The number of people asking for divorce is going up in the US, and Illinois ranks high in this. Though, the state is legally bound to maintain a record of each and every divorce, and you are legally entitled to access it, but accessing the divorce record may not be as easy as obtaining any other record in Illinois. In the state, the divorce records are maintained at the county level where the divorce was actually granted.
Before even trying to access the record, you should know that while you can find out whether the person has been legally divorced or not, but you cannot know about the details like the reason for divorce, child custody, property issues, and others like this. The right to privacy of the divorced person will protect such information. However, as the state is also legally bound to share the information, it will share the divorce record with you subject to certain conditions.
What is the purpose of asking for the record? You must inform this to the authorities when you make that application. It could be because you want to verify the person's background. Perhaps you are getting married and want to be sure that the person has actually been divorced as he/she claims.
Illinois divorce records are maintained from January 1962. You need to contact the following office:
Division of Vital Records,
Illinois Department of Public Health,
605 West Jefferson Street,
Springfield, IL 62702-5097
Phone number: 217-782-6553
The state charges a fee of $5.00 that has to be paid by money order or check to the Public Health Department. The fee charged by the county varies. It depends on the details you can provide and the extent of search that has to be conducted. So, if you can provide details and correct information, you can fasten the process, and this will reduce your costs too.
When you make that application, send in the details like the name of the divorced person including the nickname if any, the likely year of divorce, the name of city/county if you know it, and others like this. Also, provide your personal details like your name, address, pin code, your relationship with the person, the purpose of wanting to access the record, and a copy of your photo ID proof.
You may send in your application to the state agency. You do not need to visit any office, call up or send a mail. You can search for the divorce record on the Internet as an alternative. The Internet provides plenty of options for you to gather information. This will be slightly costly. However, you can save a lot of time.
You may carry out a more extended search if you wish to obtain a copy of the case files, or the divorce decree or any other document on the divorce. You can get all these services at reasonable costs, and the process is also hassle-free.
To obtain copies of Illinois divorce decrees follow the instructions below:
Download the Illinois Application for Verification of Divorce Record form.
Fill out the form completely, including husband name, wife's maiden name, date and place of divorce, and your contact and mailing information. Provide a copy of your valid photo ID to send in with the form.
Once you have completed the form, you can either fax or mail the form. Be sure to include the fee of $5, which you can pay either by check, money order, or credit card. Keep in mind that if you fax your form, you can only pay via credit card, and any credit card payment will have an applicable $8.50 handling charge and a $19.50 UPS charge.
If you require further assistance, contact:
Illinois Department of Public Health
Division of Vital Records
925 East Ridgley Avenue
Springfield, IL 62702-2737
Fax: (217) 523-2648
Accessing Copies of Illinois Divorce Records
Divorce records in the state of Illinois are filed in the Circuit Court in the county the divorce takes place. All permanent divorce records are kept at the county Circuit Courts, and certified copies of divorce documents must be requested with them directly. However, the Illinois Division of Vital Records can issue a verification of a divorce from 1962 to the present.
Illinois Restrictions on Divorce Records
Divorce records are confidential in the state of Illinois. Only those whose names are on the divorce decree, or those persons directly related to those named on a divorce, may request a certified copy or verification with proper photo ID.
How To Obtain Certified Copies of Divorce Records
Certified copies of a divorce decree are available only through the Circuit Court in the county the divorce was filed. If you need a full certified copy, go to the Illinois Circuit Courts list to find the contact address you need.