In this article we explain case management conferences in Illinois divorce.
What is a Case Management Conference?
A case management conference is a meeting between the judge and the attorneys for both parties during which the judge will check in on the progress of the case, set deadlines, and plan for how the case will move toward trial.
When are Case Management Conferences Held in Illinois Divorce?
Supreme Court Rule 218(a) provides that the court must hold a case management conference within 35 days after the response to the divorce petition has been filed and, even if no response is on file, no later than 182 days after the filing of the divorce petition.
What to Expect from a Case Management Conference in an Illinois Divorce
At a case management conference the attorneys for each side and the judge will discuss the following:
- The issues involved in the divorce and the complexity of the case;
- Whether any of the issues can be settled or simplified and whether it makes sense to schedule a pretrial settlement conference;
- Scheduling any required family mediation if parenting issues are involved and whether mediation makes sense if it is not mandatory;
- Whether any facts can be agreed upon in order to avoid unnecessary presentation of evidence;
- The number of depositions that will be required;
- The number and expertise of witnesses that each side expects to call;
- Deadlines for the completion of written discovery and depositions; and
- Scheduling either a trial date or a subsequent case management conference.
The court may also use the case management conference to issue orders for temporary allocation of parenting time, temporary child support and spousal maintenance, or interim attorney fees.