Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide


Illinois No Fault Divorce


According to Illinois no-fault divorce laws, 750 ILCS 5/401 (a), one can get a divorce on no-fault grounds, if one states in the complaint to the court that the marriage has “irretrievably broken down” owing to “irreconcilable differences” or “incompatibility in temperament”. The judges may find that any attempt to patch up the marriage would not be in the best interests of the parties and thus, they may be awarded divorce on no-fault grounds. When only one spouse is filing for divorce, then the separation period should be two years to get the divorce. According to no-fault divorce laws in Illinois, no spouse need to prove that the other spouse had indulged in any kind of “wrong doing” such as adultery or cruelty or desertion etc . These factors can be considered as “fault grounds” of divorce.

Residential requirements in IL no-fault divorce

According to IL divorce laws, at least one spouse must be a resident of the state for at least 90 days before filing for divorce. One can file the divorce from the county one lives in the state of Illinois.

Trial in IL no fault divorce

Once the spouses file no-fault divorce, it is advisable to settle matters related to child custody, spousal support or property division etc outside the court. It is because a “contested divorce” may be more costly and time consuming. It is better to opt for custody mediation or settle other matters and offer an “uncontested divorce”.

Property division in IL no fault divorce

Illinois is an equitable property state, meaning that the marital property is divided equitably among the spouses. The property that a spouse had acquired before the marriage would not be divided among them.

Child custody in IL no fault divorce

As has been mentioned earlier, most of the no-fault divorce cases have the spouses settling even the matter of child custody and not contesting it in the court. Such uncontested no-fault divorce cases are settled faster than the contested ones which take longer in the courts. As a general policy, courts prefer awarding the child custody to the parent who can meet the best interests of the child. All precautions are taken to see that the child is well taken care of after the divorce.

Choosing between “fault grounds” and no-fault” grounds

Divorce can be granted on “fault” basis or “no-fault” basis. A spouse can choose “no-fault” grounds for divorce even if there was substantial “wrongdoing” on part of the other spouse. This could be to avoid the messy battle in the court of “blame-game”. Also, many people wish to avoid their children get embroiled in the court battles. But some people prefer fault grounds for filing divorce because they may have an edge on matters concerning child custody (if the presence of the other spouse affects the welfare of the child) or if one hopes to get a better share of property division owing to the “wrong doing” of the other spouse.

Thus, it is advisable to seek an attorney for divorce related matters. Do-it-yourself divorces must be preferred if the grounds are no-fault and uncontested. Seeking an attorney in contested divorce cases is the best solution to know about all the details concerning divorce laws.


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