What to Expect at a DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference

Posted by Erin Birt | Mar 03, 2019 | 0 Comments

A contested DuPage County Divorce can last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years or more in the court system.  In an earlier post, I highlighted Tips for Your Final Divorce Hearing, but what if you need help getting to your final divorce hearing?  By hiring DuPage County Divorce Attorney Erin Birt you can expedite your contested DuPage County Divorce by formally requesting a DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference with the Court. Therefore, this post will focus on what to expect at a DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference and how it can ultimately help you maximize your legal investment and end your divorce.

DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference: Video

In the video below, I discuss what to expect at a DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference and what you need to formally request a Divorce Pretrial Conference with the Court.

DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference: DuPage County Local Court Rules

DuPage County Local Court Rules allow for a Pretrial Conference prior to trial.  Below are the pertinent local court rules followed by DuPage County Divorce Attorneys and Divorce Courts.


(a) A case may be set for a pre-trial conference at the discretion of the trial judge. If a case set for pre-trial is settled or disposed of prior to its scheduled pre-trial conference date, the attorneys are directed to advise the judge in advance so that said appointed time may be used to accommodate the hearing of other cases. Failure of attorneys to comply may result in the imposition of sanctions.

(b) Litigants must be advised of any pre-trial conference date by their attorneys. Litigants need not appear, but must be available for consultation with their attorneys by phone during the pre-trial conference. If the attorneys fail to appear for an appointed pre-trial conference, the pre-trial will be stricken and the case may be subject to dismissal and the attorney may be subject to sanctions. The Court may preclude any further pre-trial conferences.

If you wish to set a pretrial conference in your matter, retain your Divorce Attorney early.  The Court will expect the Pretrial Memorandum in advance of the set date and the memorandum must identify all assets, debts, and liabilities for the Court to consider in its recommendations for settlement.

DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference: What to Expect

Typically, a Pretrial Conference can be set by agreement of the attorneys, recommendation of the Court, or by motion of an attorney.  A DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference, which is held in the Judge's private chambers, will cover:

  1. Review of the Pretrial Memorandum;
  2. Areas of Agreement between the parties, if any;
  3. Areas of Disagreements between the parties;
  4. Arguments of Spouse 1 Divorce Attorney;
  5. Arguments of Spouse 2 Divorce Attorney;
  6. Any remaining discovery issues that need to be initiated or completed;
  7. The Judge's Recommendations for settlement of all issues.

The Judge typically will keep notes of the Court's Pretrial Conference Recommendations, and thus the Judge will remember the Court's Pretrial Conference Recommendations throughout the remainder of the case.  Therefore, the DuPage County Divorce Pretrial Conference is one of the most critical and important parts of the contested divorce.  It is where you should work hardest with your divorce attorney to present the best arguments to the Court.  A bad Pretrial Conference outcome can be the hardest legal hurdle to overcome and it is best to approach the Pretrial Conference with the same level of preparedness as you would a divorce trial.

About the Author

Erin Birt

Since 2003, Erin N. Birt, J.D., CADC has focused her practice on parenting time, divorce, mediation, and substance abuse issues. Ms. Birt's unique background in both family law and addictions counseling help her clients successfully navigate the complex issues of coparenting and divorce. Ms. Birt also devotes her time to presenting at continuing education seminars for attorneys, mediators, and counselors.


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Birt Family Law is the family centered law and mediation practice with a focus on Restorative Divorce; offering creative and supportive legal and mediation solutions with one goal: keeping the separating family out of court and working together towards a positive resolution.

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