Going through a divorce is painful, even if both you and your spouse agree to the terms. In cases where there are disputes regarding marital property division, debates over who is entitled to what can lead someone you once trusted to act in ways you never would have imagined. In any divorce proceeding, having an adequate inventory of both debts and assets is important to ensuring both are divided fairly. Unfortunately, in some cases, one of the spouses may attempt to hide property from the other to get more than their fair share.
Under Illinois Dissolution of Marriage statutes, any property acquired by the couple after the marriage and before divorce proceedings are initiated will be divided in a way that is equitable to both parties, taking into consideration the income, earning potential, assets, and debts each individually owns. Property you owned prior to marriage or that was inherited or given to you as a personal gift is excluded. Property subject to equitable distribution includes:
Unfortunately, in some situations, rather than making a full disclosure one of the spouses may attempt to hide assets from the other. Signs of hidden assets include the following:
In addition to hiding marital property, a soon to be ex-spouse may opt to frivolously squander assets. This is known as dissipation, and may include giving large sums of cash to a person they are having an affair with, spending lavishly on personal items or entertainment, or selling marital property for substantially less than what it is worth. A 2016 Forbes report on dissipation recommends that if you are experiencing marital problems, you should keep an eye on bank account and credit card statements in order to spot this type of spending before it gets out of hand.
If you are contemplating a marital separation, contact Sabuco, Beck, Hansen & Massino, P.C. today. Our experienced Will County divorce and property division attorneys act as a strong legal advocate on your behalf, to help ensure your rights and interests are protected.
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