Q: I heard that the annulment law will change so there will alone be one arena for divorce. Is that true?
A: Yes. Starting Jan. 1, 2016, the alone area for annulment in Illinois will be clashing difference. No added brainy cruelty, or any of the added old grounds.
The change comes from a above check of the Illinois annulment law — clearly accepted as the Illinois Alliance and Dissolution of Alliance Act. The aftermost check had been in 1977, so abounding anticipation accession was overdue.
The new revisions try to abate some of annulment court’s adamantine edges. Proving accountability to get afar generally afflicted up trouble, so all the accepted area for annulment are actuality aished, and replaced by clashing differences. Additionally aished are the words “custody” and “visitation.” Now a adjudicator will accomplish an “allocation of affectionate responsibilities.”
Our accepted law says that if you appetite to get divorced, “proper and acceptable affidavit of the actuality of grounds” is required. It lists 10 fault-based grounds, and clashing differences.
In practice, best Illinois divorces accept been based on clashing differences, or brainy cruelty. The added alien area like bigamy, affair or “habitual drunkenness” are about never used.
After Jan. 1, “grounds” don’t abide any more. A adjudicator will aloof accept to actuate two things: that “irreconcilable differences accept acquired the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage,” and that either accomplished attempts to accommodate accept bootless or that approaching attempts “would be absurd and not in the best interests of the family.”
The law specifies that if “the parties alive abstracted and afar for a connected aeon of not beneath than six months anon above-mentioned the access of the acumen abandoning the marriage,” again clashing differences accept been proven. Again it’s an “irreable presumption.”
That will be altered from the accepted analogue of clashing differences. Now, it requires a two-year break — or six months and a accounting abandonment from both spouses of a two-year separation. Bodies who can’t prove clashing differences either way beneath the accepted adaptation of the law usually use brainy animality as grounds.
The new law makes clashing differences easier by abbreviation aggregate to six months, and by not acute annihilation in autograph from the added spouse.
Being afar for six months won’t be the alone way to prove clashing differences beneath the new law. Proving that article abroad constitutes clashing differences should be possible. But a six-month break will be easiest, so that’s what best bodies will apparently do.
In accession to authoritative Illinois a authentic no-fault annulment state, and replacing the words “custody” and “visitation” with “allocation of affectionate responsibilities,” the new annulment law requires parents of kids to book a “proposed parenting plan,” and gives added advice on relocating with kids, based on specific distances.
It additionally requires new connected forms, which may accumulate procedures. And it makes a “joint simplified divorce” added available, by adopting the assets limits.
Time will acquaint how all these changes work, and whether they’re absolute or cosmetic.
John Roska is a advocate with Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation. You can accelerate your questions to The Law Q&A, 302 N. First St., Champaign, IL 61820. Questions may be edited for space.
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