WOODSTOCK – McHenry County has been awarded a $15,000 grant to create a program that will help streamline divorce cases.
The McHenry County Judicial Circuit will use the money awarded by the Illinois Supreme Court’s Access to Justice Commission to find attorneys for people seeking representation in divorce cases, according to a news release from the McHenry County Court Administration Office.
The county’s proposed Early Resolution Program aims to resolve problems and paperwork during monthly scheduled “problem-solving” sessions. It is expected to reduce costs, legal steps and the number of post-disposition hearings, according to the release.
In Illinois, problem-solving courts often involve more frequent interaction between the court and people involved and less formal court procedures, according to the Illinois Supreme Court.
To qualify for the county’s program, both parties must be self-represented, have no children, no complex marital assets or debts, no pending orders of protection and no pending domestic violence cases, according to the release.
In cases that meet the criteria, both sides will be sent a notice that their case has been selected, along with the location and date of their session and a brochure outlining the program.
The court will work with local legal aid centers and members of the local Bar Association to find attorneys willing to help during monthly scheduled sessions at the McHenry County Government Center.
In some cases, parties could receive a judgment on the same day as their session, according to the release.