Things to Consider Before Filing for Divorce
July 22, 2021
Divorce is an emotional process for all involved, and as a result, it can result in a lot of emotional decisions for everyone. But as anyone who has gone through a divorce can tell you, there are a lot of things to consider before you actually go ahead with the divorce, considerations that will make a huge difference in how the divorce proceedings ultimately end up. It’s not as simple as breaking up with your partner and is going to inevitably involve huge life changes including anxiety. So, before you go straight into filing for divorce, there are things you need to know that will not only help the process move along more smoothly but also help you deal with the process better.
Things to Take into Consideration Before You File for Divorce
Divorce is obviously not something that you should be rushing into, especially given how far-reaching the consequences for all parties may be. The first thing to do before you begin the divorce process is to figure out if divorce is really the right answer for you to take. There are many specific reasons to seek a divorce, and some are more serious than others. However, that is not to say that people getting a divorce shouldn’t be able to do so if they do not have a “good enough reason.” Honestly, no longer being in love with your spouse is a good enough reason to get a divorce. That being said, some reasons for divorce are not only more serious but may also be more pressing. Other situations may be more amiable, and thus, there may be wiggle room in terms of coming to terms with saving the relationship. But if it is not amicable, and attempts to save the relationship fail, the next step is to plan for the divorce.
See, going through a divorce is both emotionally and financially taxing, and as such, you need to make sure you are ready to deal with both of these costs. When it comes to finances, you need to know exactly how much money you have, how much money you can afford to put into this case, and how much money you can expect to have once you have come out of the other side of the tunnel. You also need to be mindful of the debts that you are responsible for, the debts your spouse is responsible for, and the debts that the two of you share. Debts are a tricky beast, after all, so the last thing you want is for debts to rear their ugly head at the worst possible moment. You also need to be sure that you will have a place to live once you file for divorce. Divorce may be a nice out of an unhappy marriage but being homeless is not. Depending on the circumstances of both parties in the divorce, you may end up keeping the house. For example, if you are the primary caregiver of the children and can afford to keep the house, you may find yourself not having to find a new place to live at all. But you should definitely anticipate any reasonable possibility. You should have proof of income for both you and your spouse, as it will be vital evidence for you in the divorce to establish your standing. If one or both of you are self-employed, this will be a little more complicated.
Once you have determined that you can actually go through with this divorce without having the world fall out from under you, that is when you should determine whether you even need to procure the services of a divorce lawyer in the first place. In a lot of divorce cases, there is no need to worry about lawyers. This is especially true if there is a mutual desire to divorce, where ideally, there is not much dispute over things like child custody, housing, distribution of assets, and more. Unfortunately, not every divorce case is going to go as well as that; as such, that is where a divorce lawyer comes in. If this simply cannot be handled amicably, your best option is to pursue the services of a quality, experienced divorce lawyer, such as one of the family law attorneys at The Cossitt Law Firm. When searching for a lawyer, there are a number of different factors you need to take into account. For one, you need to make sure that the divorce lawyer fits your budget. The last thing you want to do when you hire the services of a divorce attorney finds that you spent way more money than you can really afford to have spent.
Also, it is worth reading about: Documents Needed to File for Divorce!
One of the key things to look for in a divorce attorney who knows how to get things settled as quickly as possible, but also one who can handle things if they cannot be settled. Most divorces can be settled in one way or another, depending on how amicable your spouse is to the negotiations. Unfortunately, some spouses may not be willing to give up what you are asking them to give up, or even fight you in the divorce out of spite, especially if they are not themselves interested in making you are leaving the relationship easy for you to do. Your lawyer will be able to ensure that your spouse will not be able to get away with such shenanigans, and they will fight diligently to properly represent your interests.
There are going to be a lot of disputes involved in a contentious divorce, and as such, you should be sure to have it figured out what you own, as well as have proof of this if your spouse decides to lay claim to things that you own. Homes and vehicles, when they are distributed between the two of you, should reasonably split up equitably. Basically, split up in such a way that doesn’t leave people high and dry.
Other assets will come into dispute, and your lawyer can help you determine things surrounding this. You should also ensure that you establish your own credit, as once you split off, you are going to need it to get a lot of things done as a newly single person. It’s a bit of the wild west for you, no sense in letting your credit be wild. If you do not have credit under your own name, it may be worthwhile for you to establish credit before you go forward with the divorce, just to make sure that you don’t have it bite you in the butt. You should also make sure that you manage your joint bank accounts properly. If you have one with your spouse, the last thing you want to have happened is for your spouse to, out of spite, spend the money. Because it’s a joint bank account, it is hard to demonstrate malice in this, and thus you may not be able to recover the money they took from it.
Thus, the best way to go about this is to open your own bank account and take out half of the amount in it, just to ensure that your assets are protected. It can get even harrier when it comes to joint credit accounts, so make sure that you close these down before the divorce, as a malicious spouse can do quite a lot of damage.