the child support order. Some other examples of major life events that would justify a modification can include: 

  • Being laid off or fired from a long-time occupation, which impacts child or spousal support (alimony)
  • Being transferred out of the state or country for work, ultimately affecting the allocation of parental responsibilities and/or parenting time
  • Contracting a serious illness that requires extensive medical care 
  • Suffering a catastrophic injury that results in a disability or lost wages
  • One or both ex-spouses remarrying, which typically requires a reduction in spousal or child support payments

Steps for Amending a Judgment Order

To request a change to an order, one of the former spouses must file a “motion to modify” the divorce judgment. This motion is typically filed with the same court that issued the original divorce decree. The main steps to take when modifying an order are:

  1. Fill out the necessary legal forms. 
  2. Draft your motion to modify with reasons for the change. 
  3. Sign your motion with a notary present. 
  4. Assemble your motion with any necessary attachments and make copies. 
  5. File your motion with the court clerk’s office that originally issued your divorce decree. 
  6. Serve your ex-spouse with the paperwork to notify him or her of the request and hearing date. 
  7. Attend mediation or pre-hearing conferences if required. 
  8. Appear in court for your hearing. 

At the hearing, a judge will hear from both parties and any witnesses who can speak on their behalf. Once the judge makes a decision or final ruling on your motion, you could receive the final order that day; otherwise, it will be mailed to you.

Contact a Kane County Divorce Attorney

Once a divorce is finalized, the decree outlines judgment orders regarding child-related issues and more. However, sometimes life events require the original settlement to be altered. In certain cases, one party may request a change or amendment to an order. At the Law Offices of Benedict Schwarz, II P.C., we have helped thousands of clients with post-judgment order modifications and enforcement. Our skilled Elgin post-divorce judgment order lawyers have an understanding of complex divorce issues and how to resolve them favorably. To schedule a complimentary consultation, call our office today at 630-200-4882.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=075000050HPt.+V&ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=6100000&SeqEnd=8400000

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