GENERAL DIVORCE INFORMATION
A dissolution of marriage (commonly referred to as a divorce) is a serious legal step which should only be taken after careful and considerable thought. It is in the best interests of each of the parties to consult an attorney regarding a dissolution of marriage. When a judgment of dissolution of marriage (divorce) is entered it permanently settles all financial rights arising out of your marriage, including the right to property held in the name of your spouse. A judgment entered in a dissolution proceeding is final. You will not be able to appeal from the judgment unless you challenge it within thirty (30) days of entry or unless you file a proper pleading within two (2) years and can prove fraud, duress, or other legally sufficient grounds to set aside a judgment as provided by law.
If you have children under the age of 18, you are required to enroll in the Children First Program before your judgment can be entered. To sign up for this program, call 618-251-6214. Children First Information.
The fee to file a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage (Civil Union) is $314.00. The other party in the case will have to pay an answer fee of $189.00 for a total of $503.00.
Although deputy clerks in the Circuit Clerk’s office can answer general informational questions regarding forms and procedures, state law prohibits any court personnel from providing legal counseling to any litigant. Circuit Clerk employees may not give legal advice. Anyone in need of such advice should consult an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, you may seek assistance from the Legal Self-Help Center in the Law Library of the Madison County Courthouse or Illinois Legal Aid.
You should not rely exclusively on the information at this site; it is intended only to provide general filing information and direction to the necessary case filing forms. Please click here to access forms and further information.