Terminating maintenance is a tall task for attorneys in Wisconsin because a termination of maintenance is permanent. To terminate maintenance, attorneys must show that the purposes or goals of maintenance, fairness and support, are no longer being accomplished under the circumstances confronting the parties at the time of termination. In termination cases, the courts will consider the style of living that the parties enjoyed during the marriage, the current income of the parties, and the assets of the parties. Courts may even consider the value of property received in the initial property division.
The question becomes: what to do when parties are hiding or shielding assets from the court’s consideration? In these cases, extensive requests for information, review of banking information, and reviews of credit card statements is necessary. In some cases, a deposition to confront the opposing party may even be necessary. Once obtained, the above documentation and information can show the court that the purpose of maintenance is no longer being served and termination is necessary.
It is crucial for parties to obtain this information weeks, or even months, prior to the hearing on termination so that the attorney can be efficient and effective when it comes time to provide argument to the court. At Hawley Kaufman & Kautzer, we pride ourselves on diligently prosecuting these types of termination motions and excel at tracking down each and every piece of financial information needed to terminate our clients’ maintenance obligations. If a party chooses to move forward without an attorney, they should be prepared for a time consuming and lengthy investigation.