Who Can You Subpoena During Your Divorce?

 Posted on April 30, 2020 in Divorce

Who Can You Subpoena During Your Divorce?Filing a subpoena for a witness to testify in court is rarely necessary in a divorce case. A subpoena for documents, known as a subpoena duces tecum, is used frequently. Character witnesses were more common before Illinois became a no-fault divorce state, which made it so that couples no longer needed to cite issues such as infidelity as a reason for divorce. Now, financial records are the most vital evidence you can obtain with a subpoena, and documents can give you all the information you need. An experienced divorce lawyer knows who you need to subpoena to find that information.

Your Spouse

When gathering information in preparation for your divorce, you may realize that there are vital documents that you do not have access to, such as:

  • Financial statements
  • Receipts
  • Contracts

Your spouse may possess those documents and would ideally be willing to share them if you ask. If your spouse refuses to share the documents, you can obtain a subpoena requesting the documents, which would force them to comply.

Your Spouse’s Employer

Divorce lawyers will often file a subpoena with a third party if the opposing spouse does not have the documents or if they are skeptical about the information given to them. For instance, you may suspect that your spouse is underreporting their income. By filing a subpoena with your spouse’s employer, you can obtain a record of how much your spouse has been paid going back months or years. It may be that your spouse is hiding their income or found a way to temporarily deflate it in response to your divorce.

Financial Institutions

Your spouse may be holding financial assets such as savings and retirement benefits in separate accounts that you cannot access. Filing a subpoena with the financial institution can force it to disclose the balance in your spouse’s account and their activity history. This is sometimes how a divorce lawyer is able to prove that your spouse has been hiding assets.

Your Spouse’s Therapist

In very limited situations, you may be able to obtain records from your spouse’s sessions with a mental health therapist if the information is relevant and vital to your divorce. For instance, the therapy session records may be relevant if you are claiming that your spouse’s mental illness makes them unfit as a parent. However, the court has more stringent requirements for issuing a subpoena for a therapist’s records, which are protected by confidentiality agreements.

Contact a Kane County Divorce Lawyer

The discovery of financial information is important for dividing your marital properties and calculating support payments during a divorce. A St. Charles, Illinois, divorce attorney at Goostree Law Group will file a subpoena when necessary to obtain that information. Schedule a free consultation by calling 630-584-4800.



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