Looking to the Future with a Sense of Calm
Same sex couples face many of the same issues as heterosexual couples when divorce comes into play. The process is emotional and painful; a partnership that was believed to be timeless has come to an end.
That said, same sex divorce is not nearly as prevalent; after all, the legality of same sex marriage is still relatively new. On June 1, 2014, same sex marriage was legalized in Illinois, and in June of 2015, the Supreme Court ruled that banning safe sex marriage was unconstitutional. Even if we look at the earlier date in Illinois, legal same sex marriage has been in effect for less than 10 years.
Now that time has passed and more same sex couples are marrying, it is not surprising that a more significant number are seeking a divorce. As with all couples, people grow and change; the commitments they made at one point in time are simply not what they want for their futures.
When marriages end, the fall-out can be considerable; children, parents, relatives, and friends are all impacted, but that is no reason to remain in an unhappy relationship. In many ways, divorce is a welcome answer to your problems.
Legal representation is important as you file for divorce and move forward.
Going from one household to two requires significant change that can impact both you and your family. A Woodridge same sex divorce lawyer can help you navigate the turbulent seas that often accompany a divorce.
Why Choose Wolfe & Stec
The Perfect Combination of Guidance and Protection
Divorce: it’s both an end and a beginning. The decisions made during the process can impact you, your family, and your future. You want to be sure you make wise choices.
Divorce law is complicated, and even in the most amicable of separations, disagreements can occur. Our firm’s experience, approach, and reputation make us the divorce attorney of choice for same sex couples in Woodridge. Consider what we bring to the table.
Specific Experience: To put it succinctly, we know Illinois divorce law. For over 20 years, we have provided our clients with the highest quality legal services, helping them to end unhappy unions and embark upon bright futures. We understand the legal issues surrounding the division of property, custody, child support, and alimony. And, because of our dedication to this area of the law, we are vigilant about staying up to date on any changes that occur. When you engage our divorce lawyer you can rest assured that the legal advice and representation you receive are unparalleled.
Client-Focused Approach: The hallmark of our service is three-fold. We combine critical attention to detail with empathic communication and aggressive negotiation and litigation. We appreciate that the process is overwhelming – after all, you are leaving an important part of your life behind. As a same sex couple, the ability to marry legally was a big deal, so ending your relationship is likely to be emotional. We understand and appreciate how painful this can be. Thus, we always communicate with this in mind: divorce is personal. Additionally, we pay attention to the little things that can play a big role in how you move forward. Each family is different, we take nothing for granted. Finally, we have your best interests at heart; we will aggressively negotiate and, if necessary, litigate on your behalf. Our goal is to protect you, your family, and your future.
Reputation for Excellence: We have a well-earned reputation for success in our cases and client satisfaction. We provide each client with hands-on, personal service and leverage our knowledge and experience for positive results. We take our responsibility as your same sex divorce attorney seriously, and we work tirelessly to ensure that the settlement we reach is in your best interests.
In short, we provide you with the service you need and deserve. Not all attorneys have worked with same sex couples; they may simply not understand the nuances of the issues you are facing. We have the experience you need and the approach you will respect.
Should you be thinking about a divorce, reach out to us today at 630-305-0222. We are proud to offer a free consultation, giving you the opportunity to learn more about our practice and personality. We are ready to go to work for you and help you begin the next chapter of your life.
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Things You Should Know About Divorce in Woodridge
Residency Requirements Are Specific
The path to same sex divorce in Woodridge mirrors the road for those who are heterosexual. You see, there are some specific rules in the state that must be followed. The first applies to residency.
In order to file for divorce, either you or your spouse must reside in Illinois for at least 90 days.
That said, you certainly don’t need to be living together. In fact, you can file in the circuit court in the county where either of you lives. If you do not follow these rules, you will not be able to proceed. As your same sex divorce lawyer, we will ensure the filing process is correct.
Things You Need to Consider
The issues shared below are important for all couples. Because same sex marriage has been legal for only a relatively short period of time, sometimes certain aspects of divorce can be particularly challenging.
We are well aware of potential roadblocks and can help you address them as you determine a plan for the custody of your children, the division of your property, and alimony (referred to as spousal maintenance in Illinois).
Each of these issues, in and of themselves, can result in extreme feelings. We will leverage our experience to bring a sense of calm to discussions, helping you to negotiate a fair and reasonable settlement.
