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Can I get a simplified divorce in Illinois?

Since many Illinois divorces are contentious with an endless list of items and issues in dispute, it can be viewed as somewhat unusual if a couple simply decides to pursue the end of a marriage without a fight. While many divorces are laced with struggle, an amicable divorce is more common than many believe. This is why it is important to understand how to have a joint and simplified dissolution of marriage. With this procedure, the couple can end the marriage quickly provided they meet the necessary criteria.

This type of divorce is allowable if the following factors are in place: both parties are in agreement to divorce; the paperwork is filled out by the spouses together; both spouses attend court; one or both parties resided in Illinois for a minimum of 90 days prior to filing; the marriage did not go beyond eight years in duration; the couple does not have any children together nor did they adopt; there is not a current pregnancy; there is no interest in real property like land or a house; the couple does not have any interest in retirement benefits unless they are held exclusively in an individual account and the combined value does not go beyond $10,000.

Other rules include: neither spouse will get spousal support from the other; the total fair market value of property owned by the couple does not surpass $50,000; there has been a written agreement executed saying that all assets valued over $100 were allocated responsibly; the combined pre-tax gross income of the spouses is less than $60,000; the other spouse's pre-tax gross income was less than $30,000; the couple has disclosed all assets and liabilities for the duration of the marriage; and the spouses have disclosed the income tax returns for the time that they were married.

Divorce legal issues can be complex. While the simplified dissolution is meant to make the process easier, it is important to understand the rules regarding it. A lawyer who has experience in all manners of divorce can help with a simplified dissolution. Those who are seeking to conclude their marriage in this way should call an attorney as soon as possible.

Source: 19thcircuitcourt.state.il, "Guide For Family Law Cases -- III. Dissolution of Marriage, pages 11-12," accessed on Nov. 22, 2016

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