Are You Curious about Your Entitlement to Alimony Payments in Your Separation in Chicago? If You were Never Married, Here’s What You Should Know
Most Chicagoans are fairly familiar with the process of divorce in Illinois. Under Illinois marriage and family laws, a married couple that no longer wishes to be married can file a petition for dissolution of marriage in Chicago, and go through the court process to hammer out all of the various issues in a divorce and, ultimately, finalize an end to the marriage. Most Chicagoans are, furthermore, also aware that in a Chicago divorce case, one spouse may be entitled to “alimony” or “spousal maintenance” payments from the other spouse. However, what many Chicagoans are probably not as familiar with is exactly what happens in the case of a separation when a couple was never married in the first place, and whether support, such as alimony, is something that one party to the unmarried couple may be awarded if a court case is brought. To help Chicagoans better understand their rights when they separate without being married, we explore the issue of alimony when a couple is separated but was never married.
What is Alimony in Chicago?
At the outset, alimony payments – also called “spousal maintenance” payments – are payments made by one spouse (usually with more earning power) to the other spouse (usually with less earning power). The purpose of alimony payments is to help support a spouse who was previously financially dependent on the other spouse through the course of the marriage. In a Chicago divorce case, if there is otherwise no agreement between divorcing spouses, a court will use a standard equation set by law to determine alimony payments.
Alimony for Individuals who were Financially Dependent but Never Married to their Ex?
Under Illinois marriage and family laws, alimony may be awarded to one party (or soon-to-be ex-spouse) in the course of divorce proceedings. In other words, a couple must have been legally married and must be seeking a divorce in order for one soon-to-be ex-spouse to be entitled to alimony from the other soon-to-be ex-spouse. Therefore, if a person is separating from their partner in Chicago, but was never married to them, they would not be entitled to alimony payments.
Other Options for Unmarried Individuals in Chicago
Unmarried couples and unmarried individuals in a couple may have other options when it comes to protecting themselves financially. If you are separating from your partner in Chicago, but you are not married, it is a good idea to learn about your rights and options by speaking to an experienced Chicago separation lawyer as soon as possible.
If you are in Chicago and you are separating from your partner, but you were never married, contact the experienced Chicago separation lawyers at the law firm Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC. The experienced Chicago separation lawyers at Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC offer a confidential consultation to learn about your unique case and to see if they can help fight for you. Contact Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC and speak to a lawyer about your rights and options today.