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. If you have any questions about filing for divorce in Chicago, call Chicago divorce attorneys The Witt Law Firm, P.C. at (312) 948-9884 or email The above blog post does not constitute legal advice. Please discuss your specific rights with an attorney.