Wheaton, IL divorce decree appeals lawyerThe distribution of marital property is usually among the most contentious areas of divorce proceedings. Not only can it get very complex, but people often have strong opinions about what is theirs and what is their spouse’s. In the State of Illinois, the law follows something called equitable distribution, which means that any marital assets involved in divorce proceedings are not required to be split 50/50, but must be split fairly. There comes a time in divorce proceedings when a legal ruling will be made regarding the property division. 

Once the court hands down a judgment regarding property division, the matter is considered settled. Or is it? In Illinois, there are options for individuals interested in appealing a property division judgment. However, the process for such decisions is rigorous and often requires highly competent legal counsel to appeal a property division judgment successfully. For example, suppose you are interested in appealing a property judgment. In that case, it is strongly recommended that you hire legal counsel knowledgeable in the appeals process so that your appeal can succeed. 

Requirements for Appealing a Property Division Order

As stated previously, appealing a property division order is a complex process. As a result, if you feel you need to appeal, your legal counsel or the presiding judge may have gotten it wrong the first time. This is why hiring knowledgeable attorneys in the first place is essential so that an appeal is not necessary. Nonetheless, specific requirements need to be met to have a chance at successfully appealing a property division judgment. 

The first requirement is to submit your appeal within 30 days after the original judgment has been handed down. You must appeal within the timeframe to ensure your appeal is not denied. However, sometimes an exception can be made if your spouse deliberately hid assets from you, which can be very difficult to prove. 

It is also important to understand that an appeal is not a re-do for the entire divorce decree. Considering your appeal, the court will not go back into your case to the beginning and work its way through all of your property. Instead, they will look at how the first judge initially heard and decided upon the case. The court hearing your appeal is interested in whether the first judge acted according to the law and whether all the facts were available and considered correctly. 

What is Abuse of Discretion, and Why Does It Matter?

Within family law, abuse of discretion occurs if a higher court deems that the first judge acted in a way that failed to take into account testimony and evidence or did something to silence witness testimony. If your appeal is successful, the higher court will likely send your case back to the original court with recommendations for what needs to be reviewed and rejudged. Or else the higher court can reverse the initial decision entirely. 

Contact a DuPage County Division of Marital Property Attorney

As stated previously, selecting a knowledgeable attorney in the first place is vital so that you do not need to appeal a property division judgment since doing so is very difficult. Contact the distinguished DuPage County division of marital property lawyers with The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C. to ensure you get it right the first time. Call 630-462-9500 today for a private consultation.



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