Although Illinois has taken steps in recent years to simplify the divorce process, legally ending a marriage still requires the navigation of a number of complex rules and procedures. To ensure that your own divorce goes as smoothly as possible, please call one of our experienced Channahon divorce attorneys today for advice.
Filing for divorce can be a complicated process and requires a number of steps, including:
The divorce petition itself will require that the petitioner provide detailed information about the parties’ ages, home addresses, employment, residency, and date and place of marriage.
Once these forms have been filed with the court, the petitioner will need to ensure that a copy of the petition is sent to his or her spouse with a summons telling him or her to come to court. Petitioners who fail to take this step could have their petition dismissed entirely, so it is important to abide by all court rules and procedures regarding service of process. At this point, the court will schedule a hearing with a family law judge.
To prepare for hearings, divorcing parties should be sure to bring copies of all documents filed with the circuit court, any witnesses who will testify on the parties’ behalf, any documentary evidence for the judge, and a photo ID. If the parties have come up with an out-of-court agreement regarding property division, alimony, and parenting time, they will be given the opportunity to give a copy of that agreement to the judge for review and approval. If, on the other hand, the parties do not agree on one more of these issues, they can expect to attend a series of hearings before a judge issues a ruling on the undecided legal matters.
Once a judge issues a divorce decree, a couple’s marriage will officially be terminated. Other issues, like parenting time and property division, will also be included in the order and are considered legally binding, so those who fail to abide by their terms face serious consequences, including being held in contempt of court. It is, however, possible to modify a custody arrangement or alimony award, so if you have questions about changing a prior court order, you should speak with an attorney about the types of circumstances in which a judge will grant such a request.
If you have decided to file for divorce, please call one of the experienced Channahon divorce attorneys at Demetrios N. Dalmares & Associates, Ltd. to learn more about how we can help you navigate the process.