With nearly a million residents, DuPage is Illinois’ second-most populous county. With a higher population, DuPage also has the second-highest divorce rate in the state. If you need a divorce lawyer in DuPage County, see how Masters Law Group can help.
Located just west of Chicago, DuPage County provides a supportive ecosystem for businesses, a launchpad for innovators, a strategic location for critical logistics operations, and a healthy home for families. But living in a picturesque suburban town doesn’t equal happy families for all. As with anywhere in the world, troubled marriages and divorce persist.
What factors lead to divorce?
In Illinois and around the country, married couples seek divorce for many reasons. This study found that the following factors may increase a couple’s risk of divorce.
- A lack of communication
- Conflict and arguing
- Marrying too young
- Financial issues
- Substance abuse
- Domestic violence
- Health issues
- Lack of family support
- Religious differences
- Lack of premarital education
The state of Illinois is considered a no-fault divorce state. The only grounds required to seek a divorce are irreconcilable differences, meaning that divorcing spouses do not need to prove fault to be granted a divorce in Illinois.
NAVIGATING DIVORCE IN DuPage
One of the most important decisions you’ll make during the divorce process is choosing the right lawyer.
When seeking a divorce lawyer in DuPage County, reliability is essential. It is vital to evaluate how effectively they communicate with you to establish a positive relationship. A strong rapport is crucial because divorce cases can take several months to settle. While the DuPage-based lawyer’s goal should not be excelling in personability and charm, (it should be excelling in family law, especially divorce law), it is important that you trust and respect their professional advice and want to work with them.
Throughout the process, you may have multiple questions, concerns, or disputes, and you require someone who can ease your worries. Voted Best Lawyers 2023 and Best Law Firms 2023, Masters Law Group, we begin by understanding your goals for the divorce and how you wish to feel once the process is complete. We discuss your objectives in detail to provide exceptional legal representation. Additionally, we offer complimentary consultations to help you evaluate if we are the right fit for your needs.
Aside from contacting your Illinois-based family law attorney, as soon as one or both parties decide that divorce is absolutely the only answer, the first step is filing the paperwork with your local court clerk. The forms you complete may vary from county to county, so it is important that you do some research based on DuPage County divorces. Wherever you live, however, you will need to file what is called a “petition for dissolution of marriage.” The forms are a bit different if you have children. For example, you will need to file a joint parenting agreement, uniform order of support, and visitation forms if you have children. You can also find other required forms on the Illinois court website.
Although the law specifically prohibits judges from analyzing fault when dividing property in a divorce, judges may evaluate whether or not one spouse dissipated marital assets during the marriage.
DuPage CONTESTED DIVORCES
A contested divorce happens when both spouses want a divorce but can’t agree on some of the terms of the divorce, like custody and spousal support. It can also occur if the spouse does not respond to the divorce petition.
In contested divorces, the judge may order you to go through additional steps like divorce mediation in DuPage. The mediation can result in an agreed settlement between the parties.
If mediation doesn’t work, your case will go to trial, and the judge will make the final determination on specific issues you and your spouse couldn’t agree on.
ALTERNATIVE PROCEDURES in DuPage County
If you and your spouse don’t have any children, have little money, and agree on everything, Illinois courts may allow you to have what is called a joint and simplified divorce.
You and your spouse can file a Joint Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage if:
- no spousal support (alimony) will be paid
- no-fault grounds are used
- there are no children and the wife is not pregnant
- you have not been married more than 8 years
- neither of you have any real property
- the total equity in your marital property is less than $10,000
- the combined annual income of you and your spouse is less than $35,000
- neither of you earn more than $20,000 annually
- you both disclosed your assets and tax returns for the years you were married, and
- you and your spouse have a written agreement dividing all of your property in excess of $100 in value, and allocating who will be responsible for each debt owed.
If you don’t meet the requirements for the Simplified procedure, but you and your spouse are in agreement on all matters, you may still file an uncontested divorce using the standard procedure.
DuPage LEGAL SEPARATION
DuPage County (and across Illinois) is one of the areas that recognize legal separation. Legal separation does not permanently end the marriage. However, a judge must approve the separation agreement, which defines the spouses’ legal rights and obligations.
For individuals with religious concerns or insurance issues who may be discouraged from seeking a formal divorce, a legal separation could be the preferred course of action. With a legal separation, many of the same issues determined in a divorce can be adjudicated, but without the finality of a legal divorce being granted.
This is a good option if you don’t want a divorce but want to live separately and want legal clarification on matters concerning child custody, child support, child custody, and property division.
DuPage CIVIL UNION DIVORCE
Civil unions allow two adults, of either the same or opposite sex, to enter into a legally recognized relationship. Several unique issues can arise during the process of establishing or dissolving a civil union, so it is vital to have a knowledgeable DuPage Divorce lawyer to guide you through every step.
Dissolving a civil union is nearly the same as dissolving a marriage. Any couple who wishes to dissolve a civil union will be able to do so in the State of Illinois. To receive a certified copy of a Dissolution of Civil Union records, an interested couple will need to go to the county circuit court clerk where the civil union was granted.
GETTING THE HELP YOU NEED WITH MASTERS LAW GROUP
Even a no-fault divorce is a complicated legal process, particularly when children or high assets are involved.
Whether you are facing a contested divorce, uncontested divorce, or a civil union divorce, the experienced DuPage attorneys at Masters Law Group are ready to skillfully advocate for your position and provide your voice when you need it most.
If you are seeking answers to questions regarding divorce, separation, child support and other matters in DuPage County, contact Chicagoland’s premier family law group here today to schedule a consultation.