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Posted by attorney Andrew Ben Boyer

On behalf of Andrew Boyer PC on my blog Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Although a spouse's divorce filing can come suddenly and unexpectedly for those who believed themselves happily married, most Illinois residents know that the end of their marriage is near weeks, if not months or years, before their spouses actually filed a divorce petition. In many cases, both spouses are considering divorce, possibly even waiting for each other to make a move.

However, individuals who file before their husbands sometimes enjoy a number of advantages, such as help in asset division. While this does not mean prospective divorcé(e)s should rush to beat their husbands or wives to filing, but it makes it worthwhile for them to consider meeting with an attorney to discuss whether an expedient filing could help them during asset division or any other aspect of their divorces. In fact, simply consulting a lawyer before any documents are filed allows one to discuss their details with a qualified expert and begin preparing for the legal process of divorce. Likewise, one can collect any financial or legal documents, such as trusts, bank account states, or real estate titles, and have them on hand when the divorce begins.

Filing first can also protect one from having a spouse funnel away funds from a mutual account as a divorce sabotage. Divorcé(e)s who file before this occurs ensure that they have enough money to hire a competent attorney and financial adviser as well as pay for living expenses and any other costs that arise during their divorce.

The spouse who ultimately files for divorce first also enjoys the privilege of choosing where their divorce case will be heard in the event it goes to trial, as divorces are typically decided in the jurisdictions in which they are filed. This could provide a number of benefits depending on one's situation. For instance, an individual who spends equal time in Illinois and another state could choose to file in Illinois in order to take advantage of helpful laws or regulations regarding distribution of assets, child custody or spousal support.

Source: Forbes, " What Are The Financial And Legal Advantages Of Being First To File For Divorce?," Jeff Landers," March 26, 2013

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