Divorce proceedings can be expensive, time-consuming, and emotionally draining. Fortunately, in Illinois there are certain procedures, including simplified divorce, that enable qualified residents to skip some of the biggest procedural hurdles. However, not every couple is eligible for a simplified dissolution, so if you are considering a divorce and have questions or concerns about whether you qualify, it is important to contact an experienced divorce attorney who can help put your mind at ease, while also explaining your legal options.
To file a petition for divorce, the parties must satisfy specific requirements, including that:
- They were legally married;
- One of the parties has lived in Illinois for at least three months; and
- The couple has no other pending divorce proceedings.
Additionally, the parties are required to establish that:
- Irreconcilable differences have caused the irretrievable breakdown of their marriage; and
- Efforts at reconciliation have failed and future attempts would not be in the best interests of the couple and their family.
Couples with children must also come to an agreement regarding child custody, child support, and the division of parental responsibilities before a divorce can be finalized.
Certain couples may be able to file a joint petition for a simplified dissolution if they satisfy additional conditions, including the following:
- Neither spouse is financially dependent on the other;
- The parties are willing to waive their rights to support;
- The parties do not have biological or adopted children together;
- The couple has not been married for more than eight years;
- Neither party owns real property;
- Neither party has an interest in retirement benefits unless those benefits are held in individual accounts and have a combined value of no more than $10,000;
- The couple’s marital property is worth less than $50,000;
- The combined gross annual income of the parties is less than $60,000;
- Neither spouse has a gross yearly income of more than $30,000;
- Both parties have disclosed their assets, liabilities, and tax returns;
- The couple has executed a written agreement dividing assets valued at more than $100; and
- The couple has reached an agreement regarding who will be responsible for any marital debts.
Couples who satisfy these requirements can submit a joint petition for a simplified dissolution to the Clerk of the local Circuit Court. They will also need to submit a copy of their property division agreement as well as an affidavit stating that all property has been divided in accordance with the agreement. Once the parties have paid the court fees and submitted all necessary documentation, the court can order a formal dissolution of their marriage.
Contact an Experienced Palatine Divorce Attorney Today
Simplified dissolutions can save couples a significant amount of time and money, so if you live in Palatine, Rolling Meadows, Inverness, Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, or Barrington and are considering a divorce, please contact The Law Offices of Jenet G. Pequeno, LLC and a member of our dedicated legal team will help you set up an initial consultation with a knowledgeable divorce attorney.