The Dangers Of Do-It-Yourself Divorce In Illinois

At Goddard & Malmquist, we understand the appeal of the quick divorce kits that you can download online, but we also know the dangers. Our goal is to ensure that you do not make any mistakes now that you will later regret.

Did you know? You need your own divorce lawyer, even if your spouse already has one. The same family law attorney cannot represent both parties.

Sure, It's Cheap, But Do-It-Yourself Divorce Puts You At Risk

There are many risks and drawbacks to do-it-yourself divorces. Here are only a few:

  • Property division agreements are final after 30 days and cannot be revisited. This means that if you make a mistake in the division of your joint assets and debts, fail to understand the tax consequences of a certain arrangement or later realize your ex-spouse received an unfair advantage, you have no legal recourse.
  • Agreements involving the allocation of parental responsibilities are final for two years, except in cases of serious endangerment to the child. Even if your circumstances change — such as gaining a new job out of state — you will not be allowed to modify the arrangement.
  • You may get stuck with an incorrect child support or alimony amount. Unless you undergo a substantial change in circumstance, you will not be able to change the amount of child support or spousal maintenance you owe or receive — even when you realize that the agreed-upon amount is not right.
  • Having to go to court later is expensive. Often, divorcing couples who try to do it themselves find out down the road that certain parenting provisions, debt division arrangements and other issues were never addressed in their agreement. This requires them to go back to court and spend additional money to resolve issues that could have been addressed at the beginning with the help of an attorney.
  • You may not be allowed to enter the agreement. Too frequently, the agreements parties make do not adhere to Illinois law. When this is the case, the Judge will not enter it.

Schedule A Consultation Today

To learn more about the dangers of do-it-yourself divorce in Illinois and how Goddard & Malmquist can help, contact us at 847-382-3995, or you may send us an email to set up a consultation.