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reason, divorce, Illinois family law attorneyFiling for a dissolution of marriage, or divorce, may leave some people wondering if their petition will be granted. When you file the paperwork for divorce, you must state why you are filing the petition. If a judge decides the grounds, or reason, you stated on your paperwork and evidence is not sufficient, your petition may be denied and the process will have to start over again. Speaking with an experienced divorce lawyer before you file your petition for a dissolution of marriage can save you unnecessary steps during the process.

Illinois allows the petitioner to file for a "grounds" or "irreconcilable differences" divorce. A divorce on specific grounds is generally attributed to the fault of one partner, while one based on irreconcilable differences is commonly called a "no-fault divorce."

Irreconcilable differences divorces are becoming the most common type of marriage dissolution. The spouse filing the petition does not have to list one specific reason for the divorce. Instead, he or she must sufficiently prove that there has been a breakdown in the marriage and reconciliation is not possible. In Illinois, filing for an irreconcilable differences divorce requires the couple to live apart for at least two years. If both spouses agree the marriage should end, a waiver is available for both spouses to sign to have the time limit waived. Signing the waiver means neither spouse is going to contest the proceedings.

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Posted on in Divorce
ChristineRegardless of your reasons for getting a divorce, it is important to hire a divorce lawyer who can listen to your concerns and help you through the process. Asking  questions and getting accurate answers from a compassionate attorney is crucial. Consider options such as mediation to work through your divorce. You have the option of having an attorney present in mediation, and you and your spouse have more control over the outcome. In the state of Illinois, you have to have been a legal resident of the state for  at least 90 days before a final divorce judgment can be issued. One or both sides must legally prove that there is a reason for the divorce, whether it is a fault or no fault divorce. A commonly used reason for divorce is irreconcilable differences, which is considered "no-fault". In order to file a no-fault divorce, the following  must be fulfilled:
  • The marriage has broken down
  • The couple has been living separately for at least two years. 
  • The court has determined that efforts to reconcile have failed, future attempts will serve no purpose and are not in the best interest of the family.
Other grounds for divorce are not considered no fault. The following are valid, but may be difficult to prove:
  • Mental cruelty
  • Physical cruelty
  • Habitual drunkenness
  • Drug addiction
  • Impotency
  • Imprisonment
  • Adultery
Legislation regarding divorce in Illinois can be found here: Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act - ILCS750, Park IV. The legal lingo may be difficult accurately interpret without the help of a divorce attorney. If you have questions about divorce or need to start the proceedings, contact a Lombard divorce attorney who can assist you.

Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos

Every state has different requirements that a person must meet before a petition can be filed. There are a slew of things to consider as you begin the arduous process in addition to Illinois-specific requirements, including waiting periods and postnuptial agreements. First, though, it’s important to choose what kind of divorce you’ll be filing—fault or no-fault. After this has been determined, and agreed upon by both parties, the next important step is to hire a divorce lawyer who can help you with everything else.

Fault divorce in Illinois can be determined by a number of reasons, including, but not limited to:

  • adultery
  • impotence
  • two-years of drug addiction or habitual drunkenness
  • felony conviction
  • imprisonment
  • infection with an STD

A no-fault divorce in Illinois must follow a two-year trial separation period in which the spouses were living apart for at least two continuous years. This can only be waived if the couple has been living apart for six months and a written agreement signed by both parties accompanies the divorce petition.

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