States have various methods to address property division during a divorce. For example, community property states generally divide the property 50/50, but Illinois does not do this. Instead, Illinois is an equitable distribution state. This means the divorce court decides which spouse gets what based on an equitable standard. Property division issues can be contentious, so talk to Chicago property division lawyer Michael C. Craven for assistance.

Illinois Is A No Fault Divorce State

Illinois has a no-fault standard in divorces. This means no matter how bad your spouse may have been, the state will not determine fault for the breakup. For instance, if your spouse had an affair that caused the divorce, this is not considered by the judge to decide anything including how property is divided. Some clients may think because the other spouse was ‘bad,’ they should receive more property after the divorce. This is not the case in Illinois.

What Is Considered Equitable In Illinois?

Divorce judges in Illinois have a lot of latitude on equitable property division. How property is divided is decided on a case–by–case basis. The court will examine various factors in each case including the contributions each party made to acquiring assets, a party’s contribution to the family as a homemaker, the length of the marriage, the economic circumstances of each spouse, the ages and health of the parties, parenting obligations going forward, the ability to acquire assets post-divorce, and more.

What About Dissipation?

While the court does not usually fault one of the spouses for the divorce and does not decide property division questions based on that, the court may consider dissipation as another factor. Dissipation refers to money spent after the marriage fell apart in a way that did not benefit the relationship.

For example, suppose one of the partners spent money for travel, gifts or lavish meals with a romantic partner. If one of the parties spends in this way and the court determines it is dissipation, the person who spent the money could be required to pay the other person back.

That said, this determination is not from deciding someone was at fault. Instead, it was simply a matter of misusing the funds in the marriage.

Speak To Our Chicago Property Division Lawyer Now

Did you and your spouse own property in Chicago in the West Loop, Lincoln Park, Hyde Park, or another popular neighborhood? If you have savings, real estate, investments, retirement plans, and other assets, then you will probably need to deal with property division during your divorce.

Attorney Michael C. Craven is a skilled Chicago property division attorney who can help you. He represents clients with property division cases in Chicago, Deerfield, Glencoe, Highwood, Lake Forces, Northbrook, Evanston, and more. Please contact attorney Michael C. Craven today.

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