Can I file for divorce without an lawyer if I have been married for 10 years and have a child with my spouse?

UPDATED: May 22, 2012

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Can I file for divorce without an lawyer if I have been married for 10 years and have a child with my spouse?

I don’t have the money to have legal help but I want a divorce so that I can collect child support from my spouse. We have been separated for 4 years and he has given nothing in the way of support for the minor child.

Asked on May 22, 2012 under Family Law, Illinois


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation.  You can file yourself but things can get complicated with a child and support.  Generally speaking, each state has a way for you to file for temporary child support with out having to file for divorce as well.  In New York that can be done in Family Court.  In Illinois it may be the circuit court.  I would also file a motion to temporary custody as well.  Good luck. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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