Illinois’ Residency Requirement for Divorce Cases

It seems that our society is more mobile now than ever before. People frequently move to different cities and states to pursue careers, relationships, or just to explore and be part of a new community. Chicago is a popular place to live because it is a large city with many employment opportunities. Sometimes a person who has recently lived in another state asks us if he can file for divorce or dissolution of civil union in Chicago. Illinois divorce law has a residency requirement. One of the parties to the divorce case must reside in Illinois for at least ninety days before filing the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage/Civil Union or ninety days before the entry of the final judgment by the Court. If the person fulfilling the residency requirement has lived in Illinois for less than ninety days when he files the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage/Civil Union, he would need to wait to schedule the final court date until after he has lived in Illinois for ninety days. This waiting period likely would not apply if the other party has lived in Illinois for more than ninety days. Usually one or both of the parties to a divorce case meet the residency requirement before the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed. However, there may be a problem if only one of the parties resides in Illinois, and if he resides in Illinois on a temporary basis only. A person’s “residence” is the place he calls home; it is his permanent abode. If the party asking Illinois to grant the divorce knows that he will be moving out of Illinois in the near future, then he may not meet the residency requirement. If the other party lives in Illinois, then it is probably not an issue. However, if the other party does not live in Illinois, then Illinois may not have the power to award the divorce.

Recent Post

Illinois Child Support: A Comprehensive Guide

Navigating the complexities of child support in Illinois can be a daunting task for many parents. Whether you are going through a divorce or seeking to understand your obligations or entitlements, having accurate information and good legal counsel crucial. In this...

Key Differences Between Illinois Prenups and Post-nups

Illinois Premarital Agreements Most people have heard of premarital agreements (often referred to as "prenups").  The law defines prenups as contracts drafted and signed by a couple prior to their marriage.  Illinois has a statute, known as the Illinois Uniform...

Divorced Parents Disagree over Covid Vaccines

Now that Covid vaccines are approved for children that are 12 years of age and older, some Chicago divorced parents disagree over Covid vaccines. Specifically, some divorced parents disagree as to whether their children should receive the vaccine.  Some parents...

5 Common Divorce Myths You Might Believe Too

Too often, when contemplating divorce, people believe some common divorce myths that are seemingly based on common sense.  However, the facts are often different than what people think.  It can be detrimental to your case if you enter into divorce proceedings without...


If you are looking for legal advice and representation with an Illinois divorce, schedule a consultation with experienced Chicago divorce attorney, Tanya Witt, at (312) 500-5400 or

Representing men and women in Chicago divorce and child custody cases.

This blog does not constitute legal advice. Please consult with an attorney regarding your specific case.