Can You Enforce a Notarized Agreement For Support in a Divorce?
Hey, what's up everyone? Divorce attorney in Chicago. Bobby Buchanan. This is Illinois divorce TV. Today's question is, is a notarized agreement signed by you and your spouse regarding child support enforceable in court? So in this question, or this, uh, situation, you and your spouse have separated, and let's say that you're the wife and he's the husband and you've stayed in the house, the ma, the marital residence, as we call it, with your two kids who are 10 and 12 years old. As part of your separation, you and your spouse have decided that he's going to pay you $1,000 a month for child support. And you have typed it up nicely. You've dated it, you've signed it, you've taken it to a notary when you did sign it. So it has those nice notary stamps on it, and then he stops paying the $1,000 in support. What can you do? Can you enforce this agreement? Well, let's assume
that you did want to try to enforce it. How would you enforce it? Well, you'd go to contract court, you'd go, you'd file a lawsuit that he violated a contract. But here in Illinois you can't contract the payment of support so that lawsuit's going to be tossed out. You could go file a divorce case and as part of a divorce case you allege if there's any agreements between the parties and you would probably allege that an alleged just means say it's an allegation only because a court hasn't decided it's true or not true, but something like this is probably going to be a not disputed as being false. So you allege that there is this agreement between you two for the thousand dollars is in support and then you file your divorce case, you serve him and you get a court date and probably at that court date you'll file a motion as well asking the court to enforce this agreement or to otherwise set child support and the court will look at that agreement and look at the incomes of the parties and most likely the court will either uphold the agreement and say, you guys agreed to this so we're going to stick with this temporarily.
Or the court will look at the incomes of the parties and say, here's what guideline support is. Here's what the law says. The child support should be based on your incomes and we'll set it at that amount. But as far as that agreement being, you know, a hundred percent Bulletproof or enforceable, when it comes to child support, it's just not, the court is going to look at the financial circumstances of the parties and most likely set it at guideline support because that's kind of what the law says is in the best interest of the children. So it doesn't really matter. It doesn't matter at all that it's notarized. A lot of people think that notaries on a document means that it's enforceable, but a notary signing a document only means one thing, that they are vouching for the signature. Being authentic and authentic. Signature doesn't make an agreement enforceable.
There's other legal check marks that have to be checked in order for a, an agreement to be enforceable. And when it comes to child support, it just doesn't work that way. It's just not enforceable. You have to deal with it through the divorce court and the divorce court can either adopt that agreement or adopt child support guidelines or deviate from both of those if the circumstances warrant it. I hope this has clarified some things for you, and if you have any comments, let me know in the comments below. Questions, concerns, happy to continue the conversation down there. Don't forget to subscribe so you see our daily videos come out and I'll talk to you soon.