Naperville Family Law Attorney

Naperville Family Law Lawyer

In Illinois, a marriage can be a powerful and life-changing contract. It can be beneficial for growing a family with legal protection and support. However, there are many instances when a marriage agreement does not serve the family anymore, and it is healthier for all parties involved to part ways. A Naperville family law attorney can help you end your marriage and sort out the associated details, such as child support and child custody, quickly and efficiently. 

The family law team at Vahey Law & Mediation, LLC, solely dedicates their practice and attention to family law matters. We employ a compassionate and detailed approach, taking into consideration your questions and concerns. Whether you are concerned about preserving the rights and well-being of your child or protecting your assets or estate during divorce, our team is here to serve you. 

Naperville Family Law Attorney

Comprehending Legal Separation and Divorce in Naperville, Illinois

In the state of Illinois, divorce and legal separation are two options that can be exercised to solve marital disputes or tensions.                      

Legal Separation

Legal separation is an option for married couples in Illinois that allows them to live separately from each other while still technically remaining “married” under the law. 

While the marriage is not terminated in a legal separation, issues such as spousal support, property division, child support, and child custody are addressed. To initiate a legal separation, one spouse has to have lived in Illinois for a minimum of 90 days. 

The legal separation process generally involves having to file a petition with the court, serving a spouse with paperwork, and going to court hearings. As a result, both of the spouses will end up living in separate places, with certain court-ordered agreements about asset division and childcare measures established. 


Divorce is a legal process in Illinois that is used to completely dissolve an existing marriage. Similar to legal separation, issues regarding childcare and asset division are addressed in the divorce agreement. One spouse must have established residency in Illinois for at least 90 days to file for divorce in the state. 

If you are considering separation from your spouse but are unsure whether a divorce or legal separation is right for you, then an experienced Illinois family lawyer from Vahey Law & Mediation, LLC, can assist you with this big decision. They can help you take into account critical factors, such as religious beliefs and financial considerations, enabling you to arrive at a decision that works for your specific case. 

What Are the Grounds for Divorce in Illinois?

To get a divorce in Naperville, Illinois, you must prove that there are grounds for the divorce. In the state, the only recognized reason for divorce is irreconcilable differences, meaning that all divorces in Illinois are no-fault divorces. 

To prove that the issues present in the marriage are unsolvable and must result in its termination, the spouses involved must be physically separated from each other for 6 months in or out of the home before filing for divorce. If they were not separated for 6 months, then they must state that the marriage issues are not fixable and that the divorce is in the whole family’s interest.

The Illinois Divorce Process

The time and energy that goes into an Illinois divorce process depends on many factors, including:

  • The complexity of the marital property
  • Whether there are children involved
  • The length of the marriage
  • Whether certain issues are disputed between the divorcing parties

The divorce process in Illinois generally involves the following steps: 

  • Filing the dissolution of marriage petition. To officially initiate the divorce process, one party in the marriage must issue a petition, officially known as the “Petition for Dissolution of Marriage,” with their county court. This document can include the grounds for divorce and certain initial requests.
  • Serving the papers to the other spouse. The spouse who filed the divorce petition with the county court must then give the divorce papers to the other spouse. The papers must be physical copies. The point of this is to ensure that the other party is aware of the divorce and has adequate time to give a response.
  • Asset and debt distribution. This step in the divorce process can lead to disputes, as it requires breaking up the marital property. According to Illinois law, marital property should be divided fairly, but it might not be divided equally between both parties. 
  • Determining spousal support. Spousal support, or alimony, can be determined if it is applicable. Factors such as the earning potential of both parties, the length of the marriage, and the standard of living during the marriage will be considered. 
  • Negotiating child custody, visitation, and support. This step in the divorce process can lead to disputes, as it regards who will have custody over the children, how the children will spend their time divided between the parents, and whether one parent will pay child support to the other.

To come to an agreement on the main issues that come up during a divorce, a divorcing couple can work on deciding them outside the courtroom. They may choose to have private negotiations with the assistance of a mediator. The seasoned family law mediator from Vahey Law & Mediation, LLC, can help spouses come to an agreement on their divorce issues. 

Divorce is a complex process that involves elaborate agreements and legal processes. To ensure that you are meeting all appropriate deadlines and that the interests of you and your children are being adequately represented, it’s important to work with a trustworthy and passionate family defense lawyer. If there are many disputes that cannot be solved, then the divorce case may still have to go to court, and your attorney can represent your interest there.

Children in an Illinois Divorce

In the state of Illinois, it’s important to remember that all court decisions and divorce agreement decisions should be made in the interest of the well-being of the children. Child custody, visitation, and support issues can be complex, and many disputes can arise. 

Physical custody in Illinois refers to which parent the child will live with, and legal custody addresses which parent will make important decisions regarding the child’s life, such as decisions related to education, healthcare, and day-to-day life. 

When agreeing on a parenting plan, it’s important to provide as much detail as possible about the child’s schedule and establish rules for their upbringing. Deciding and agreeing on these issues in advance, including where the child will be for certain holidays, can help parents avoid conflict later. 

The state guidelines for determining child support can be difficult to interpret. Divorce attorneys with experience in child custody and support cases can help you understand the factors involved in calculating these numbers. They can also help fight to ensure that your children are guaranteed the support they need. 

Protecting Your Assets During Divorce in Naperville

If you are considering going through the divorce process, then you may be concerned about what will happen to your assets. A defense lawyer from Vahey Law & Mediation, LLC, can represent you if your assets are under attack or if you feel that your spouse is asking for an unreasonable amount of marital property or spousal support.                                 

Our skilled team can help guide you and your divorcing spouse through the mediation process to handle asset negotiations in a private and calm manner. Mediation can help save time and money while reducing the potential for conflict after the divorce.

However, even with sound mediation, some parties may still have disputes about how assets should be divided. In this case, the dispute will have to be solved by a judge in court. In the asset division process, only marital assets, which are assets accumulated during the marriage, are subject to division under Illinois law. 

It’s important to note that, without a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement detailing which assets are separate, it may be difficult to distinguish some assets as being separate or marital property. For example, if one spouse enters a marriage with their company, and the other spouse helps grow the company with them throughout the duration of the marriage, then it may be unclear who has ownership of what assets. 

Therefore, it’s critical to work with a family law attorney who has experience with complex and highly disputed asset division issues in Illinois. They can help you understand the rules and guidelines surrounding asset division while working to ensure that you get the assets you are entitled to in a divorce. 

Let Vahey Law & Mediation, LLC, Fight for Your Family

Vahey Law & Mediation, LLC, is well aware of the challenges that can come with an Illinois divorce, including disputes over children and assets. Fortunately, our team can formulate ways to mitigate these issues. We can work with you to understand your concerns and questions, and we can develop a strategy that can optimize the terms of your divorce. 

When deciding the future of your family, it’s important to not leave critical, life-altering decisions up to chance. Contact a family lawyer from our firm today to get help defending your loved ones. Our team can help you with knowledge and support. 


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