After your divorce is finalized, you may still run into family law issues that need to be resolved. For instance, if your former spouse fails to meet his or her obligations, or if your financial circumstances change substantially, further legal intervention may be necessary. Interpretation, modification, enforcement, reformation, and termination (of an obligation) are the five main paths to use to seek court involvement once the divorce is over and a judgment for dissolution of marriage has been filed with the court.
At Buffalo Grove Law Offices, we are here to support you both during and after your divorce. With more than 25 years of legal experience, our firm’s Arlington Heights custody modification lawyer, Angela E. Peters, can assist you with any post-divorce issues that may arise, including interpretation of decree provisions, modification of court-ordered obligations, enforcement of existing court orders and reformation of finalized agreements.
We utilize litigation, mediation and arbitration to protect the rights and interests of both plaintiffs and defendants who need help in resolving post-decree disputes. Our firm serves clients in Arlington Heights, Hoffman Estates, Palatine, Buffalo Grove and throughout the Chicago, Illinois, metropolitan area.
The Five Main Paths Used To Modify A Divorce Agreement
There are five main paths that are used in order to modify a divorce agreement after it has been finalized. They are:
1. Interpretation: Sometimes, circumstances arise post-divorce that make it clear that the parties have very different understandings of their obligations under the divorce decree. We advocate on behalf of clients when a judicial decision is necessary to clarify the meaning of decree provisions. We also assist clients in using mediation and arbitration to facilitate cost-effective resolutions to interpretation issues.
2. Modification: Often a substantial change in circumstances affects the ability of a party to comply with the terms of a divorce settlement. When these situations occur, a court-approved post-divorce modification is necessary to alter child support payments, child custody, visitation and spousal maintenance (alimony) obligations. A loss of employment and the need to relocate to a different state are common reasons why an individual may need to modify a divorce judgment. We represent clients who are seeking a modification, as well as those who are opposing the change.
3. Enforcement: Frustration and financial difficulty can result when one party fails to abide by the terms of a divorce decree. We represent clients who are requesting or resisting the enforcement of child support, child custody, visitation and spousal maintenance orders. Whether we are able to negotiate an advantageous resolution, or it is necessary to file contempt charges, you can count on Ms. Peters for aggressive representation both in and out of the courtroom.
4. Reformation: Sometimes, a mutual mistake by the parties means that changes need to be made to a particular divorce decree provision. In this situation, we can help clients with petitioning the court for reformation (adjustment) of a divorce decree.
5. Termination: Child support will terminate no earlier than the date on which the child covered by the order will attain the age of 18. However, if the child will not graduate from high school until after attaining the age of 18, then the termination date shall be no earlier than the date on which the child’s high school graduation will occur or the date on which the child will attain the age of 19.
Enforcement Of Orders
There are orders to be enforced both prior to and after the entry of a final judgment. For example, a person who is ordered to pay child support order either during or after the divorce may not be current in those payments. Then, the other party may go back to court to have the Court enforce its order of support. The non-paying party will likely face a Petition for Rule to Show Cause (contempt proceeding) to make that person pay the ordered support and likely, also pay the attorney fees of the person who must resort to court assistance.
Contact A Buffalo Grove Child Support Enforcement Lawyer
If you need assistance with child support enforcement, modification of a child custody arrangement or any other post-decree issue, we can help you understand your rights and options. Call our office at (847) 772-8579 or contact us online to arrange an affordable initial consultation with an experienced divorce lawyer.
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