Consider this scenario: you and your spouse have been suffering through a rough time in your marriage for the last several years. Things have gotten bad enough that you even separated for about a year. During that period, you both decided that it would be better for you to just end the marriage and move on with your lives. Now—several months later—you have negotiated a fairly straightforward divorce agreement with surprisingly little contentiousness, and the judge has entered a divorce judgment. The day you receive your copy of the divorce decree, it hits you: you have made a terrible mistake. You call your ex-spouse, and the two of you decide to give your marriage another chance. Surely you have time to ask the court to vacate the judgment, right? The answer is probably not what you might think.
When a Divorce Judgment Can Be Vacated
A divorce judgment is, technically, a binding court ruling on a civil case between two opposing parties, regardless of how amicable the process may have been. As such, a divorce judgment can be vacated once it has been finalized, but only in certain situations, including fraud or misrepresentation of facts. For example, if new information was found that showed your spouse was lying or hiding information during the proceedings, the judgment could be vacated so a new, more appropriate judgment can be entered.
Changed Your Mind?
Your divorce, however, will not be overturned or vacated simply because you have had a change of heart. While you may be able to stop the process before it finalizes, a desire to reconcile is not a reasonable basis for vacating a judgment. Divorce is a legal proceeding which, once completed and finalized, can only be undone when there is a legal basis to do so. For this reason, along with the health of your family and relationships, divorce should always be the option of last resort.
We Can Help You Be Sure
At Bochte, Kuzniar & Navigato, P.C., we understand that the end of a marriage can be a very confusing and stressful time. The pressures of making such serious decisions can make it difficult to know what you truly want. We can help. Contact an experienced Kane County divorce attorney today to discuss your available options. Our knowledgeable team will work with you so that you fully understand the implications of your choices before it is too late to undo them. Call 630-377-7770 for a free consultation.