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Chicago Divorce Rate Expected to Spike Further

As couples began to emerge from quarantine in China, the divorce rate spiked at an unprecedented rate. Spending days and weeks on end in isolation with your spouse can test the limits of any marriage; in talking to many couples and clients in Chicago, constant fighting at home during this “shelter-in-place” time seems to be a regular occurrence along with navigating the already-tricky balance of roles within the household (such as cooking, cleaning, childcare). The items can often feel trivial, but can lead to significant resentment, conflict, grudges and fights. If you add in the fact that many employers are expecting their employees to continue to work at home to keep businesses in motion, you can imagine and may even be experiencing this recipe for disaster. Juggling a ‘work-home’ balance can be overwhelming for many in regular circumstances, but the impact of this on many families cannot go unnoticed as a huge contributing factor of concern for the Chicago divorce rate to spike in the many months to follow.
We should all be paying close attention to what is happening in China, as it is expected to be a similar outcome in the United States. The record-high number of divorce filings since the end of the Chinese-mandated quarantine led to backlogs at government offices.

The Chicago divorce lawyers at WARD FAMILY LAW, LLC are experienced in e-filing and navigating the county courthouses; we continue to stay on top of the daily orders and notices being issues as it relates to filings and cases. In Chicago, we are already experiencing an increase in divorce inquiries and e-filings – the financial uncertainty, the close quarters with a spouse, in conjunction with the many issues that most couples were already trying to address in their strained marriages has proven to be too much. The county courts are accepting e-filings, which allows the Chicago divorce attorneys at WARD FAMILY LAW, LLC to proceed with initiating and e-filing the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, even during the pandemic. Many of our clients are finding that the significant amount of time at home has allowed them to prepare, including organizing their finances, tax returns and other important information to proceed with a divorce filing. While it may not be ideal to be quarantined with your spouse during a dissolution of marriage proceeding, many clients find that not much has changed for them since initiating the action – except of the peace of mind knowing that they are moving forward with something that they intended to do, even if the timing is not ideal.

Even when the pandemic abates, life may return to a form of normalcy but the psychological and economic impact remains to be seen, but it is expected to last for months. For those on the other end of the spectrum, we are seeing a rise in preparation of Premarital Agreements for those contemplating or re-scheduling their weddings.

No matter what your family or matrimonial legal questions or concerns may be, feel free to reach out to the Chicago team of WARD FAMILY LAW, LLC for services including litigation, mediation, collaborative law, guardian ad litem, child representative, financial analysis, support calculations, parentage, premarital and postnuptial agreements, contested and uncontested divorce.
We also offer telephone and video conferencing services to allow clients to communicate confidentially with our team. To find out more about our divorce, matrimonial or any other family law services, please contact me via email at jward@wardfamilylawchicago.com to schedule a time to talk.

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