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Can I Appeal the Court’s Judgment After My Illinois Divorce?

Posted on in Illinois Divorce

Kane County divorce attorneysNo couple really expects to get a divorce when they first enter into a marriage, but unfortunately, not all partners live happily ever after. In some cases, people slowly grow apart for various reasons, causing a relationship to deteriorate over time. In other situations, one spouse may abruptly leave and file for divorce, leaving the other spouse shocked. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding a divorce, there are many issues the two parties will have to resolve before they can legally end their union. A divorce decree is a legal document that specifies the court’s final ruling on matters as well as any judgment orders that make the termination of a marriage official. However, in certain situations, it may be possible to appeal a judgment handed down by the court if you feel it was made erroneously. In other words, an appeal is a formal request of the court to set aside a judgment and hear the case again.   

Divorce-Related Issues That May Be Eligible for Appeal 

A request to change a court’s ruling is called an appeal. The right to appeal is included in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. It is important to note that someone cannot appeal a decision simply because he or she does not agree with it. An appeal is used to address a procedural mistake, a judge’s incorrect interpretation of the law, the admissibility of evidence, or how the law related to the initial proceedings. For example, it is possible for a judge to miscalculate a spouse’s available resources when determining spousal or child support order amounts. In other cases, insufficient evidence may have been presented during the initial court proceedings, resulting in unfair bias toward one spouse. 

The individual who challenges a court’s decision is known as the “appellant,” and the other party is called the “appellee.” When someone appeals a ruling, the case goes to appellate court instead of going back to trial. It is important to note that a person has up to 30 days after the ruling to file an appeal.

Although every divorce decree is unique, the orders within them will outline the rights and duties of each party once the divorce is final. Some of the typical decisions in a divorce settlement that could potentially be appealed include: 

What Happens if a Judgment Is Overturned?

To win an appeal, there must be proof that the law was not properly upheld in some way. Examples of this may include a judge misinterpreting the law as it applies to a particular case, the court misunderstanding the evidence presented, or a procedural error. If an appeal is successful, it is likely that the original judgment or order will be overturned by the appellate court. In Illinois, an appeal is heard by a panel of three judges. That way, a decision is based on more than just one person’s opinion. The panel may proceed with any of the following actions depending on the circumstances of the case:

  • Strike the initial judgment from the record.
  • Order the case to be reviewed or heard again in family court.
  • Correct/amend the judgment in the original divorce decree. 

The appeal process can be long and costly, and the rules governing appeals can be complicated, so it is best to hire an experienced attorney to guide you through the process

Contact a St. Charles Divorce Attorney

If you believe errors were made in your divorce decree or during your divorce, and you are wondering if you can stop an existing order through an appeal, it is imperative that you seek professional legal counsel. At the skilled legal team at Weiler & Lengle P.C., we have a reputation for being fair and honest while achieving the most favorable outcomes for our clients. Our diligent Kane County divorce appeals lawyers will aggressively represent you so your rights are protected, and we will advise you on your best options. Call our office today at 630-382-8050 to schedule a private consultation. 



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