Even in the most ideal circumstances, getting divorced is challenging and involves a thorough understanding of complex Illinois law. But when one or both spouses are active members of the United States Armed Forces and are deployed, divorce becomes more complicated because military divorce laws apply. If you or your spouse are an active member of the USAF, here are three ways a military deployment could affect your Illinois divorce.
You May Need to Establish Residency
Before someone can successfully file for divorce, they need to make sure that the courts in their area have jurisdiction over their case. Military spouses may be able to file for divorce in the state where they live, where they are currently stationed, or a state that both spouses agree to file in. In Illinois, you must have either lived or been stationed in the state for 90 days to file for divorce. Keep in mind that once you file for divorce in a certain state, you will have to follow that state’s divorce laws.
You May Have to Wait Until Deployment Ends
If a spouse could file for divorce and finish the entire process while the other spouse was deployed, the deployed spouse would hardly have a fair chance to defend themselves and ensure a fair divorce decree. Divorce proceedings can be postponed until a deployed military member comes home and for 60 days thereafter. Deployed spouses who want to move forward with the divorce can waive the requirement to postpone the divorce proceedings, but it can be challenging to manage a divorce while deployed, especially if a military member is stationed abroad.
Your Parenting Time May Be Affected
While Illinois law encourages both parents to have a relationship with their children, a deployed parent might not have parental responsibilities (decision-making authority) or parenting time (visitation) while they are deployed. But judges will often let deployed spouses have electronic parenting time, make up for missed parenting time before or after deployment, and sometimes designate a family member, such as a grandparent or step-parent, to have visitation while they are gone.
Meet with a DuPage County Military Divorce Lawyer
Getting divorced from a deployed spouse adds extra layers of complexity to an already difficult process. If you are a military spouse and want to file for divorce, get help from the experienced team of DuPage County military divorce attorneys with Law Office of Martoccio & Martoccio. We will help you explore your options under Illinois law and fight to ensure you get a fair divorce decree. Call us now at 630-920-8855 to schedule a free, confidential case review.