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Kendall, County Family Law Divorce AttorneyFor many people, going through a divorce is a bittersweet experience. However, going through a divorce is also an experience that requires a good deal of level-headed decision-making, which does not always go hand-in-hand with times of stress. While there are many ways to get a divorce, one of the biggest decisions you will have to make is whether or not you hire a lawyer to assist you with your divorce process. Some people are attracted to the extremely low price tag of a “do-it-yourself” or “DIY” divorce, as the only fees you pay are filing fees and court costs. However, getting a divorce is a very complex process and the decisions you make can end up affecting nearly every part of your life.

Pertinent Reasons to Work With a Divorce Attorney

Technically, you are not required to have a lawyer when you file for divorce. It is completely legal for you to fill the forms out yourselves, file them, and appear before the judge in the final prove-up just the two of you. However, doing so could result in one of the biggest mistakes of your life. Hiring an attorney when you get a divorce is a smart move in protecting your rights and ensuring the process is done correctly. Here are a few other benefits to having the support of an attorney during your divorce:

  • They are intimately familiar with family law and can help you protect your rights during the divorce process.


DuPage County divorce attorney

In most cases, you might assume that there is really no moment to decide between an amicable divorce and a contested divorce when you and your spouse are ending your marriage. If you are amicable with one another, it will be uncontested; if you are argumentative with one another, it will be contested. However, it may not be that simple if you and your spouse choose to weigh your options and compromise to decide what is best. For instance, if you are following through with a contested divorce, the divorce process can be complicated, complex, and challenging, not to mention expensive. However, amicable divorces are not always perfect either since their uncontested nature might leave major issues unaddressed that could be troublesome later on down the road, whether it involves child custody, property division, or other issues. In that sense, you and your spouse must be very thoughtful and deliberative in your decisions regarding a divorce. Below are some tips for how to approach this important decision.

3 Things to Consider When Determining the Type of Divorce in Illinois

For many people, it will be obvious as to whether an uncontested or contested divorce is the proper pathway to dissolving the marriage, but other couples might find it advantageous to discuss the two options further with each other, reaching a compromise of sorts prior to their Illinois divorce. Here is why:


Batavia uncontested divorce attorney

It can feel like you have gotten over a giant hurdle once you have finally made the decision to tell your spouse that you want a divorce. Now that you have made that decision, you must begin to make even more difficult decisions throughout the process. One of the first decisions you will be required to make during your Illinois divorce is whether or not your divorce will be contested or uncontested. Both types of divorces have their place, but an uncontested divorce can offer benefits that a traditional litigated divorce cannot.

What Is an Uncontested Divorce?

In the simplest terms, an uncontested divorce is any divorce that takes place between two spouses who agree on all or most issues pertaining to their divorce. During a divorce, there are various issues that need to be discussed and settled, which can include issues such as dividing and allocating your marital debt and property, determining if spousal support is needed and if so, how much and for how long. If there are children, issues such as designating parenting time, allocating decision-making responsibilities, and calculating child support must all be addressed. 


Geneva collaborative divorce attorney

What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of divorce? You probably think of a couple who is frustrated, upset, or hostile toward each other, in and out of courtrooms, and fighting over every single little issue. While it is true that some partners can be very stubborn and combative, many spouses are not that adversarial with one another. In fact, the majority of divorces only require one courtroom visit, which is to have a judge finalize and sign your divorce decree. Depending on your relationship with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, you may be able to benefit from the collaborative divorce process.

What Is a Collaborative Divorce?

In a traditional litigated divorce, each spouse retains his or her own attorney who is present to advocate for his or her best interests. First, the lawyers attempt to conduct negotiations privately, but if there is too much disagreement between the spouses, then the proceedings are taken to court, where a judge determines the outcomes of the matters that need to be resolved, including the division of property and child-related issues such as parenting time.


North Aurora uncontested divorce attorney

Many people’s idea of what a divorce entails is entirely formed by the experiences of people around them and what they see in movies and television shows. When you think of a divorce, you might remember how your aunt and uncle went head to head in a divorce case that lasted for two years, or you might recall television shows such as Divorce Court and how argumentative the divorcing couples could be. In reality, many divorcing couples are not as contentious as you might expect. Some couples are able to put their differences aside and complete their divorce in a peaceful and relatively simple manner. In situations like these, you may be able to file for an uncontested divorce. However, an uncontested divorce may not be for everyone.

What Is an Uncontested Divorce?

