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What are Irreconcilable Differences in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on May 27, 2022 in Divorce

shutterstock_298029158.jpgChoosing to divorce your spouse is a difficult decision. There are various reasons that couples make the final decision to dissolve their marriage, from infidelity to unmatched values. Illinois is a no-fault divorce state, which means that spouses do not need to express the reasoning behind the divorce. In a no-fault divorce, the only grounds for divorce are irreconcilable differences. 

Defining Irreconcilable Differences

When things are irreconcilable, they are unable to be made compatible. In divorce terms, irreconcilable differences refer to couples being completely incompatible and unable to resolve their differences. This is an overarching term used to describe the many reasons that couples argue, leading to a divorce. For example, in a state with fault-based divorce, infidelity may be listed as the grounds for divorce. However, infidelity and other marital miscouduct usually has little bearing on the outcome of an Illinois divorce.

Illinois law on the Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act describes irreconcilable differences as meeting these four criteria:

  • The many differences between spouses caused a failure in the relationship.

  • The spouses made an effort to fix these differences, but the efforts failed. 

  • Any more efforts to rebuild the marriage would not be practical or productive. 

How are Irreconcilable Differences Handled in Court?

Like all other divorce processes, spouses filing for a divorce in Illinois will have to partake in key marriage dissolution steps. These include dividing up joint property, making arrangements for financial needs, deciding on child custody and visitation arrangements, and preparing for a new stage of life as a single individual. 

The difference in a no-fault divorce state like Illinois is that couples will not have to prove fault to obtain a desirable divorce outcome. No-fault divorces emphasize an equitable division of assets, a legal term used to describe how the state divides marital property fairly and justly. For example, the spouse that does not retain the joint family home may receive a more significant portion of other financial assets to offset the value of the home. Dividing shared property equitably and fairly is up to the court's discretion and will look different for every marriage. 

Speak to a Naperville Divorce Attorney Today

If you and your spouse have irreconcilable differences that have led you to a divorce, our Naperville divorce attorneys may be able to help. At Law Office of Ronald L. Hendrix, P.C., attorneys Ronald and Christopher Hendrix have years of combined experience working with clients pursuing a divorce. Please contact our office at 630-355-7776 today for a free consultation.


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