Our Chicago Family Law Lawyers Are Your Trusted Advocates
Led by Chicago family law attorney Jonathan Merel, our family law firm has been serving the Chicagoland area since 2009. We are strong problem-solvers who can implement effective solutions to help you reach your goals.
Whether you are filing for divorce, negotiating a child custody arrangement, or seeking to establish paternity, we know that your case is delicate and emotional. With your family’s future at stake, you deserve to work with a divorce attorney in Chicago who is ready to fight for you while remaining compassionate of your situation.
You will find this caliber of legal representation at the Law Offices of Jonathan Merel, P.C. Regardless of the circumstances of your relationship with your spouse or partner, our family law office is ready and able to help. We have handled it all, from simple and straightforward divorces resolved outside of court to extremely contentious divorces that require strategic litigation.
When to Hire a Family Lawyer in Chicago
Family law matters involve any legal dispute related to marriage and family. Since they involve people you love, it is important to get the advocacy of a family lawyer right away – one who understands the personal nature of your situation and treats your case with the care and urgency it deserves.
Are you looking to get a divorce? Do you need to fight for custody of your children? Do you need legal representation in a child or spousal support case? All of these issues and more will require the representation of a Chicago family lawyer. Call the Law Offices of Jonathan Merel, P.C. today to speak with a family law attorney about your options.
How to File for Divorce in Illinois
To get a divorce in Illinois, you must file a “Petition for Dissolution of Marriage.” Once this document has been filed, you will have to serve the other party with divorce papers. The receiving party must then file a response.
After the petition and response, both partners may retain their own attorney to represent them through divorce proceedings. It is possible to represent yourself; however, divorce is not a simple legal process. Having a divorce lawyer on your side can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case.
Our Chicago divorce attorneys are also experienced in:
I Was Served Divorce Papers. Now What?
In order to be officially served divorce papers a legally authorized individual in Illinois must serve them upon you; this is called service of process. Typically a county sheriff or an authorized private individual (special process server) will serve individuals with divorce papers (Petition for Dissolution of Marriage) along with a court Summons by simply handing the papers to you (or a member of your household).
It's important to know that time is of the essence. As the Respondent (the party served with the divorce papers) in an Illinois divorce, you will have 30 days to file an Answer to the petition and file your Appearance.
Upon being served divorce papers, it's in your best interests to hire an experienced Chicago family law attorney. Your lawyer will handle all of the court filings, communication with the opposing counsel, collecting and presenting your financial information and advising you on the appropriate steps to take as your case proceeds.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Divorce in Illinois?
It is in your best interests to hire a divorce attorney in Chicago due to the complex nature of divorces in general. This is especially true if your spouse hires a divorce lawyer, because the success rate of pro se litigants (individuals representing themselves) against an attorney is very low. The average divorce requires the drafting of numerous legal documents which, if not completed properly, can be devastating to the litigant.
Once they find an attorney you are comfortable with, many litigants feel like a weight has been lifted from their shoulders, since they have an experienced professional to advocate on their behalf.
No matter what type of divorce you are seeking, rest assured that our family law firm has the knowledge and skill to represent you. Get in touch with our team!