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Do You Qualify for a Joint Simplified Divorce?Illinois offers a quicker and easier divorce process for some spouses, called a joint simplified dissolution of marriage. The process has less required paperwork and can often be resolved in one court hearing. However, there are several strict requirements that spouses must meet to qualify for a joint simplified divorce. The state created the process for spouses who have not been married long, have limited assets and will not remain connected to each other after the divorce. Check this list of requirements to determine if you qualify for joint simplified divorce:

  1. Marriage Duration and Separation: Your marriage must be less than eight years old, and you must be living separate and apart from each other.
  2. Agreement on Divorce: You and your spouse must both agree that irreconcilable differences are the reason for your divorce.
  3. Children: You cannot have any children from your marriage or be expecting any children through pregnancy or adoption. The existence of children would require child support and the allocation of parental responsibilities, which a simple court hearing cannot determine.
  4. Spousal Maintenance: The spouses must waive their right to receive support payments from each other after the divorce.
  5. Personal Incomes: Your individual annual gross incomes cannot exceed $30,000, and your joint annual gross income must be less than $60,000.
  6. Marital Properties: You cannot own any interest in real estate or have retirement benefits of a combined value of $10,000 or greater. The value of your marital properties subtracted by your marital debts must be less than $50,000.
  7. Property Division: You must create a written agreement that divides all marital properties that are valued at more than $100, as well as any marital debt. You and your spouse must disclose your tax returns from the years you were married and all of the assets and debts you accumulated.
  8. Pet Ownership: You must have a written agreement that determines the ownership of a companion animal and allocates responsibility for that animal. Service animals are considered separate from companion animals.

Using Simplified Divorce

People who qualify for joint simplified divorce can save time and money on the divorce process. However, the process is designed for divorces that are already relatively simple. Your divorce deserves more attention than a simplified process if you have several valuable assets from your marriage or must determine the well-being of your children. A DuPage County divorce attorney at Calabrese Associates, P.C., will help you create an advantageous divorce agreement while also respecting your time and expense. To schedule a consultation, call 630-393-3111.

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