Divorce is a difficult decision. But once you've made it, you're probably eager to get it over with and move on with your life. How long the process can takes varies widely from state to state, and from couple to couple, but until recently, Illinois wasn't necessarily the ideal state for people hoping for a simple divorce.
Luckily, recent changes to Illinois divorce laws have made the process much easier and faster for many couples. Divorce still isn't instantaneous, but it no longer needs to be a multi-year process.
Now, Illinois couples no longer need to prove that one party is fault - only that there are "irreconcilable differences" that caused the marriage to break down.
This move to a "no-fault" divorce system makes even contested divorces a lot faster. According to the Chicago Tribune, even when one spouse doesn't want to get divorced, the process can still be completed in six months.
If you're planning to get divorced in Illinois, here are three wait times you might need to be prepared for.
90 days living in Illinois
To get a divorce in Illinois, you and your spouse need to have lived in the state for 90 days.
6 months living apart
One way to easily prove irreconcilable differences is if you've lived apart for six months or longer. Under the revised Illinois law, six months living apart is proof enough that your differences are irreconcilable.
30 days (or less) from filing to finalization
If you and your spouse can agree on division of property, debt and pensions - and, if you have children, a parenting plan - with the help of an attorney, it's possible to have your divorce finalized in a month or less.
In general, the more things a divorcing couple can agree on, the faster and simpler the process can be. One thing that should be easy to agree on: simplifying the process so you both can move on with life.