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Modification & Enforcement/Post-Decree Issues

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Modification & Enforcement/Post-Decree Issues

Post-Decree Modification & Enforcement in Illinois

Unfortunately, for many divorced spouses, the divorce litigation does not stop following the entry of the Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage. In Illinois, a court proceeding that takes place after the entry of a Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage, Parentage Judgment, Judgment for Legal Separation, or other divorce decree is known as a Post-Decree or Post-Judgment Proceeding. The two (2) most common Post-Decree proceedings include those to Modify the Judgment or Enforce the Judgment.

In Post-Decree proceedings to Enforce the Judgment, one party files a petition with the court after the other party fails to satisfy or comply with his or her obligations under the Marital Settlement Agreement or Judgment. Most commonly, Post-Decree Motions for Enforcement relate to a party’s failure to pay child support, failure to pay maintenance (alimony), or failure to transfer or divide property as required under the Marital Settlement Agreement or Judgment. In these situations, it is important to retain the services of an experienced family law attorney, who can enforce the terms of the Judgment against the non-compliant party, and in certain situations, recover interest and/or attorneys’ fees for the willful non-compliance.

In Post-Decree proceedings to Modify the Judgment, one party files a petition with the court to alter, modify, or change the terms of the Marital Settlement Agreement or Judgment. Not all terms of the Marital Settlement Agreement or Judgment can be modified, nor can it be modified just because you do not like or are unhappy with its terms. Under Illinois Law, property settlements are final and not subject to modification.  Whereas, child support modification, maintenance modification, the modification of allocation of parental responsibilities (custody), and modification of parenting time (visitation) may occur upon a showing of a “substantial change of circumstances.” The substantial change of circumstances must have taken place after the entry of the Marital Settlement Agreement or Judgment. 

If unforeseen circumstances have taken place since the entry of your divorce decree that justify the modification of child support, modification of maintenance, modification of parental responsibilities (custody), modification of parenting time, or other terms, it is important to retain the services of an experienced family law attorney.

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