Wife was not entitled to rehabilitative maintenance. She had been cohabiting with another man on a continuing, conjugal basis. There had been no subsequent reconciliation with her husband.

“Unless otherwise agreed by the parties in a written agreement set forth in the judgment or otherwise approved by the court, the obligation to pay future maintenance is terminated upon the death of either party, or the remarriage of the party receiving maintenance, or if the party receiving maintenance cohabits with another person on a resident, continuing conjugal basis.”

The trial court’s finding that wife cohabited with another man (not her husband) on a “resident, continuing conjugal basis” is not against the manifest weight of the evidence. The record reveals that they shared meals, bank accounts, household chores, and credit accounts. They exchanged holiday and birthday gifts. The two also took vacations together and maintained a sexual relationship.

Wife had argued that she had not been paid maintenance yet. Therefore, it is not being terminated. Shouldn’t she receive it first before her ex-husband’s obligation to pay it is terminated?

The Court stated that ‘There should be no distinction between whether wife’s obligation is terminated before it ripens or after maintenance is ordered. If a party died before maintenance was awarded, or if a party remarried before the award, there would be no reason for awarding maintenance only to then require it to be terminated. Similarly, if a party who seeks maintenance cohabits before maintenance is awarded, the award should be denied’.

The trial court’s decision to deny temporary maintenance to wife was not contrary to the manifest weight of the evidence.

IRMO Toole, 273 Ill. App.3d 607 (2nd Dist., 1995)

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