Marital Settlement Agreement

Marital Property Division

Picture of Assets

What is a Marital Settlement Agreement?

It is the document that spells out how the marital assets will be divided between the parties.

Who gets what?

First, answer the question, when was it acquired? Typically, if your spouse purchased property, inherited property, received a gift, etc., prior to your marriage, the Court will consider it non-marital property and will assign the property to your spouse.

If your spouse acquired property during your marriage, the Court will consider it marital property and can decide how to divide the property. Exceptions? Call us at (312) 558-9100 to learn more.

Other questions to answer:

Was the property a gift?
Was property inherited?
Was there a prenuptial agreement signed?
Was the property acquired as a result of a trade or exchange?
Has a judgment been entered awarding your spouse property?
Was the property acquired after a judgment of legal separation?
Is a Pension Fund marital property?

If acquired during the marriage, some or all of the pension fund will be considered marital property. To find out how much will be considered marital property, Take the value of the pension fund at the date of marriage and subtract that number from the value of the pension fund at the date the Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage is entered.

Pension Value (Judgment of Dissolution Day)

– Pension Value (Wedding Day)

= Amount the Court may divide between the parties.

Image of Property Settlement

As you may already know, the Court in Illinois does not have to divide property equally. The Court will consider factors such as earning capacity, length of marriage, homemaker contribution, and dissipation of property when making its decision.

What is Dissipation of Marital Assets?

Dissipation occurs when one spouse uses money or assets for purposes unrelated to the marriage after the irreconcilable breakdown of your marriage but before the divorce is finalized. Unless this spending is brought to the attention of the court, you may not get your fair share of the marital property. This may affect your future finances, home values, personal property and more. Call (312) 558-9100 for more information.

Individual Spending Money

Who pays the mortgage?

The Court typically considers all debt, including mortgages to be marital property if it was acquired during the marriage. The Court takes all relevant factors into account when deciding how to divide this debt.

House divided in half

Who will pay for college? Healthcare?

When it comes to your children’s college costs, the Court may divide tuition costs, travel expenses, room & board, and book costs between the parties, typically based on income. Parents are not usually obligated to support a child past high school graduation or their 18th birthday, however, the Court may choose to provide for education expenses. Your child may also be required to supplement his or her own education costs, particularly if an expensive education option is chosen.