For many people, once the decision has been made to end their marriage, they want it done as quickly as possible, Unfortunately, the process of divorce can often be a long, drawn-out affair, depending on how well—or not so well—both spouses can come to agreements on important issues such as child custody or property and asset division.
If both spouses agree to the divorce, and they both agree on how all the issues should be settled, then this is considered an uncontested divorce and will move quickly through the Illinois family court system. However, if spouses cannot come to an agreement on one or several of the issues which need to be decided, then this is considered a contested divorce. Depending on the level of disagreement—and acrimony—a contested divorce can take more than 18 months to go through.
Issues which spouses commonly disagree on include the following:
- Getting a divorce;
- Which household should be the children’s permanent residence;
- The amount of child support which should be paid;
- How marital assets should be divided;
- How marital debt should be divided; and
- The amount, if any, spousal support should be paid.
There are other ways spouses can cause a delay in how quickly a divorce will proceed through the legal system. If both spouses file divorce petitions separately, this can cause a delay in the countdown of any waiting period which may be required. Another cause for delay is when one party submits documents which are not complete or incorrectly filled out. If the court receives incomplete documents, instead of scheduling a hearing, they will likely return the documents and request they be filled out properly, which also delays the divorce moving forward.
Sometimes, when a spouse does not want the divorce, he or she will refuse to attend any scheduled hearings. Although this tactic will not work and the court will eventually grant the divorce, these types of actions often cause the divorce process to drag on.
One of the most common reasons for delays today is that people decide to represent themselves and forgo hiring a divorce attorney. Sometimes, the reason they do this is to save money. Still, many people also make that decision because they assume that because of all the readily available information and forms online, the process is easy. Unfortunately, filling out the forms may be easy, but the Illinois family law statutes and the rules of the courts are not so easy.
If you are considering a divorce, contact a skilled DuPage County divorce attorney to discuss your options and how an divorce lawyer can assist in providing the legal knowledge and experience to help move your divorce through the courts and get you a settlement to which you are entitled. Call Roscich & Martel Law Firm, LLC at (630) 793-6337 to schedule your confidential consultation today.