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Posted on in Divorce

Importance of Filing First in Out-of-State DivorceLong periods of separation can precede a couple’s decision to divorce. Spouses might obtain a legal separation or simply choose to try living apart before they decide on divorce. The separation will have little effect on the divorce process if the spouses live in the same area. In fact, it can make the dissolution of the marriage easier because Illinois presumes irreconcilable differences when a couple lives apart for at least six months. However, living in a different county or state changes where a spouse is allowed to file for divorce. The location of a divorce case can influence how it is settled.

Residency Requirements

Spouses can file for divorce in any state, as long as one of them is a permanent resident. Each state has a residency requirement in order to qualify to file for divorce there. For instance, Illinois requires a person to live in the state for 90 days. When each spouse qualifies for residency in a different state, the divorce hearings will take place in whichever state the divorce is first filed in. If the other spouse files for divorce in his or her own state afterwards, his or her filing may be dismissed because there is already an active divorce case.

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Couples Trying Semi-Separation Before DivorceSome couples who are considering divorce choose separation as an alternative. A legal separation involves many of the same financial and parenting provisions of divorce without dissolving a marriage. During the separation, spouses have time to consider whether they want to go through with a divorce. A full separation is still a legal process that involves creating a formal agreement that a court must approve. Instead, couples may try an in-house separation, which some call semi-separating. Spouses who semi-separate can behave as if they have separated without the obligations of a legal separation.

Forms of Semi-Separation

Spouses have several ways that they can live separately within the same residence. A court may recognize a couple as being legally separated while living together, as long as they make an effort to divide their finances and responsibilities. Semi-separating eases a couple into a more complete separation by starting with their social interaction. Semi-separation may occur in phases, such as:

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divorce grieving, Kane County divorce attorneysDivorce is different for everyone who experiences it, and the length of time it takes to move through the grieving process can vary greatly from person to person. We all hear a variety of accounts from friends, family members, and co-workers of their personal experiences with divorce, but none of them can ever prepare you for how you feel when the event actually happens for you. Even more unpredictable is how you will end up coping, how long it will take to process the loss, and ultimately, how long it will take to finally heal from the whole ordeal.

Signs You are Moving in the Right Direction

Experts from Psychology Today report that a person’s emotional recovery time depends on a number of factors. The grieving process is not cut and dry, and it does not unfold the same way for everyone. Whether you saw the end of your marriage coming, you were abandoned, or were abused can all affect the length of your recovery time. Whether you share children together, are unable to support yourself financially, or experienced infidelity can also impact how long it takes for you to navigate the loss.

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Posted on in Divorce
For many divorcing couples, a long-term separation may seem like the ideal way to warm up to the idea of marriage dissolution and determine if it’s really the best move for you and your partner. According to The New York Times, long-term separation works very well for some couples experiencing marital trouble. For one couple, John Frost and his wife, they see no need to divorce though they don’t even live in the same city. “Since separating we get along better than we ever have,” Frost told the Times. They still file joint tax returns and she’s still covered by his insurance. “To tie a bow around it would only make it uglier,” he says. “When people ask me about my relationship status, I usually just say ‘it’s complicated. I like my wife, I just can’t live with her.’”  Long term separation vs. divorce IMAGE During the Great Recession of 2008, according to the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia, “among those who were considering a divorce prior to the recession, a large minority of couples say the recession caused them to postpone or put aside divorce.” This meant that more unhappy couples were living together than ever before because they had no other option—but it also meant that many couples were opting for legal or long-term separation rather than divorce to save on divorce costs. Surprisingly, less than 30 percent of surveyed couples said that the recession brought financial stress to their marriage, which means that most couples that divorced during the recession likely were headed in that direction anyway. The idea that a long-term trial separation before a divorce is a good idea may not be true for everyone, however. According to Forbes, “without a formal legal agreement that defines its terms, long-term separation can be a recipe for financial disaster.” This is especially the case for women. According to Forbes, reasons that a long-term separation without divorce can be disastrous include (but are not limited to):
  • An opportunity for the primary earner spouse to hide assets
  • A chance that your spouse’s financial situation will change and you could get less
  • Either one of you could meet someone new
If you or someone you know is considering divorce, the most important first step is to contact an experienced family law attorney. Don’t go through it alone. For a consultation to learn how we can help you, contact Goostree Law Group today.
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