Professional athletes often appear to be in the media on a regular basis, although not always for a great play on the field. While lately that focus has narrowed in on issues of domestic abuse, a more prevalent issue is the divorce rate for professional athletes in Illinois and across the United States. These men and women experience divorce at a rate more than 50 percent higher than the rest of America.

There may be many different factors that play into a professional athlete’s decision to divorce. When an individual spends a large amount of time on the road, he or she may not be spending as much time with his or her spouse as might be otherwise necessary. Rampant issues of infidelity and even money can also put undue stress on a marriage.

Star athlete divorces may also end up being fairly expensive for those involved. Following professional golfer Tiger Woods’ divorce, he had to pay his ex-wife $100 million. Greg Norman, another golf pro, actually had to head back to court three years after his divorce, on his ex-wife’s claim that he had failed to make over $66,000 in alimony payments.

Some Illinois couples are likely familiar with the role that issues such as infidelity and time apart can play in a divorce. Similarly, dealing with alimony during a divorce settlement can be a common for divorcees. When an individual suspects that mutual negotiation is not leading to the amount of alimony to which he or she believes he or she is entitled, a third-party mediator is often effective for providing an impartial suggestion. However, when significant assets are involved that may lead to a substantial amount of alimony, it may be necessary to proceed through the courts where a judge will issue a final decision on the matter.

Source: Forbes, “Divorce, Not Domestic Violence, Is Biggest Issue At Home For Professional Athletes”, David Lariviere, Aug. 15, 2014