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Illinois, like most states, encourages the use of mediation before and during divorce cases.A mediator is a neutral party that attempts to reconcile you and your spouse, eliminating the need for a divorce.Once all of the issues are settled, the judge will sign a Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage officially finalizing the divorce.

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In certain instances, when it is unfeasible to split a property in half, a judge may award a property to one spouse and award financial compensation equal to half of the property’s value to the other.This property distribution is only applicable to Marital—or shared—Property.The court may recommend a mediator, or you can research available mediators in your area.These professionals do not have the final say on any issues; you and your spouse must make any final decisions.If your spouse decides to file a Response to the Petition, in which they agree with all of the points of the Petition, and there is no Counter Petition, then your divorce is uncontested.

It is in your best interests to attempt to secure an uncontested divorce because it will expedite the proceedings and significantly reduce the cost.

Attorneys who are experienced in divorce cases can provide expertise essential for a desirable outcome.

These attorneys will represent you in court, handle most of the scheduling and document submissions, and dialogue with various court officials.

At this point, you will require a lawyer to represent your interests, provide legal advice and manage the clerical duties required to proceed.

A divorce attorney is likely to charge by the hour, and a contested divorce could last months or, in some rare cases, more than a year.

Separate Property is not subject to divorce proceedings and typically include Illinois courts may direct that you or your spouse provide support in the form of a lump payment, periodic payments or a combination.