maintenance. Maintenance does not have a strict formula, as does child support, to use to determine amount and length. Therefore, an award of maintenance is solely at the discretion of the presiding judge unless the parties can agree.
Marital Misconduct. The statutory factors set forth in Section 5/504 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act does not allow misconduct during the TERMS OF MAINTENANCE. Maintenance can be either temporary or permanent. Maintenance can be for a fixed period of time, an indefinite period of time, or in gross (in a lump sum that can be paid at once or by payments).
PAYMENT. Payment of maintenance can be from the income of property or from the income of the spouse. Payment can be made directly to the spouse or through an order of withholding from the spouse's paycheck that goes to the State Disbursement Unit (SDU) that keeps a record the payments.
TAX DEDUCTION. The payor of maintenance may receive a tax deduction for payment of maintenance. The payee/recipient of maintenance payments is required to pay taxes on the payments as it is considered income by the IRS. Child support payments cannot be used as a tax deduction according to the IRS unless child support is paid through an order of unallocated child support and maintenance.
Unallocated Child Support and Maintenance. A spouse may be ordered to pay child support and maintenance. These amounts can be set separately or can be combined. Combined child support and maintenance is called unallocated child support and maintenance. A combined order is beneficial to the payor as he/she is able to use the entire amount as a tax deduction rather than just the maintenance payments.