It was during the divorce proceedings. Issues relating to abuse and visitation arose. An order of protection was entered against Husband. It protected Wife and the children.

The court ordered Husband to pay $785 per month for child support. It also entered judgment against him for an $11,775 arrearage. This was for back child support. That number later increased to $42,503.50.

Wife later moved to extend that order of protection. The court suspended Husband’s supervised visitation with the children.

Husband filed motions to suspend or terminate his child support obligation. He argued that he was unemployed. The SOS had taken his driver’s license because he owed back support. He could not get a job without his license. The court denied his motions. Husband appealed the Order of Protection against him. He also appealed the child support orders he was ordered to follow.

Throughout the case, Husband represented himself. The Appellate Court denied his appeal arguments. He did not follow the Appellate Court rules of procedure. Also, the child support issue was still being heard in the Trial Court. You can’t have it heard in two courts at the same time.

The Appellate Court said that he is held to the same standard as a licensed attorney. He must comply with the same rules. This is no small job. Husband’s failures in this regard proved fatal with respect to the issues he raised on appeal.

Husband had filed an appeal before in the case. The Appellate Court had explained he needed to follow with appellate requirements. As to his written briefs. And with respect to presenting a sufficient record on appeal. You must have a court reporter’s transcript. Or, a bystander’s report.

The Illinois Supreme Court recognizes the growing number of self-represented litigants in our courts. This poses challenges. The court’s website includes aids for self-represented litigants in the appellate courts. It includes a self-help guide that includes a timeline and check lists. Standardized briefs—provided as fillable forms in a PDF format—are available on the court’s website. http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/Forms/approved/.

In Re Marriage of Sanchez, 2018 IL App (1st) 171075, March 23, 2018.

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