The Divorce Process
In Illinois, the divorce process is segmented into three phases: temporary relief, discovery, and resolution. As your same sex divorce lawyer, we will guide you through them all, from beginning to end. There are specific time constraints that come into play in each phase. We will make sure these are adhered to and you are placed in a position to succeed.
Divorce Is Never Easy
Our Same Sex Divorce Lawyers Help Manage Conflict
When two people separate, it is likely that they will have differing opinions on how to move forward. To be honest, it is not surprising that conflict occurs. So much of what needs to be determined is incredibly personal. The decisions made during the negotiation phase will set the stage for your future, and their impact will be felt for years to come.
Among the issues you may need to address that can become complicated are:
- Children: Custody, visitation, and support are all hot buttons. As parents, you have both been used to being present and involved on a daily basis. Change can be difficult for both adults and children, and reaching an agreement for their care can be onerous.
- Finances: Moving from one household to two impacts your finances significantly. Determining the best way to manage this can be challenging — one party always seems to believe they are being taken advantage of.
- Property: The family home, cars, and other belongings are often the source of tremendous discord. Developing an agreement that you both can agree upon can require in-depth negotiations.
Issues that can complicate things further are infidelity and even relationships that have begun after a separation. Additionally, if the split was not amicable, anger can raise its ugly head. When this happens the ability to agree on anything can be difficult. We are experienced in managing tense situations and volatile personalities. Allow our family law attorneys to take the lead and handle communication on your behalf.
Woodridge Same Sex Divorce – Frequently Asked Questions
Our Woodridge Same Sex Divorce Lawyer Answers Your Most Pressing Concerns
Your marriage is ending, you are entering a complex legal process and your life is about to undergo considerable change. It is no wonder that you have questions. Below, our same sex divorce attorney has addressed some of the questions we hear most frequently.
My partner and I are separating amicably. Do I need to have my own same sex divorce attorney?
Yes, even under seemingly perfect circumstances, conflicts can arise. You want someone representing you who has your best interests at heart. You absolutely need your own attorney!
I was married in another state; can I still get divorced in Illinois if I now live in Woodridge?
Yes. As long as either you or your spouse has been an Illinois resident for at least 90 days, you can obtain a divorce in this state.
How will visitation and custody be determined if I have not formally adopted my partner’s children?
The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act
addresses this issue. The courts will take many things into account, but in many situations, same sex partners file a Petition for Visitation. Your same sex divorce lawyer can help you with this process.
How is property divided in a same sex divorce?
According to Illinois statute (750 ILCS 5/503)
, marital property will be divided equitably, which is not the same as equally. The courts will examine various factors including tax returns, pay stubs, bank statements, and more when making this determination. Your same sex divorce attorney can explain the process in more detail.
Are there other options to consider in addition to divorce?
Yes, you should discuss these with your Woodridge same sex divorce lawyer. They include mediation, collaborative divorce, and even void marriages and annulment.
We hope the information shared above addresses some of your concerns. That said, we recognize that no two relationships are identical, and the specifics of yours will determine a great deal as the divorce process progresses. Reach out to us to schedule a consultation during which we can learn more about your situation and provide more specific answers to your concerns.
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Wolfe & Stec: Same Sex Divorce Attorneys of Choice in Woodridge
Compassionate Counsel Upon Which You Can Depend
Choosing a same sex divorce attorney is an important step in preparing for and protecting your future. You want to work with a professional who not only has an in-depth understanding of Illinois divorce law and a familiarity with the local courts, but one who is also experienced in handling these issues for same sex couples. At Wolf & Stec, we have earned a reputation for providing the highest quality, attentive legal services to our clients. When you engage us, we take the time to know you and to understand your marriage.
In divorce, details matter, and sometimes the smallest things can make the biggest difference.
We appreciate that the process can seem overwhelming. It is our responsibility to manage it on your behalf, bringing a sense of calm as you move forward.
Divorce law is complex, and there is a great deal involved in ending a marriage. Our same sex divorce attorney is ready to go to work for you. Reach out today at 630-305-0222 to schedule a consultation. Time is an important factor in divorce; the sooner you can get legal advice and counsel, the better. We are ready to go to work for you immediately.
Attorney Natalie Stec
Natalie M. Stec, born and raised in Illinois, and earned her Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her practice has been concentrated in significant pre and post decree marital and family law cases; including custody, visitation, support, and paternity matters. She has important criminal defense experience in both misdemeanor and felony cases. She is a very dedicated and passionate litigator. [ Attorney Bio ]