Legal Memorandum: Court’s standard of review after a denial of a party’s request for maintenance in a marriage dissolution

Issue: Under Illinois law, on appeal what is the standard of review applied to a denial of a party’s request for maintenance in a marriage dissolution case?

Area of Law: Family Law
Keywords: ; Request for Maintenance;Standard of Review; Abuse of Discretion
Jurisdiction: Illinois
Cited Cases: None
Cited Statutes: None
Date: 03/01/2016

"As a general rule, ‘a trial court’s determination as to the awarding of maintenance is presumed to be correct.’" In re Marriage of Heroy, 385 Ill.App.3d 640, 650 (2008) (quoting In re Marriage of Donovan, 361 Ill.App.3d 1059, 1063 (2005)). "Because maintenance awards are within the sound discretion of the trial court, we will not disturb a maintenance award absent an abuse of discretion." Id. "An abuse of discretion exists only where we can conclude that no reasonable person would take the view adopted by the trial court." Id. at 651.

Section 504(a) of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (Act) enumerates various factors the circuit court should utilize when considering a maintenance award. [statref]750 ILCS 5/504(a) (West 2014)[/statref]. Two of these factors are "the income and property of each party, including marital property apportioned and non-marital property assigned to the party seeking maintenance[, ] [and] the tax consequences of the property division upon the respective economic circumstances of the parties[.]" 750 ILCS 5/504(a)(1), (9) (West 2014).

In re Marriage of Weger, No. 5-15-0141, 2016.IL.0000241 (Ill. App. Dist. 5 02/02/2016) (VersusLaw).

Date: March 1, 2016