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New Maintenance Calculation Taking Effect June 1, 2018

Posted by Christopher Holwell | Nov 03, 2017 | 0 Comments

New Maintenance Calculations

Some of the changes are geared to clean-up the language to make it gender-neutral. This change rewrites the calculation for the duration of spousal maintenance and raises the combined income ceiling for couples to whom the maintenance guidelines apply from $250,000 to $500,000.

"Custody" is replaced with "parental responsibility" in an attempt to reduce strife between divorcing parties. These specific changes seem to be an attempt to make that language the same throughout the ILCS.

Calculating Maintenance

One of the biggest changes in 750 ILCS 5/504, which involves the calculation of spousal maintenance and its duration increases the gross-income ceiling for cases to which the guidelines apply from $250,000 per year to $500,000 per year.

Another change in addition to the gross-income ceiling for calculating maintenance is the modification to the duration. Under the present calculation, the duration of maintenance is calculated based on five-year blocks of time.

• 0 to 5 years, the multiple is .20;
• 5 to 10 years, the multiple is .40;
• 10 to 15 years, the multiple is .60;
• 15 to 20 years, the multiple is .80; and
• 20 or more years, the court may either make the duration equal to the length of the marriage (i.e., a multiple of 1.0) or make maintenance permanent.

Today, for example, if the marriage lasts 5 years and one day, the multiplier doubles versus the 5-year marriage. It's foreseeable that this method can lead to fairness issues or used tactically. The new calculation seems to be the more logical approach.

Under the new calculation:

  • less than 5 years, the multiple is .20;
  • 5 years or more but less than 6 years .24;
  • 6 years or more but less than 7 years .28;
  • 7 years or more but less than 8 years .32;
  • 8 years or more but less than 9 years .36;
  • 9 years or more but less than 10 years .40;
  • 10 years or more but less than 11 years .44;
  • 11 years or more but less than 12 years .48;
  • 12 years or more but less than 13 years .52;
  • 13 years or more but less than 14 years .56;
  • 14 years or more but less than 15 years .60;
  • 15 years or more but less than 16 years .64;
  • 16 years or more but less than 17 years .68
  • 17 years or more but less than 10 years .72;
  • 18 years or more but less than 10 years .76;
  • 19 years or more but less than 10 years .80;
  • 20 years or more, length of the marriage or an indefinite term.

As we can see, a one day difference doesn't double the modifier; the one-day filing difference as in the above example, only increases the modifier from .20 to .24 rather than doubling under the present calculation.

About the Author

Christopher Holwell

Christopher W. Holwell Attorney/Principal 9 years with Holwell Group, LLC/Law Offices of Christopher W. Holwell 19 years as a trial attorney for Divorce, Real Estate, Insurance Coverage, and Injury. One of my biggest accomplishments in a divorce case was getting a multi-million dollar settlement from a spouse that was not disclosing several million dollars in assets. In addition, I was able to get the other spouse to fully fund the one child's college education as part of the settlement. Another of my biggest accomplishments in an injury case was procuring a several hundred thousand dollar settlement for my 14-year-old client who suffered a knee injury during an after school athletic program. I was able to get all interested parties to set aside funds for the client's college fund in case his athletic scholarship was affected. I am constantly attending Continuing Legal Education seminars to stay up to date on any changes in the law that might affect any of my clients. My primary areas of practice are Divorce, Family Law, Real Estate, and Insurance Litigation. Most of my clients are concerned with what to do or what not to do when the first come to see me for a consultation or appointment. Their next concern is usually financial; what are they going to do now? How are they going to survive? I tell each client, based on their unique situation, what their options are and what will happen next. I am there for them from start to finish. The best part of my job is doing the work the client is too upset to do. While I understand the emotional roller-coaster clients go through, my experience allows me to step outside the emotion point of view, and use the law and facts to benefit my clients to the best of my ability. I was born in Oak Lawn, Illinois, was raised in Bridgeview up until college and now live in Lake County, Illinois with my family (my wife and three children.) I still have family in Bridgeview, Oak Lawn, and Orland Park. A little-known fact about me is that I love astronomy and anything to do with the stars and planets. In my free time, I tend to read a lot, usually late at night and play with my children and new Newfoundland puppy, Indy (Indiana Jones) I am admitted to practice law in Illinois and all Federal Courts including the Supreme Court of the Untied States of America. I treat my clients like friends. You can reach me at: (312) 648-6115 [email protected] [email protected] Linkedin: Christopher W. Holwell Facebook: Holwell Law Group, LLC


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