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Wheaton Asset Dissipation Attorney

Winfield wasting marital assets attorney

Lawyer for Wasteful and Reckless Spending of Marital Assets in DuPage County

At the time of a divorce in the State of Illinois, the couple's marital assets must be fairly divided between the two spouses. You may find that your spouse is willing to cooperate with you to reach a property division agreement that meets both of your needs, but unfortunately, this is not always the case. Sometimes, a person will do anything possible to try to put their spouse at a disadvantage during the divorce process. One such behavior that you may encounter is your spouse's dissipation or wasting of marital assets.

At Hensley Sendek Law, our Attorney Jessica Sendek has over 10 years of family law experience, and she has helped her clients resolve complex financial issues during the divorce process, including those related to the dissipation of assets. If you have found your spouse engaging in this behavior, we can help you take legal action to hold him or her accountable and prevent it from unfairly influencing the division of marital property.

What Qualifies As Dissipating Assets in Illinois?

In order for a spouse's use of marital assets to qualify as dissipation, two things must be true: the assets must have been used for a purpose unrelated to the marriage with no benefits for the other spouse, and the behavior in question must have occurred after the marriage started to undergo an irretrievable breakdown. Based on these criteria, a variety of behaviors can be considered dissipation. Common examples include:

  • The use of marital assets to gamble, pay for a personal trip, or purchase personal luxury items
  • The use of marital assets to purchase items for a person with whom the spouse is having an extramarital affair
  • The transfer of marital assets to a private account or to a friend or family member
  • The intentional or careless failure to pay taxes, mortgage payments, or other bills related to the marriage
  • The intentional or careless destruction of marital property

How Does Dissipation Affect the Divorce Process?

You may have reason to believe that your spouse has dissipated assets before you file for divorce, or it may come to your attention based on information obtained during the discovery period before your divorce trial. In either case, you will need to provide notice to the court and to your spouse of your intent to claim dissipation at least 60 days before the trial or within 30 days after the end of the discovery period. You will also need to identify when the dissipation happened, as well as which assets or properties were wasted.

As your trial approaches, your attorney will help you prepare evidence and testimony to support your claim of dissipation. Bank statements, tax returns, and other financial documents can help you establish the dissipation of certain assets, and you will also need to demonstrate that your marriage was already in the process of breaking down when the dissipation occurred. Keep in mind, however, that the court will not consider events that you have known about for more than three years, or that happened more than five years before the divorce filing.

If the court finds that dissipation of assets occurred, this is one of the factors that it will consider in the equitable division of marital property. Often, this means that the spouse who dissipated assets will have to reimburse the other spouse, and they will therefore be granted a lesser portion of the marital assets than they would have likely received if there had been no dissipation.

Contact a Warrenville Dissipation of Assets Attorney

We can help you present your claim of dissipating assets to the court or defend you against your spouse's claims. Contact us at 630-358-9029 for a free consultation regarding any financial concerns or other issues in your divorce. We represent clients in Wheaton, Naperville, West Chicago, Winfield, Warrenville, Lisle, Lombard, Glen Ellyn, and throughout DuPage County and the surrounding areas.

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