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IL divorce lawyerA compromise leaves everyone unhappy, as the old saying goes, and nowhere is this more true than with a divorce decree. The hallmark of a good divorce decree seems to be that both spouses are left wishing they had more control over the outcome and that the terms of the decree benefitted them more personally.

Although certain parts of a divorce decree can only be changed in very rare circumstances, other parts can be modified to better suit your circumstances. However, it is important to know when a divorce decree modification petition is likely to be approved so you do not waste time or money on unsuccessful petitions.

Which Parts of a Divorce Decree Can Be Appealed?

The least likely part of your divorce decree to be appealed successfully is the property division part. This is because it tends to be the most unforgiving when it comes to modifications; after all, modifying a property division would require transferring money, investments, or real estate between spouses, all of which can be very expensive and time-consuming. The only time that a property division agreement has a chance of being modified is if the appeal is filed within 30 days of the original divorce decree being handed down, and only then if there was a serious error of fact or application of the law.

Kane County divorce lawyerWhen you are going through a divorce, it can feel like the list of things you have to do is neverending. There are dozens of issues that must be addressed before you can finalize your divorce, and resolving them often takes some time. The day you are finally able to sign your name on the dotted line is the day that you can officially say you are divorced—a sigh of relief for many. But what happens when you suddenly remember something that was left out of the divorce agreement? Can you go back and amend your agreement, even if it has already been finalized? It can be difficult to amend a divorce agreement, but it is not impossible with the help of a knowledgeable Illinois divorce lawyer.

Modifying Your Divorce Settlement Through Agreement

The court will not allow certain major issues to go unresolved before a divorce is finalized. These issues include the division of marital property, orders for child support and spousal support, and the allocation of parenting time and parental responsibilities. However, there may be smaller details that slip through the cracks, perhaps regarding the specifics of your parenting plan. The easiest and most peaceful way to address these issues is to discuss them with your ex-spouse so you can come to an agreement. Just like during the divorce process, coming to a mutual agreement can be much more efficient than fighting a contested battle in court and leaving the decision up to the judge.

Modifying Your Divorce Settlement With a Court Order

If urgent issues arise after your divorce that you were not aware of during the divorce process, perhaps related to your former spouse’s dishonest or dangerous behavior, agreeing on modifications peacefully will likely not be possible. In this case, you will likely have to get the courts involved. However, you cannot just modify your divorce settlement for any reason; it has to be significant enough to warrant a change. For example, if your spouse concealed information about their assets or did something to endanger your children, it is important to address these issues as soon as possible.

Illinois Supreme Court Rules on Divorce Maintenance Modification, Legal FeesThe Illinois Supreme Court recently ruled on a post-divorce modification case that started 10 years ago. The case, In Re Marriage of Donna Tuke Heroy and David F. Heroy, dealt with two issues:

  • How much the former husband could reduce his monthly maintenance payments; and
  • Whether the former husband should pay part of the former wife’s legal fees for the case.

Illinois circuit and appellate courts gave conflicting rulings on the case. The supreme court affirmed the circuit court’s calculation for reducing the spousal support payment and approval of the former wife’s request that the former husband contribute to paying her legal fees.


Can I Appeal My Divorce Ruling?

Posted on in Modification of a Divorce Decree

divorce-appeal.jpgJust like any other legal ruling, such as a ruling on a criminal or civil case, you have the right to appeal your divorce settlement if you feel that it was made in error. Like with these other types of rulings, you will need to go through the appeals process to have your divorce case reheard in appellate court. If you are considering appealing the court's decision about your divorce, work with an experienced divorce attorney to ensure that you follow the correct procedure for an appeal and that your interests are fairly represented in court.

The Appeal Process for Divorce Settlements

In Illinois, the right to appeal a divorce ruling is guaranteed by the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act.

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