What is the general court process for a divorce?

On Behalf of | Mar 7, 2022 | Family Law

Filing for a divorce can be a stressful situation. It only becomes worse when you have no idea how the process works or what will happen.

According to the Illinois Courts, a typical divorce with children will follow a standard path.

After filing

Your first step is filing your divorce petition. Once you do this, you need to serve your spouse with the petition. He or she then has time to respond. This means either agreeing to your requests or issuing objections and alternative options.

Next steps

Since you have children, the state requires you and your spouse to attend and complete a parenting class. You must pay for this unless the judge waives the fee.

You then go into negotiations to work out a settlement. You have to decide on important issues including child support and visitation, custody, spousal support and property division.


If you reach an agreement, you will go to court and the judge will review it, approve it and issue a final decree. Your marriage is over, and the divorce process ends. If you do not come to an agreement, you will go to court where the judge will make decisions you could not. He or she will then issue final orders and end your marriage.

The most time-consuming part of your divorce will be reaching a settlement or trying to reach one. You have a lot of control over that, so if you and your spouse can go into the divorce already in agreement about the issues, then you can make the process move along more quickly.