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Home arrow Rules and Orders arrow General Orders arrow 4. Family Division arrow 4.08 Procedure for Virtual Hearings - Family Division
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4.08 Procedure for Virtual Hearings - Family Division Print E-mail

A. Procedure for Scheduling a Case (applicable to all cases):

To the extent possible, the Family Division intends to use remote hearing procedures similar to those followed for in-person hearings.  The Division sets the following procedure for virtual hearings.  This procedure applies to attorneys and Self-Represented Litigants (SRL).

1.  Counsel or Self-Represented Litigant (SRL) files a Motion and obtains a Court date with the Clerk of the Court, following the procedure set forth at More information on Motions and Motion forms can be found at

2.  The moving party provides notice of the virtual hearing date and time, with the Meeting ID, to the other party(ies).

3.  If an opposing party files a response to the Motion with the Clerk, they shall provide a copy of the response and provide notice to the other party(ies).

4.  Any counsel or SRL may forward the virtual invitation and/or Meeting ID to attorneys of record, parties of record and necessary witnesses only. 

5.  Any Court documents, proposed orders or exhibits required for the hearing shall be exchanged between the parties, with copies to the Court, no later than three business days before the virtual hearing. Parties may submit a copy to the Court in one of two ways: 1) a hard copy delivered care of Trial Court Administration, or 2) e-filed with the Clerk.  When any proposed order, Court document or exhibit is e-filed, the proposed order, Court document or exhibit must be named “Virtual Hearing Exhibit.”

6.   Counsel, SRL, parties and witnesses attending a virtual hearing will be admitted to a virtual waiting room until the case is called.  During this time the Court may be hearing other cases also set for virtual hearings.  Witnesses will remain in the waiting room until they are called to testify.  The Court is limiting the number of cases set for virtual hearings in order to reduce waiting time.


B. Required Proposed Orders and Court Documents for Agreed Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage

All proposed orders and court documents must be exchanged and submitted 3 days in advance of the Virtual Court Proceeding. In Winnebago County, it should be submitted as one packet, and in the order specified below. When e-filing the documents in Boone County, the documents should be submitted individually. In both Counties include the words “Virtual Exhibit” in the document name to ensure proper routing.

1.  Proposed Judgment for Dissolution of Marriage* Required for all cases.

2.  Certificate of Dissolution of Marriage* (4 Copies, each labeled to designate the appropriate entity that will be receiving the document).  Required for all cases.

3.  Marital Settlement Agreement.  Optional document.  Not required.

4.  Proposed Parenting Plan*  Required for all cases with children under 18.

5.  Order of Support.*  Required in all cases where maintenance or child support is ordered.

6.  Child Support worksheet.  Required in all cases where there are children under 18 or still in high school.  Parties who have children under 18, or 18 years old and still in high school, must run child support calculations following Illinois child support guidelines.  This child support is based on the income of both parents.  Parties can calculate Illinois guideline child support at the following website:  After entering the required information, at the bottom of the screen, click the “calculate” tab.  This will give the estimated child support guideline amount.  After clicking “calculate” there will be a tab marked “worksheet.”  Click this tab to get a chart containing the child support calculation.  Print the worksheet and submit it as a Virtual Exhibit.  This must be done even if the parties do not want the Judge to enter a child support order, or if they want the Judge to set child support lower than what the guidelines require.  The Judge must know what Illinois guideline child support requires before the Judge can decide to enter an order for a lower (or higher) amount than required. Parties also can calculate child support by referring to 750 ILCS 5/505(a)(1) or by using other child support calculation software programs.

7.  Maintenance worksheet.  Required in all cases where maintenance is ordered.  When maintenance will be ordered, the parties must provide a worksheet calculating the amount of maintenance and duration of maintenance required under Illinois statutory guidelines.  This must be done even if the parties want the Judge to order maintenance higher or lower than what the guidelines require.   Parties can calculate maintenance by referring to 750 ILCS 5/504(b-1)(1) or by using maintenance calculation software programs.

8.  PACT Certificates.  Required in all cases where there are children under 18.  Parents with children under 18 must complete the PACT Program.  Parents can attend PACT online during the coronavirus crisis.  Contact PACT at (815)877-7228 or Proof of completion must be filed before the hearing.  The PACT Program usually files proof of attendance with the Clerk.  However, parties must check to make sure the certificate was filed.  If proof of PACT attendance was not filed, the parties must submit the Certificate of Completion as a Virtual Exhibit.

9.  Qualified Domestic Relations Order(s).  Optional document.  Not required.

*Forms are available at the Circuit Clerk’s Office: Or

BOTH PARTIES MUST BE APPEAR in the Virtual Courtroom at the date and time provided by the Circuit Clerk’s Office, either individually or by an attorney.  At the present time, the Court will not enter a Dissolution Judgment in a virtual hearing when a party fails to appear or is in default.  ALL PROPOSED ORDERS, COURT DOCUMENTS AND EXHIBITS MUST BE PREPARED AND SUBMITTED AT LEAST THREE BUSINESS DAYS IN ADVANCE IN THE MANNER STATED IN THIS ORDER.


Version 05/27/2020 

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