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Divorcing Your Spouse For Infidelity In Illinois
posted on 1/21/24

Just imagine the following scenario: you live with your spouse in a lovely home in Barrington. And you have been married for just over two decades.

On a night not unlike any other, you come to learn that your spouse has been cheating on you. No, this was not a one-off thing; they’ve been cheating on you consistently for nearly a decade.

You are hurt by the revelation that the love you have for your spouse is not, in fact, reciprocated and hasn’t been for quite some time.

Right after the sadness passes through you, you recognize what you must do: divorce your spouse due to their infidelity and, in doing so, obtain everything that you are entitled to.

How Can You Divorce Your Spouse If They Have Cheated On You?

The state of Illinois relies on a “no-fault” model of divorce.

If your spouse cheats on, you can divorce them. But, even if they don’t – and, more importantly, even if they don’t do anything that would be considered grounds for divorce – you can still divorce them.

Even though the above is true, there is one fact that you must be aware of: your spouse cheating on you can, with the help of a good Barrington divorce lawyer, affect the amount of property you receive from the dissolution of your marriage.

If Your Spouse Cheats On You, Can You Obtain A Greater Portion Of Marital Property?

The answer to this question is “Yes.” But this doesn’t mean you will automatically be awarded a more significant portion of the marital property you and your spouse share if your spouse cheats on you.

You see, the state of Illinois relies on an “equitable distribution” model. And the essence of this model is quite simple: every spouse gets a fair share of the marital property that they own.

A “fair share” is not an equal share. Instead, a fair share is determined by the effort and energy that each spouse puts into the marriage and, in turn, their overall contribution to the marriage.

If your spouse has cheated on you, then that can make you entitled to more marital property. This is especially true if, while your spouse was cheating on you, you were raising the kids or doing something else that supported your family or your spouse.

You may be able to be awarded the money that your spouse spent on the person they were having an affair with.  This is called a dissipation claim.  A marriage is like a corporation, and if you use corporate money for personal expenses, you can be forced to pay it back to the corporation.  A marriage is very similar.  Using marital money to finance an affair can result in the Court ordering a disgorgement of funds to the innocent party equal to what was spent on the significant other that the spouse had during the marriage. 

Working with a lawyer will allow you to obtain the best marital property outcome.

What About Maintenance?

Some states use infidelity to determine maintenance.

But Illinois is not one of those states.

The length of a marriage is one of the most notable factors that determines maintenance in Illinois.

If a couple has been married for twenty years, then, within this scenario, they can be awarded maintenance indefinitely, depending on their financial status and the nature of their marriage.

On the other hand, if a couple has been married for less than twenty years, then they can be given maintenance for a shorter period.

The exact amount of maintenance you are awarded is dependent on your spouse’s financial situation, your financial situation, as well as the length of your marriage.

Get Qualified Legal Help Today

If you would like to obtain a divorce in Illinois, then Glasgow & Olsson is uniquely qualified to assist you.

When you need an attorney, experience matters.

Speak with one of our Barrington divorce lawyers at Glasgow & Olsson today, and we will help you obtain the best possible divorce outcome.