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The effect of state laws on divorce

State laws govern various aspects of divorce, including the division of property. Each state has its own unique laws and procedural criteria. Illinois residents who are thinking about divorce may benefit from learning more about their state’s divorce laws and how those laws would affect the division of their assets.

States often impose certain conditions that must be met before any divorce proceedings can be initiated. Two common prerequisites include a minimum period of state residency and a mandatory waiting period. The start date of waiting periods usually depends on the official date of separation, a date that different states define in different ways.

The treatment of marital assets is also an aspect of divorce that state laws approach differently. The division of property during a divorce often hinges on how a state categorizes marital and separate property and the state’s property laws. There is a stark difference between how marital property is divided in states that have community property laws and how it is divided in states that enforce equitable distribution.

Spousal support, or alimony, is another part of divorce that states handle differently. There are states in which alimony is awarded only under certain, stringent conditions. Other states disallow alimony if it has been proven that the asking party has engaged in infidelity. In addition, some states place restrictions on how long alimony may be paid.

The state of residency of a couple can have a significant effect on how their divorce is conducted. It may be helpful to speak with an attorney who can provide guidance regarding property division during a divorce.