Resolving Issues During a Contested Divorce in Illinois
During divorce, spouses must address and settle a wide variety of legal issues related to how they will divide the various aspects of their shared lives into two separate households. The agreement or lack thereof with regard to these important issues speaks to whether the divorce is “contested” or “uncontested.” When a divorce is contested, it is important for spouses to understand the steps they must take as they work to reach a resolution.
Addressing the Issues Which Must Be Resolved During Divorce
Whether a divorce is contested or uncontested in Illinois, the dissolution of the marriage is a formal process that begins with the filing of a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and ends with an action by a court of law. A divorce cannot be finalized until all outstanding legal issues are resolved. With regard to a contested divorce in Illinois, the subject matter in contest (in dispute) includes some or all of the following:
- Allocation of Parental Responsibility (formerly known as Child Custody)
- Child Support
- Spousal Support
- Property Division
With regard to parental responsibility, allegations of capacity or fitness-related deficiencies may be leveled by one party, accusing the other of failing to meet their parental responsibilities or a pattern of unlawful immoral activity (e.g., addiction-related issues).
As concerns the division of property, disputes may exist regarding what assets and liabilities are considered marital property and thus subject to equitable division under state law. One spouse may attempt to hide income or assets, thereby undermining the fair and equitable division that the law requires, or a spouse may argue that certain assets (e.g., an inheritance) are non-marital property and thus not subject to division.
Obtaining Temporary Orders While Divorce is Pending
Until disputes have been resolved in a contested divorce, whether formally in court or informally through mediation, life goes on. Children must be cared for, bills must be paid, and property must be safeguarded and maintained. Prior to the entry of a final divorce decree, either spouse may petition the court for temporary relief, and if their requests are granted, a temporary court order will be issued to ensure that short-term parental responsibility, parenting time, child support, spousal maintenance, and property obligations are met. With these important issues addressed, a divorcing spouse can focus on utilizing formal processes to make a detailed and accurate accounting of the pool of income, property, and other assets which will be divided between the spouses and function as a basis for calculating fair and accurate child and spousal support orders.
If you need help resolving the outstanding issues in a contested divorce, the skilled, experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Nancy Kasko, LLC can protect your rights and advocate for your interests as you work to reach a favorable resolution. Contact our Wheaton divorce lawyers at 630-836-8540 to schedule a free consultation.
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