In the simplest terms, an uncontested divorce occurs when both spouses can resolve the marital issues of their divorce without taking their case to court. Most divorces involve major issues such as:


Posted on in Divorce

Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, life after divorce,Marriage is not easy. It takes a lot of work, effort, and persistence to make a marriage work, but sometimes it does not matter how hard you try -- you are destined to divorce. According to the National Survey of Family Growth, more than 20 percent of first marriages end in divorce within the first five years and 48 percent of marriages end before they hit 20 years. Divorce is an emotionally stressful and trying process, but sometimes it is one of the best things you can do for you and your spouse. Instead of making life as difficult as possible for both you and your soon-to-be ex, you should try focusing on making your split as healthy and smooth as possible.

Cooperate and Communicate

When you begin the divorce process, you will probably feel a flood of emotions, like anger, grief, and depression. When emotions are running this high, it is easy for you to do and say things that can negatively affect the divorce process. Remember, your emotions are valid, but how you handle them is important. Make sure you maintain an open line of communication with your spouse and remember that cooperation is key.

divorceIn a divorce, things can get ugly and they can get ugly fast. Once you have made the decision to separate from your spouse, the last thing you want to do is spend months, even years, arguing with them over certain things, attending court hearings, and waiting for the courts to finalize everything. This is the case for many couples who cannot come to an agreement on things. When you make the decision to divorce, you want the divorce to go as quickly and as smoothly as possible. This is where a joint simplified dissolution of marriage may come in handy. What Is a Joint Simplified Dissolution of Marriage?

This type of divorce is an uncontested divorce, meaning there are not any points of disagreement or argument between the two parties who are getting divorced. Generally, for the divorce to be uncontested, both spouses have to agree on:

  • Division of the marital property;
  • Spousal support;
  • How marital debts will be paid off; and
  • Any other issue arising from the marriage.
A joint simplified dissolution is entered into willingly by both parties and essentially expedites your divorce, but there is a catch - not all couples can use the simplified version of divorce. Qualifications for a Joint Simplified Dissolution of Marriage

The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act states that the only couples who are eligible to use this process are couples who meet all of the following set of criteria:

  • Neither spouse is dependent on the other for support;
  • Both spouses waive their rights to support;
  • At least one spouse has been a resident of the state of Illinois for at least six months prior to the divorce petition;
  • Proof of irreconcilable differences has been met;
  • No children were born of the relationship, the couple did not adopt a child and the wife is not pregnant with the husband’s child;
  • The marriage did not last longer than eight years;
  • Neither spouse has property or retirement benefits, or the retirement benefits are held in separate accounts and are less than $10,000 in value;
  • The total value of all marital property is less than $50,000;
  • The combined gross annual income from all sources is less than $60,000 and neither spouse makes over $30,000 annually;
  • Both spouses have disclosed all of their assets, liabilities and tax returns during the marriage;
  • Both spouses have formed a written agreement dictating the division of assets, debts, and liabilities; and
  • Both parties have agreed upon who is responsible for any companion animals.
Contact a Skilled Kendall County Divorce Lawyer

Although not all couples are eligible for a joint simplified dissolution, some couples are. Joint simplified dissolutions are the easiest and quickest way to get an uncontested divorce finalized. If you think that you might qualify for a simplified dissolution, or if you are unsure if you qualify, you should contact an Aurora divorce attorney to discuss your situation. The Law Offices of Matthew M. Williams, P.C. can help you figure out the best way to file for your situation. To set up a consultation, call the office at 630-409-8184.


The Difference Between a No-Fault and an Uncontested Divorce, divorce, family law, uncontested divorce, child custody, no-fault, Aurora child supportTo many people, the thought of a divorce conjures up images of nasty courtroom battles, accusations of wrongdoing, and drawn out negotiations over the division of marital assets. While lingering acrimony might not be avoided completely, use of No Fault or Uncontested divorce options provide an opportunity to avoid some of the unpleasantness that often accompanies the end of a marriage.

To understand the benefits of each, it is important to know how the state defines each term.

  • An “uncontested divorce” results when both parties are in full agreement of all the terms related to the divorce including, but not limited to alimony, child support, child custody, visitation, and division of property.
  • A “no fault divorce” is a decree of divorce issued when neither party admits to marital misconduct. This is frequently referred to “irreconcilable differences.”

