Attorneys Help Chicago-Area Residents Determine Grounds for Divorce

Chicago Divorce Attorneys

No-fault divorce is also possible

Anyone who files for divorce must indicate grounds. Though grounds do not play as big a role as they used to, they may still factor into certain aspects of your divorce. The Law Offices of Michael P. Doman, Ltd. helps you decide which grounds you wish to file under or, if you are being served notice, whether you might want to object or counter file on different grounds.

Grounds you can choose from

Filing for divorce is not possible unless one of the parties has resided in the state for at least 90 days. When you file, whether your divorce is contested or not, you must indicate at least one of the following possible grounds for divorce:

  • Impotence
  • Bigamy (the other spouse had a wife or husband living at the time of the marriage)
  • Adultery
  • Abandonment for a period of at least one year
  • Alcohol abuse or drug addiction for two years
  • An attempt to take the other spouse’s life
  • Extreme and repeated physical or mental cruelty
  • Felony conviction
  • Transmission of a sexually transmitted disease
  • Irreconcilable differences

No-fault divorce

Illinois offers qualified no-fault divorce. To qualify, the filer must cite irreconcilable differences as the grounds for the divorce, attest you both have tried to solve your problems, and indicate you’ve been living separate and apart for at least two years or, if you both agree to the divorce, that you’ve been living separate and apart for at least six months.

“Separate and apart” does not mean you have to live in separate locations. You can remain under the same roof, as long as you don’t date, share bank accounts or perform household chores for one another.

The value of citing other grounds for your divorce

In some states, the ground of adultery can impact spousal support. Not in Illinois. In fact, Illinois law directs the judicial system to arrive at alimony and distribution of property on a “fair and equitable” basis and to not consider the grounds filed.

However, grounds may factor into an Illinois judge’s allocation of parental responsibilities decision and, by extension, the child support order. For instance, just as a record of domestic violence or abuse may excuse the parties from the state’s mandatory “mediation-before-divorce” rule, that same record — in any of its manifestations, including neglect through alcohol or drug abuse — may encourage a judge to award allocation of parental responsibilities to the non-abusive spouse.

Another reason to file for grounds other than irreconcilable differences might be to expedite your contested divorce. Filing under other grounds carries only the 90-day residency requirement; there is no two-year (or six-month) separate and apart requirement.

Retain a divorce law firm that knows the law

The Law Offices of Michael P. Doman, Ltd. brings 25 years’ experience and up-to-the-minute legal knowledge that can see you through divorce’s more complex twists and turns. Call us at 847.897.5288 or contact us online to arrange a consultation.