Is your spouse filing for divorce?
You will have to consider many different factors when a marriage is being dissolved. In Illinois, divorce proceedings begin with a Summons and a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage which is served on the Respondent. If your spouse filed first, that makes your spouse the Petitioner and you the Respondent.
Questions you will need to consider…
How much can you agree on outside the courtroom?
Lawyers charge for all the time they spend on a case–time in court can add up very quickly. A judge will have to approve any agreements you reach outside of court, but he will be glad to not have to listen to the arguments about the details. Lawyers tend to make things adversarial–us against them. Consider using Alternative Dispute Resolution to settle as much as possible peacefully.
Mr. Nordgren knows that adversarial proceedings in a divorce can cause bitterness and resentment for years.
Particularly if you have children, step back and consider what will be best for them. Maybe the other parent will have more hours with the children than you get–is that really a big problem?
Also, if you and your ex-spouse can learn to work things out, modifications to the initial arrangements won’t require as much lawyer expense.
How do we split the care of our children?
There are several decisions that need to be made. See our discussions of
- Parenting Responsibility (Child Custody)
- Parenting time (Child Visitation)
- Child (Financial) Support
to start considering some of the issues involved.
If you have general agreement on how to handle the parenting, then the answers to these questions may be fairly obvious. Remember that there are now two households with expenses instead of one so the family’s standard of living may have to change.
Who gets the house?
How will our assets be divided?
See our discussion of Divorce Property Division.
What if my spouse doesn’t want to get a job?
See our discussion of Spousal Maintenance (Alimony).
During what many psychologists have called the most stressful time in a person’s life, you will want our attorneys to actively listen and relay your wishes to the Court. This is what we do best.
Call (312) 558-9100 to schedule a free phone consultation.