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DuPage County divorce attorney asset division

If you are considering divorce, you may understandably be feeling a bit overwhelmed and confused. The idea of dealing with the court system can be daunting – especially if you have never stepped foot inside of a courtroom before. Your confusion and anxiety may be exacerbated by well-intentioned friends and family who give you divorce advice that is simply untrue or does not apply to Illinois divorce cases. Fortunately, you do not have to face divorce alone. An experienced divorce lawyer will be able to give you the legal guidance you need to manage this difficult time in your life and move on to a brighter future.

Myth: I Will Need to Prove That My Spouse Did Something Wrong to Be Granted a Divorce

When a married individual files a petition for divorce, called a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage in Illinois, they are essentially asking the judge to grant him or her a divorce. In the past, Illinois had both fault and no-fault grounds, or reasons, for divorce. Fault-based grounds were issues such as infidelity or mental cruelty. However, Illinois has since eliminated all fault-based grounds for divorce. Now, the only available ground for divorce is “irreconcilable differences.”

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DuPage County legal separation attorneyThere are many different factors that influence the sustainability of a marriage. For many married couples, knowing whether it is time to formally end a marriage through divorce is not easy. One option that many married couples utilize when they are not ready to divorce is legal separation. However, it is important to understand that living apart or separating from your spouse is not the same as obtaining a legal separation. Couples that are legally separated are still technically married, but they gain much greater protection under the law than couples that are simply living apart. Some reasons you may consider legal separation include:

There Is Still a Chance for Reconciliation But You Want to Separate Finances

Divorce is a very definitive action. There is no undoing a divorce. If you and your spouse have had major marital trouble, but you believe that there is still a chance for you to reconcile in the future, a legal separation may be right for you. If you obtain a legal separation, you will be able to gain many of the benefits of divorce without actually ending your marriage.

When spouses are simply living apart, the spouses’ finances are still legally intertwined. This means that a spouse may be responsible for the consequences of the other spouse’s financial decisions during the physical separation period. Spouses who are legally separated are subject to a court order called a separation agreement that formally separates the spouses’ finances. Furthermore, a spouse is not responsible for debts accumulated by the other spouse after the legal separation has gone into effect. 

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When you have made the decision to end your marriage, nothing can truly prepare you for the emotional and mental toll that divorce entails. The journey is mentally exhausting and can wreak havoc on the whole family. However, the moment you decide to call it quits, you take the first step in resolving your marital problems and working toward a better, healthier future. The road before you might look long and bleak initially, but as you begin to face the challenge before you, the pressure will lessen over time and a light at the end of the tunnel will appear.

Legal Separation and Divorce

Before some couples begin the divorce process, they consider legal separation, which allows them to live separately and make financial and lifestyle arrangements that protect their best interests during the time apart. This arrangement also gives both spouses time to pursue self-help, therapy, and space to reflect on whether or not divorce is the right solution. To file for legal separation, you must be living apart at the time and you may not marry anyone else during this period, as you are still married according to the law. If legal separation is not a step you wish to take, beginning the divorce process is the first course of action.

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Posted on in Divorce
What Is Legal Separation?

Illinois legal separation lawyers, divorce attorneysEnding a marriage can be a difficult and overwhelming decision. People may be thinking about divorce as an option, but may be unsure, have personal or financial concerns, or may not be ready to file for divorce. Those who are not ready to file for divorce, but who are seeking to take some steps towards separating from their spouse, may be interested in a legal separation.

Legal Separation or Divorce?

In a divorce, the marriage is legally over. Both parties are free to marry other people. In a legal separation, however, the parties are still married. In both cases, courts can make determinations about child custody and visitation, child support, and spousal maintenance. However, courts generally only divide property in divorce.

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