How is Marital Property Divided in an Illinois Divorce? 

Posted on in Divorce

Wheaton Divorce LawyerSome states divide marital property 50/50, giving both assets and debt equally to each spouse following divorce. Illinois, however, is what is known as an “equitable distribution” state. This means the law requires marital property to be divided in a way that is fair, but not necessarily equal. Many factors, such as the length of the marriage and each spouse’s future earning potential, will affect how property is divided. 

Understanding how the principle of equitable distribution is likely to affect the division of marital property in your divorce is an important part of planning for the future. In this blog, we will give a general overview of the property division process. A qualified Illinois divorce attorney can answer any further questions you have.

Preparing for the Property Division Process

Spouses who are getting divorced can make the process go faster and more smoothly by collecting necessary documents as early as possible. If one spouse is likely to make the divorce process difficult, it may be wise to obtain documents before even filing. Both spouses will need to create a list with supporting evidence that details their property and debts. This includes, but is not limited to, the following documents: 

  • Bank statements, including savings and checking accounts

  • Credit card statements

  • Mortgage statements, home equity loan details, and any other information about real estate

  • Investment account information, including unrealized stock options

  • W-2s, bonus agreements, and any other work compensation 

  • Vehicle loans or titles 

  • Small business assets and loans 

What Factors Affect the Division of Marital Property? 

The more spouses can do to resolve the terms of the divorce themselves, the better. Although spouses are encouraged to use alternative dispute resolution techniques like mediation to reach a divorce agreement, every agreement must first be submitted to an Illinois judge to review the agreement for fairness and legality. If a couple’s divorce agreement is unfair or illegal, a judge will send it back to the spouses for revision. 

If spouses are unable to agree about how to divide their debt and assets, an Illinois judge will need to make a determination. When judges have to decide how to split marital property, several different factors can influence their decision, including: 

  • The value of marital property and debt

  • Any valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreements 

  • How much each spouse contributed to the marriage, including the contributions of a spouse who was a homemaker 

  • The financial circumstances of each spouse at the time of the divorce, as well as the earning potential of each spouse in the future

  • Child support and spousal maintenance orders from previous marriages

  • The tax consequences of the proposed property division

  • Whether either spouse tried to hide, destroy, or waste property 

Talk to a Wheaton, IL Property Division Lawyer

At Andrew Cores Family Law Group, our skilled DuPage County divorce attorneys have experience helping individuals in every income bracket fight for a fair division of their marital property. Our priority is making sure your preferences are taken into consideration and we will work with you to create a strategy that positions you for a favorable outcome. Schedule your free initial consultation today by calling our offices at 630-871-1002.

 

Source:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=075000050HPt%2E+V&ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=6200000&SeqEnd=8675000

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