Each spouse going through a divorce must complete a financial affidavit, also known as a comprehensive financial statement. The affidavit is a standardized form which is used in every county in Illinois. The blank affidavit can be found here.
An affidavit is like sworn testimony in court in that the person filling it out affirms that it contains truthful information. If someone lies on an affidavit then that person is subject to criminal prosecution for perjury; however, criminal prosecution rarely occurs.
In the financial affidavit each spouse provides information regarding four primary financial categories: 1) how much you make (income), 2) how much you spend (expenses), 3) how much you have (assets), 4) and how much you owe (debts). A spouse must support this information with documentation such as tax returns, pay stubs, and bank statements. A divorce attorney will then investigate the other spouse’s representations to make sure the information is accurate and complete. This investigation will include reviewing the supporting documents, and probably issuing discovery to the other spouse and subpoenas to employers, financial institutions, etc.
A financial affidavit is the starting point for all financial considerations in a divorce. The financial affidavit will be an important reference when calculating child support, maintenance, and distributing the marital estate. If a party intentionally or recklessly files an inaccurate or misleading financial affidavit, then courts can impose significant penalties and sanctions.
The Botti Law Firm, P.C. has been practicing family law for nearly 50 years in DuPage and Cook County. Please contact one of our attorneys at (630)573-8585 if you have any questions or would like to schedule a free consultation.
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