Basic Elements of No Fault and Uncontested Divorces


Posted on in Divorce

divorce, DuPage County divorce attorneySome divorces can take years to resolve, which can lead to many unfavorable consequences for both parties. However, many divorces can be resolved on a quicker timeline and with fewer attorney’s fees.

To streamline your divorce proceedings, consider the following tips:

1. Agree with your soon-to-be ex-spouse as much as possible.


Posted on in Uncontested Divorce

uncontested divorce, DuPage County family law attorneyDivorce does not have to be bitter and expensive. Many times a couple has the basic agreement worked out before the divorce is even filed. Under Illinois law, it is possible to fairly easily complete an uncontested divorce.

Advantages of Agreement

An uncontested divorce means that the two spouses have no remaining issues to put to rest. They may even file jointly for a divorce and ask the court to approve the agreement they have already worked out in negotiations.


Illinios divorce attorney, Illinois family law attorney, DuPage County divorce lawyer,The holidays can be stressful, which could be one reason January is oft-cited as “Divorce Month,” the month in which Americans are most likely to initiate divorce proceedings. According to Psychology Today, there are many reasons other than residual stress from the holidays that lead people to divorce in January: a fresh start for the new year or the fact that they were staying together for the kids during the holidays among them. If you and your soon to be ex-spouse were able to hold it together for familial reasons until January, you may want to consider a no-fault divorce. A no-fault divorce, in which both parties accept that the deterioration of the marriage was merely due to irreconcilable differences and that no party was more at fault than the other, can be a much easier process, both emotionally and financially.

If the spouses have lived apart for more than two years (this does not have to mean in separate residencies; the couple just needs to be able to prove that they were living more like roommates than spouses), Illinois state law provides for a no-fault divorce. Another ground for no-fault divorce is the agreement of both parties that they are simply unable to get along, and that efforts of reconciliation (such as couples counseling) have failed. Spouses may also have to prove that further efforts of reconciliation would not necessarily be good for the family.

No-fault divorce laws make divorce easier because the proceedings usually are not as cutthroat in court, because to win — or have assets split evenly — no party has to prove that the other is at fault. This alleviates the need for unnecessary finger-pointing, which in the worst-case scenario can sometimes amount to outright lies. All states have a no-fault divorce law as of 2014.


uncontested divorce, contested divorce, Illinois divorce lawyer, divorce settlementA contested divorce is a divorce case in which you and your spouse are unable to reach agreement terms. Your divorce will be contested if your spouse disagrees about property division, doesn’t want a divorce, or disagrees about child custody, child support, or alimony. If you and your spouse can’t reach an agreement on these major issues, you’ll need to go through the legal process for a contested divorce. If you and your spouse agree, however, you may be able to significantly reduce your costs and investment of time by opting for uncontested divorce.

In an uncontested divorce, you may be able to work with an Illinois divorce attorney who accepts a flat fee for handling your case. This gives you knowledge upfront about what to expect, whereas litigation fees and costs can spiral out of control quickly for a lengthy contested case. The flat fee for an uncontested divorce include paperwork drafting and a review. If you decide that an uncontested divorce is best for you, you will retain the majority of the decision-making power. The only role of judge in an uncontested case is to approve the paperwork detailing the terms of your agreement. Since you can frequently get these papers drafted and accepted quickly, you’ll be able to move on with your life sooner rather than later. There is no need to go through traditional litigation if you and your spouse are able to agree on the major issues in the divorce. Save time, money, and headaches by working with an Illinois divorce lawyer who specializes in uncontested divorce. There’s no need to drag out the time period for receiving your divorce decree. If you and your spouse have been able to reach an agreement on child custody, alimony, child support, and property division, you can benefit from hiring an Illinois uncontested divorce attorney today.

Many spouses will stay in a marriage even when it is clear that divorce is the best choice. However, the more one waits, the more difficult a divorce becomes. Moreover, an experienced local family law attorney may greatly simplify the divorce process.

Rigs Aurora divorce lawyerHere is an overview of how the process works. Once a spouse decides to get a divorce, they will usually contact a divorce attorney. A good attorney will schedule an in-person meeting to discuss the circumstances of the case and define the client’s goals. During this meeting, the attorney will collect relevant information like the duration of marriage, whether there are any children, marital assets or debts.

Once the attorney gathers these initial information, they will be able to explain the steps, cost and time involved with the divorce. A good attorney will take the time to explain these steps in detail so each client is able to make an informed decision.

The Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C.


1444 North Farnsworth Avenue, Suite 307, Aurora, IL 60505

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