How Long Will My Divorce Take?

how long, divorce, DuPage County Divorce AttorneyWhen most couples decide to pursue a divorce, they do so in the hopes that the process will be completed as quickly as possible. The partners are ready to be done with the marriage and move forward into the next stage of their lives. While they may recognize that certain aspects of the proceedings will take time, many often underestimate how long the process will last and may be unprepared for a drawn-out undertaking.

The length of the divorce process is entirely dependent on the circumstantial factors involved. A couple may have relatively few issues to work through, or they may have a large marital estate, children, and myriad other considerations to be made. Regardless of the number of concerns facing the parties, their ability to work together will generally have biggest impact on how long the divorce will take.

Uncontested Divorce

The most efficient type of marital dissolution is an uncontested divorce. Parties to an uncontested divorce have generally made all of the necessary arrangements for finances, child issues, and spousal support, prior to filing. Thus, there is little for the court to do but review the divorce agreement to ensure it is legally sound and conscionable. An uncontested divorce can be completed in less than 30 days, in some cases, but, depending on the schedule of the court, may take longer.

Mediated or Collaborative Divorce

For couples who agree that divorce is the best option but cannot agree on the particulars of the necessary arrangements, the process may take a bit longer. Mediation, for example, can help a couple reach a workable agreement, but may take several sessions over a number of weeks to complete. Similarly, a collaborative law divorce often involves financial and/or mental health professionals, and the drafting of a collaborative divorce agreement may take time. There is no set timeframe in which these types of divorces must be completed, as they depend greatly on the couple’s ability to work together.

Litigated Divorce

Divorce litigation can take, by far, the longest of all possible divorce scenarios. In addition to concerns regarding the court’s schedule, a single motion filed in the case allows the other party as much as three weeks to respond; and a divorce case may have a large number of filed motions. Many professionals will offer, when pressed, an average timeframe of around one year for a litigated divorce, some cases will take much longer.

The Illinois Supreme Court has established that divorces involving children are expected to be completed within 18 months. If the case cannot meet such a deadline, the court is required to make a formal finding as to why the case must continue beyond 18 months.

No matter what type of divorce you may be pursuing, an experienced DuPage County family law attorney can help you expedite the process. We will work with you every step of the way to maximize efficiency and reduce redundancies. This often allows the process to move faster without sacrificing your rights. Call our office today to schedule your free initial consultation.

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