For many years, most people saw marriage dissolution as a last resort. But divorce’s moral acceptability rate recently hit an all-time high. In other words, many people now see marriage dissolution as a legitimate way to end a marriage which, for whatever reason, has become unfulfilling. Although public attitudes about divorce have changed, the procedure remains very much the same.
To successfully navigate through this complicated procedure, you need a compassionate Palatine divorce attorney from Andrea Heckman Law. Before we dive into the process, we have a long conversation with every client, so we determine the client’s needs and goals. Then, we tailor an approach which fits those objectives. Then, we see things through to the end. All the while, we proactively communicate with you, so you are never in the dark.
In 2016, Illinois became one of the first pure no-fault divorce states in the country. Evidence-based grounds for divorce, like adultery and abandonment, are gone, at least for the most part. This change goes hand-in-hand with the Prairie State’s co-parenting law, which is discussed below. No-fault divorce shifts focus away from the spouses and places it on the children, as well as the other legal issues in a divorce case.
On a related note, the post-filing waiting period is another big change. Prior to 2016, some couples had to wait up to two years for their divorces to become final. Now, the waiting period is only six months. Since the process is rather complicated, most divorces take longer than six months to wrap up, so this restriction does not come up very often.
About two weeks after a spouse files legal paperwork, a judge usually holds a brief hearing to set some ground rules regarding parenting time and financial support. Assertive representation from a Palatine divorce attorney is often critical at this hearing. If a judge makes unfavorable orders, even though they are technically only temporary, these orders are difficult to reverse.
Illinois’ co-parenting law presumes that children benefit from spending meaningful, frequent, and consistent time with each parent. The traditional every other weekend and every other holiday division, which usually results in about a 70-30 time split, might not always be appropriate, given this new law.
Block scheduling is a popular parenting time alternative. The children usually spend two weeks with Parent A, two weeks with Parent B, and then the pattern repeats. Other than some alterations around major holidays and other dates, this cycle continues all year.
Financial orders during a temporary hearing usually include alimony and spousal support. Typically, mathematical formulas determine the amount and duration of payments. Property division, which is much more complicated, comes later.
Property, including both debts and assets, must be divided in such a way that the divorce is not an unfair financial burden on either party. That is a subjective standard that largely depends on a number of factors, such as the standard of living during the marriage and each party’s contributions to the marriage, whether those contributions were economic or noneconomic.
Most marriage dissolution matters in Illinois settle out of court. These resolutions are usually good for both sides. They end the case early and thereby reduce legal fees. Additionally, since such settlements give the parties more control over the outcome, voluntary compliance increases, eliminating the need for costly enforcement motions.
Divorces are never “final.” They simply become dormant for a few years, until a financial or emotional dispute arises. The judge will modify the terms of the divorce if circumstances have materially and substantially changed.
Divorce laws are different, but the procedure is largely unchanged. For a free consultation with an experienced divorce lawyer in Palatine, contact Andrea Heckman Law, Ltd. Convenient payment plans are available.
I could not ask for a better attorney to represent me during my case which is Andrea Heckman. Anytime I had any questions, I got a response in a timely manner. Andrea walked me through a very difficult time which was a divorce/child custody case. Andrea is very knowledgeable and motivating. The staff has been nothing but welcoming and professional. If I have to go to court for anything, I will definitely be giving this firm a call again.
Please contact our law office in Rolling Meadows for legal assistance with divorce, child custody, or visitation issues. We serve clients in the Chicago metropolitan area who need the help of an experienced and dedicated family law attorney.