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Choosing Where to File Your Divorce

Posted on in Divorce

Lombard divorce attorneyAre you ready to file for divorce? Have you started putting together a list of your goals for the proceedings, including property you wish to keep and an ideal parenting plan for your children? If so, it may be time to take your completed petition for the dissolution of a marriage down to the county courthouse to begin the process. But, which county? And, does it really matter?

Residential Expectations

Under Illinois law—specifically the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act—proceedings for a divorce are expected to be held in the county in which one of the parties currently resides. You, as the petitioner, can choose to file in your county of residence or that of your spouse, but, if necessary, the court could transfer your case to another county.

Venue is not considered jurisdictional which means that no county’s authority to handle your divorce is greater than that of any other county. It also means that you cannot appeal a divorce judgment on the basis that it was heard in an inappropriate county.

Choosing an Alternate Location

Depending on your situation, you may feel that the county best-suited for your divorce is not one in which or your spouse currently live. When filing your petition for divorce, you choose any county you wish but you must include a motion with your petition that explains your reasons for choosing a different county.

It is important to keep in mind that throughout your divorce proceedings, you may need to visit the county courthouse several times. This means that you may want to choose a venue that is relatively convenient for both parties. For example, if you moved to St. Louis after you and your spouse separated while your spouse continued to live in DuPage County, choosing a divorce venue somewhere in between may be reasonable.  

Objecting to a Chosen Location

If your spouse does not agree with your choice of county, his or her objection must be filed immediately with his or her response to your divorce petition. This applies even if you chose the county of your residence but your spouse wanted the divorce to be handled in his or her home county. It will then be up to the court to decide whether to keep the case or to direct it to a new venue.

Choosing a venue is just one of the many considerations that you will need to make during the process of divorce, and an experienced Lombard divorce attorney can help. Contact the offices of A. Traub & Associates today to schedule a confidential consultation at any one of our three convenient locations, including in Lombard, Arlington Heights and Chicago South Loop.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs5.asp?ActID=2086&ChapterID=0


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