When a couple decides to dissolve their marriage, they are required to comply with certain disclosure rules. For instance, in Cook County, both parties to a divorce are required to file a financial affidavit with the court and each other. These affidavits play an important role in the property division process, as they are used as a baseline when determining who will retain which assets. In fact, these documents can also be used by judges when they make decisions on temporary spousal support.
Because financial affidavits are so important when it comes to later divorce-related property decisions, they should be taken seriously, as those who fail to provide a complete affidavit could face sanctions from the court and receive a less fair property division settlement. To ensure that your own financial affidavits are filed properly and on time, please contact a Rolling Meadows divorce attorney who is well-versed in mandatory disclosures and can make sure that you comply with all state and court requirements.
What Information Must be Disclosed in a Financial Affidavit?
In Illinois, divorcing spouses are required to disclose all of their financial information in an affidavit, including:
- Their base salaries or wages;
- Any overtime pay, commissions, bonuses, or tips that they have received;
- Income earned from interest, investments, rental properties, partnerships, trusts, or royalties;
- Any income-related deductions from state or federal taxes, retirement payments, health insurance premiums, child support and alimony payments, union dues, and contributions to educational funds;
- Any unemployment, social security, or workers’ compensation benefits;
- The amount of their most recent tax refund;
- Any pension or retirement benefits;
- Military allowances; and
- Funds from an inheritance or gift.
In addition to accounting for all income, the parties will be required to estimate their monthly expenses, including household, transportation costs, personal expenses, and childcare-related costs. Finally, the parties must also disclose all of their material assets, including not only bank account and retirement funds, but also real estate, vehicles, stocks and bonds, business interests, life insurance policies, and personal property like antiques, artwork, or jewelry.
The Purpose of the Financial Affidavit
Financial affidavits serve as a roadmap for a large portion of a couple’s divorce proceedings, as these documents are used by courts to make determinations on how assets will be divided. They also ensure that all separate property is identified and retained by the original owner and will not be subject to division. Finally, judges will use the information disclosed by the parties to establish whether one party will be required to pay spousal maintenance, and if so, in what amount and for how long. Similarly, this information can play an important role when it comes to determining child support and even deciding how parental responsibilities will be shared.
Call Today to Schedule a Free Consultation
For help drafting your own financial affidavit or ensuring that your spouse discloses all of his or her assets, please call the SAM LAW OFFICE LLC at 847-255-9925 today.