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Fault Grounds in Illinois Divorce Abolished?

By Maxine Weiss Kunz

Illinois divorce grounds, Skokie IL divorce lawyersFault grounds in divorce in Illinois are abolished as of January 1, 2016. What does that mean? In short, the following grounds should no longer be plead in a petition for dissolution of marriage and will no longer suffice as grounds for a divorce:

  • Adultery (cheating);
  • Desertion (left the home);
  • Habitual drunkenness (alcoholism);
  • Drug addiction;
  • Attempted murder;
  • Mental cruelty (emotional abuse);
  • Physical cruelty (physical abuse);
  • Infecting your spouse with a sexually transmitted disease (STD).

What remains as grounds for divorce is the no fault grounds of “Irreconcilable Differences.” This is the ground that asserts the marriage has broken down to the extent it can no longer be repaired and that divorce is imminent.

Additionally, you are no longer required to live separate and apart from your spouse for a period of two (2) years to satisfy the no fault ground of Irreconcilable Differences. If your spouse agrees that the marriage is broken, there is no waiting period to satisfy this ground. If your husband or wife does not agree the marriage is broken, then you must wait six (6) months to satisfy the separation period required under this no fault ground.

Like previously, “separation” does not require separate homes. Separation is subjective and can occur while two parties continue to live together.

This new law, deleting the availability of pleading fault grounds, will apply to all cases filed on or after January 1, 2016; it will also apply to all cases filed before January 1, 2016 that have not yet been finalized as of January 1, 2016. If you have any questions, please consult a lawyer licensed to practice law in the State of Illinois.

For more information about divorce in Illinois, contact the experienced Skokie divorce lawyers at Weiss-Kunz & Oliver, LLC. Call 312-605-4041 to schedule an initial consultation today.

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