Photo of Karen Lavin

Rich or poor, young or old, marriage can be difficult for any couple in Illinois. Sometimes, the challenges of marriage become too much and it is best for the couple to file for divorce.

Superstars Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes have come to the decision to end their marriage. Holmes filed for divorce on June 28. The couple had been married for almost six years. They have one six-year-old daughter together.

Reportedly, the filing was a surprise to Cruise who was filming a movie in Iceland at the time. Many expected the divorce proceeding to turn ugly. People expected a long drawn out battle over child support, child custody and visitation. Others expected Cruises’ religion — Scientology — to play a big role throughout the process.

However, Holmes and Cruise surprised a lot of people by settling their divorce on July 9. While the exact details of the settlement are unknown and will not be disclosed by the parties, it is certain that the agreement includes child support and custody agreements, alimony payments and property division matters. Many familiar with the case believe that the couple’s daughter’s religious upbringing plays a central role in the agreement.

This deal was reached very quickly after around-the-clock negotiations between each party’s attorneys. Holmes was said to have hired three different law firms to help settle the case. Through their attorneys, the soon to be ex-couple made a statement asking for privacy while alluding that they were happy with the outcome.

The quick settlement between Cruise and Holmes shows that when a couple chooses to end their marriage, the process does not always have to be long, drawn out or messy. With the right help, planning and support, a couple can walk away from a divorce with an agreement that works for both of them.

Source: Chicago Tribune, “Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes wrap up speedy divorce,” Bob Tourtellotte, July 9, 2012