Skip to main content

Are you a legal professional? Visit our professional site

Please enter a legal issue and/or a location
Begin typing to search, use arrow keys to navigate, use enter to select

Illinois Divorce Laws

As with marriage laws and procedures, states may regulate the manner in which married couples may get divorced. The Illinois divorce laws require residency in the state for at least 90 days, but there is no waiting period before your divorce is final. Illinois also recognizes "no fault" divorce on the grounds of "irretrievable breakdown" or after a legal separation of at least two years. Other grounds for divorce include domestic violence, drug addiction, and willful desertion.

Illinois Divorce Laws

States tend to handle divorce differently. The main provisions of Illinois' divorce laws are listed in the table below.

Code Section

750 ILCS 5/401, et seq. and 5/451 et seq.

Residency Requirements

One spouse must be resident of Illinois for 90 days before commencing action.

Waiting Period

Final when entered subject to right of appeal.

'No Fault' Grounds for Divorce

Irretrievable breakdown; separation (2 yrs.). Note: Under certain conditions, parties may file joint petition for simplified dissolution.

Defenses to a Divorce Filing


Other Grounds for Divorce

Adultery; cruelty or violence; willful desertion for 1 yr.; drug/alcohol addiction for 2 yrs.; impotency; unexplained absence; conviction of crime; venereal disease; 2 yr. separation by irreconcilable differences; undissolved prior marriage, attempted murder of spouse.

No Fault Divorce Laws

As referenced above, Illinois is one of many states that offers what is known as a “no fault” divorce. No fault divorce means that you do not have to prove that your spouse did anything wrong. Instead, you just have to give any reason that the state honors for the divorce. In Illinois, the reason is that the marriage is “irretrievably broken,” which is legalese for you and your spouse do not get along and your marital relationship cannot be repaired. Illinois also has alternatives to the standard divorce, such as an annulment or legal separation.

If you have a family, you should be aware of Illinois child custody laws, as well as Illinois laws pertaining to child support guidelines and child support enforcement. If you’d like to do more research on your own, you can find more introductory information in FindLaw’sdivorcesection.

Getting Divorced in Illinois? Make Sure You Lawyer Up

Going through a divorce can be an emotionally and legally difficult process. You might find that consulting with an attorney can ease the strain of dealing with both the divorce paperwork and your soon-to-be ex-spouse -- also, your estranged spouse likely will have legal representation as well. Get started today and meet with an experienced divorce attorney in Illinois.

You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help

Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.

Or contact an attorney near you:

Next Steps: Search for a Local Attorney

Contact a qualified attorney.

Begin typing to search, use arrow keys to navigate, use enter to select
Copied to clipboard

Find a Lawyer

More Options