Getting a divorce is probably the most difficult decision one can make
, and it becomes even more draining when it involves recurring visits with lawyers and court appearances. Ending a marriage is never easy and once you reach that conclusion, be it mutual or not, things only get worse from there. Apart from being emotionally exhausting, getting a divorce can be a lengthy process causing great financial strain on your bank account too.
Most people seeking a divorce want to get the process over with as soon as possible. But unfortunately, getting stuck in a loop of legal proceedings can make the process exhaustingly long. To counter this situation, the state of Illinois recognizes online divorce services to provide you with a quick, affordable, and easy solution. This DIY style of divorce is a convenient and accessible solution for those seeking to end their marriage with minimum expense and as quickly as possible.
Why Should I Opt for Divorce Over the Internet?
Online divorce is a service curated in a way that it helps you proceed with your divorce without an attorney. This saves a huge amount in billable hours, as the online divorce company provides all the guidance needed on their online platform. However, this course of action is best applied with less complex cases, such as when there are no children, no family business, and no valuable property. The more complex the case, the harder it is to reach an amicable agreement on the terms of the separation. And that is the key to an online divorce - the case has to be uncontested.
Child support or custody battles as well as property disputes can quickly derail any opportunity for an online divorce. In such situations, each party would require legal representation to accompany them through the divorce process. When it comes to disputed divorces, many people would rather live in an unhappy marriage just to avoid the hassle that comes with the court proceedings and lawyer visits.
So it is worth the effort it takes to discuss all issues of your divorce with your spouse and maturely and amicably reach a compromise on everything. If you can reach an agreement on the division of property, assets, and debts, as well as child custody and maintenance, you can conduct your divorce online, more quickly and affordably, free of lawyers and court hearings.
However, an online divorce comes with a long list of qualifications and requirements which cannot be met in every single case. To avoid unforeseen complications, let’s go over the qualifications to be eligible to do an online divorce in Illinois.
How Do I Qualify for A Divorce Over the Internet?
The state of Illinois has provided an easy ‘no lawyer’ solution for those seeking an uncontested divorce as long as both parties have agreed upon all contentious issues, such as alimony, debts, property division, and child support
. In case of any complications or disagreements, the divorce will have to go to trial, thus becoming a contested divorce.
Besides reaching an agreement on the terms of the divorce, the couple will also have to meet the residency requirements of the state and agree to the grounds of the divorce.
To meet the residency requirements in the state of Illinois, the spouse that is filing must have lived in the state for at least 90 days. The easiest way to prove residency is using a valid Illinois driver’s license, ID card, or voter’s registration card. If this is not the case, it may be possible to establish residency, by having someone who knows you or your spouse testify that you have lived in the state for at least 90 days.
Grounds for divorce are classified as fault-based and no-fault based.
To be eligible for an online divorce in the State of Illinois, both spouses must agree to a no-fault divorce. The only no-fault ground for divorce in Illinois is ‘irreconcilable differences’ which basically means that the marriage is broken and cannot be fixed. This ground can be used under the following conditions:
● the spouses have lived separate and apart continuously for 2 years ("separate and apart" doesn’t necessarily mean separate housing; if the spouses are separated but continue to reside in the same household, they must show that they have lived as if they were "separate and apart" – basically as roommates);
● irreconcilable differences have caused the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage;
● past efforts at reconciliation have failed, and
● future efforts at reconciliation would be impracticable and not in the best interests of the family.
If both spouses agree in writing that they have lived separate and apart for 6 months prior to the judgment of divorce, then the 2 year period can be waived.
Fault-based grounds have to be proven in court, so they won’t work for an online divorce. But in cases that were already going to be contested, fault-based grounds do have their advantages in terms of getting the court to rule in your favor on certain issues. In Illinois, the fault-based grounds include:
● Impotence/Sexual Deprivation
● Attempts to take the other spouse’s life
● Abandonment for at least a year
● Infidelity or Adultery
● Felony conviction
● Extreme physical abuse or domestic violence
● Alcohol abuse or drug addiction for at least two years
● Infecting your spouse with an STD
Other requirements for an online divorce include the following:
● The forms need to be filled together by the spouses
● Both spouses will need to be in attendance for the final court hearing
● The wife should not be pregnant at the time of filing for divorce
● Neither spouse has an active divorce case already filed
How Do I Apply for A Divorce Over the Internet?
The Application Process
To apply for a web divorce, first, you will need to prove your eligibility by answering a few quick questions about your residency, your spouse’s location, and your willingness to both have a divorce. After you qualify, you will start a more detailed questionnaire about your case. This is for the online divorce site to gather all the information needed to select and complete your divorce paperwork kit. The following is some of the information that you will be expected to provide to move ahead with your application:
1. Information about yourself and your spouse - personal information such as date of birth, parents details, social security number, immigration details, etc.
2. Date and location of your marriage - the date and location where you got married or had a union helps implement or nullify any specific laws of the area that granted the union.
3. Children and pregnancy - how many children the couple currently has, their respective ages, adoption details (if any), any pregnancies, and if the children are residents of the state.
4. Properties and debts - any real estate jointly or individually owned by either spouse needs to be accounted for wealth distribution. The same goes for any debts owed by either spouse.
5. Filing party - which spouse is filing for divorce and which spouse will be the respondent. The filing party has to pay the filing fee for the divorce.
6. Current home - the current address the couple or spouses are residing in to receive any letters from the court.
The great thing about an online divorce is that you won’t have to learn Illinois state law or deal with expensive attorneys. The online divorce site will use the information you provide to fill out all of the necessary forms for case for you. The ready-to-file documents are usually ready in around 2 business days.
So, as we said earlier, it really is worth the effort to come to an agreement for an uncontested divorce with your spouse, so that you can benefit from the fast, convenient, and inexpensive services of online divorce. You can file for an online divorce in Illinois here