Top Mistakes to Avoid When Filing for Divorce in Illinois

IL divorce lawyerEnding a marriage is never easy. On top of the emotional turmoil, there can also be complex legal processes to navigate, especially if you are dealing with alimony and spousal support. Making mistakes during this process can lead to financial loss, damaged relationships, and unnecessary stress. Knowing the common divorce mistakes ahead of time can help, along with the guidance of an Illinois attorney.

Failing to Meet Illinois Residency Requirements

To file for divorce in Illinois, you or your spouse must have lived in the state for at least 90 days. This is a firm requirement under Illinois law. If you file before meeting the 90-day minimum, your case could get thrown out resulting in wasted time and money. Make absolutely certain you or your spouse have physically resided in IL for 90 days before taking legal action.

Not Knowing Where to File the Petition

You must file the petition for dissolution of marriage in the correct county in Illinois. This is determined by where you or your spouse have lived for the past 90 days. Filing in the wrong county can delay proceedings. Consult with an attorney to ensure you file in the proper jurisdiction.

Rushing to Serve Divorce Papers

While it is important to act promptly, you do not want to serve divorce papers prematurely. If you serve before all financial documentation is in order, important issues related to property division and spousal support may get overlooked. Take time upfront to gather all relevant paperwork and consult with professionals to determine fair terms for the dissolution.

Assuming You Don’t Need a Lawyer

It is tempting to try going through a divorce without legal representation to save money. However, DIY (do it yourself) divorce can backfire badly if you do not fully understand Illinois marital property laws and how issues like asset division and child custody are determined. Working with an experienced divorce lawyer protects your rights.

Not Making Full Financial Disclosures

Failing to fully disclose assets and debts will undermine negotiations and can lead to legal penalties. Be upfront from the outset about all marital property and financial obligations. Attempting to hide assets almost always causes major problems down the road.

Fighting Over Every Little Thing

Engaging in bitter disputes over trivial items during divorce proceedings will only drive up legal fees and fray emotions further. Pick your battles wisely. Listen to your lawyer’s advice about which issues are worth pursuing and which may be better to compromise on.

Contact an Illinois Family Law Attorney

Filing for divorce can be complicated, but avoiding these common mistakes will put you on the right path. For personalized guidance tailored to your unique situation, consult with a Hinsdale, IL divorce lawyer. Call Law Office of Martoccio & Martoccio at 630-920-8855 for a free consultation.

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