New Lenox Divorce Lawyer

New Lenox Divorce Lawyer

Up until a few years ago, Illinois, like many other states, allowed couples to file for divorce based on one of a number of different fault-based grounds. However, in 2016, the state legislature did away with these distinctions; as a result of this, couples who decide to dissolve their marriages must now file for no-fault divorces. Although making this change has significantly simplified the divorce process in many ways, navigating these types of proceedings is still notoriously difficult, so if you and your spouse have decided to dissolve your marriage, you should consider speaking with an experienced New Lenox divorce lawyer who can help protect your legal rights and interests.

Fault-Based Grounds for Divorce

Prior to 2016, couples in Illinois who decided to dissolve their marriages had a number of fault-based grounds from which they could choose, including impotency, adultery, abandonment, a felony conviction, bigamy, drug addiction or habitual drunkenness, physical abuse, or mental cruelty. Most couples, however, chose to file for divorce based on irreconcilable differences, as this did not require proof that one of the spouses was at fault for the end of the marriage. For this reason, no-fault proceedings tended to go much more smoothly and were resolved more quickly than their fault based predecessors. Recognizing these advantages, the Illinois Legislature eliminated the state’s fault-based options. As a result, couples in the state who wish to dissolve their marriages only have the option of filing for divorce because of irreconcilable differences.

Irreconcilable Differences

Before courts will grant a divorce in Illinois, couples must prove that irreconcilable differences have caused the irretrievable breakdown of their marriage and that efforts at reconciliation have either failed or would be impracticable or not in the family’s best interests. Couples who are able to agree on this are not required to go through a waiting period before their divorce decree can be entered. Alternatively, if one of the parties contests the grounds for divorce, the other spouse can rebut those claims by providing evidence that the couple has lived separate and apart for at least six months preceding the judgment. Evidence of such separation creates an irrebuttable presumption that the irreconcilable differences requirement has been met.

It is still possible, albeit more difficult, to obtain a no-fault divorce when a couple lives together and one of the parties is contesting the dissolution. In either case, a couple can only begin the process of divorce by filing a petition with the court if at least one of the parties has lived in the state for the past 90 days.

Call Today to Schedule an Initial Consultation

If you and your spouse are thinking about filing for divorce, please call 708-949-6440 to speak with one of the dedicated New Lenox divorce lawyers at Forst Law Offices about your legal options. You can also reach a member of our legal team by completing and submitting one of our brief online contact forms. We are standing by and eager to start working on your case today.

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