Couples in Illinois who are planning to divorce might think that the case will be heard on that basis with the court allowing it to move forward, assessing the circumstances and making decisions based on the evidence. However, that is not always the case immediately. In some situations, the court will determine that the marriage can be salvaged. With that, there can be an order for the parties to take part in a court-ordered "conciliation" conference.
For couples who are planning a divorce or harbor a belief that there is a chance to save the marriage, it is important to understand the law in these cases. The court can decide on its own that the marriage can be saved and order the conciliation conference. This can also be done if one spouse requests that there be a conciliation conference. The conciliation conference and a counseling session will be held at a service location in that judicial district or another appropriate facility.
During the conciliation conference, any facts that are learned from it cannot be used if the attempts at reconciliation fail and the couple moves forward with a divorce. In other words, no evidence will be added to the case based on what is heard during the confines of the conference. The parties can allow this information to be part of the record if the wish to do so. If there is good cause, the court can decide there can be no conciliation or other method that mandates the parties meet and confer.
With the many issues that come up in a divorce case, including spousal support, child support, property division, child custody and more, people might be unaware that there could be an order that they take part in a conciliation conference. If the couple believes it might help, it may be a worthwhile attempt. For others who are set on ending the marriage and have made the decision, it is important to understand the applicable family law.