Frequently Asked Questions | Divorce in Lake County, IL | Attorney

What is a Divorce in Waukegan and Lake County Illinois?

It is a legal end to a marriage. Each party is restored to the status of single person. The process is begun by the first party to file a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. He or she will be known as the Petitioner. The other party, who may or may not file a Response paper, is known as the Respondent. Without the spouses creating agreements to resolve the issues arising from their divorce, the Lake County Illinois court will decide them.

What are Grounds for Divorce in Lake County?

Illinois (Lake County) is a no fault divorce state. You can have a divorce in Lake County, IL simply by swearing that irreconcilable differences have arisen in the marriage that have caused its irreparable breakdown. Other grounds for ending a marriage exist, but require proof. Your spouse cannot stop you from obtaining a divorce in Lake County, Illinois.

Where do I File for a Divorce in Lake County, IL?

Generally, the State of Illinois has jurisdiction over the marriage when one of the parties is a resident of the State, plus power over the property of the marriage after either party has at least six months residency immediately before the filing of a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, and at least three months as a resident of Lake County, IL in which the Petition is filed.

How Long Does it Take Before I can be Divorced in Lake County, Illinois?

Six months and a day must pass from the date that the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage in Lake County, IL is served on the Respondent before you can become restored to single status. Because so many cases take longer than 6 months to complete, the Lake County Illinois court can restore single status and later decide other issues.

Separation | Divorce Lawyer in Lake County, Illinois

The difference between divorce in Lake County, IL and legal separatio in Lake County is that marital status is not terminated. At the end of the case the parties remain married. But, just as with a divorce in Lake County, the issues of custody, visitation, support, asset and debt division, and so on are resolved in the final judgment. While the Petitioner party may file to seek a legal separation, the Respondent party may elect either a legal separation or a divorce. A request for a divorce supercedes one for separation. Legal separations are requested by a party who may be unsure that the marriage is permanently broken, yet desires to formalize the division of his or her assets and debts, and arrange custody, visitation and child support issues. Legal separations may be filed while waiting to meet residency requirement times for a divorce in Lake County. At times, religious reasons may apply. Or, a separation is requested to maintain medical insurance coverage for a spouse who could not otherwise afford or obtain it, or for a spouse who is otherwise uninsurable because of a pre- existing medical condition.

Annulment | Divorce Attorney in Lake County, Illinois

An annulment is sought where the petitioning party believes the marriage was entered into because of fraud relating to the purpose of a marriage, lack of ability to consent, failure to consummate, and such grounds. The result of a decree of annulment is that the parties are immediately returned to the status of unmarried persons, the marriage is nullified, and the marriage is treated as if it had never occurred. Legal cause and proof are required before the Lake County Illinois court, even if the other spouse does not respond. Complex legal considerations need to be considered before filing an annulment. As a Lake County Illinois Divorce Attorney at The Law Offices of Jason R. Mercure, we believe it is wise to request a divorce in the alternative, in case the annulment request is denied.

What is a Parenting Plan in a Lake County, IL Divorce Case?

One part is "physical custody", which means where the child lives and how the child spends his or her time. Think about activities, overnights, and day-to-day parental care opportunities. “Joint physical custody” means each parent has significant periods of time with the child so as to assure a child of frequent and continuing contact with both parents. The Law Offices of Jason R. Mercure, Lake County Illinois Divorce Attorney, knows what questions to ask and how to get a parenting plan that works for you and your children. Call us today if parenting is an issue. "Legal custody", means the right to make decisions promoting the health, education and welfare of your children. Be clear and specific about which decisions each parent can make on their own and which decisions must be made together.

Contact The Law Offices of Jason R. Mercure, Lake County Illinois Divorce Attorneys today if legal custody issues are in your case. Joint Legal and Physical Custody Considerations:

Generally: Joint custody in Lake County, IL is most successful when parents are consistent in dealing with their children, cooperate with and support the discipline (and other efforts) of the other parent, communicate about what is in the best interests of their children, are not in conflict around the children, share in parenting tasks, and the children’s possessions.

Specifically: The age, maturity, and temperament of each child, and his or her special needs; the parents’ work schedule and flexibility; the availability and affordability of child care, transportation distances, and how well the parents communicate and cooperate are typical factors that help create a parenting plan. Parents with a low level of conflict will usually need less detail in their agreement while specific plans work best for parents in higher conflict.

Parenting Plan Considerations when dealing with Divorce in Lake County?

The age, maturity, and temperament of each child, and his or her special needs; the parents’ work schedule and flexibility; the availability and affordability of child care, transportation distances, and how well the parents communicate and cooperate are typical factors that help create a parenting plan. Parents with a low level of conflict will usually need less detail in their agreement while specific plans work best for parents in higher conflict.

On What Does the Court Decide the Amount of Child Support?

If parents cannot agree on how much money is fair and reasonable to take care of their children, the court will generally order one parent to pay the other parent a sum of money every month to help pay for the children’s living expenses. The judge must decide the child support amount based on a guideline calculation. California has established a formula to calculate guideline child support. Only in very limited circumstances can the judge order something other than the guideline amount. Basic child support does not include the cost of child care or uninsured medical expenses. These additional costs will be allocate by the Court, and ordered in addition to guideline support. The guideline calculation depends on a number of facts and data. When you retain The Law Offices of Jason R. Mercure, Lake County Illinois Divorce Attorneys, we get that information and calculate child support for payment by court order, if not by agreement. Income and time sharing are key data relied on.

How is Spousal Support Calculated in Lake County Illinois?

In considering the amount and duration of long term spousal support, the court must consider the following circumstances:

  1. The standard of living enjoyed by the parties during their marriage
  2. The income or earning capacity of each party
  3. The skills, job training or education needed so the supported spouse can earn income
  4. The extent to which the supported party contributed to the education, training, or the career of the paying party
  5. The obligations and assets of each party after their division
  6. The length of the marriage; Whether the supported party can work without interfering with the interests of children in that spouse’s custody
  7. The age and health of the parties
  8. Documented history of domestic violence or criminal conviction of an abusive spouse
  9. The immediate tax consequences to each party
  10. The balance of the hardships to each party
  11. That the supported spouse be self supporting within a reasonable period of time. (For marriages of less than ten years, this is generally one half the length of the marriage.)
  12. Any other factors the court determines are just and reasonable. In determining long term support, the court is not permitted to use a computer program temporary formula. The judge must decide after consideration of all of the above that apply.

What Property Is Divided In Divorce? Waukegan and Lake County Divorce Attorneys

Each spouse equally owns the community property assets and debts. Unless the parties agree differently, a court will divide these assets and debts equally between them. It takes creative and experienced counsel to foresee tax consequences and other reasons not to merely recommend slicing the community in two.

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