How to Prepare for Divorce

Written By Alla Levin
June 18, 2021
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How to Prepare for Divorce

Sadly, divorce is very prevalent in society, but it’s something that can be managed quite effectively with the right advice and support. The most difficult part is the time leading up to your decision to file for divorce. Divorce counseling has helped many couples repair and deals with their difficulties in marriage.

However, when counseling fails, it may mean that you’ll have to split with your spouse permanently. A divorce attorney with years of experience can be of immense help, advising you and assisting you in creating a strategy to move on from your marriage.

How to prepare for divorce: what to look for in a divorce attorney

There are a great number of divorce attorneys out there who can easily be found on Google.  Take some time to do some research on your own, visit their website, and read their profiles. Then, pick out three attorneys, give each of them a call, and have a brief discussion about your situation.  You must find an attorney that you’re comfortable with, someone who can be a trusted advisor since you’ll be sharing very private details about your married life with them.  Your decision to hire a divorce attorney can only be made once you meet face to face.

No matter what type of lawyer you’re looking for, experience in the courtroom is important.  An experienced trial lawyer, who is well known, can facilitate an amicable resolution through not only the fear the other side may have of going to court against that law but also due to the creativity toward settlement solutions your attorney may have accumulated through their years of experience.  An amicable divorce is in the best interest of your kids, for you, and your pocketbook.

Your goal should be to end the marriage and move on without a long-drawn-out process that involves arguing the case in front of a judge.  The long-term damage resulting from emotional battles in the courtroom doesn’t end when the divorce decree is signed but can endure for years thereafter.

How to prepare for divorce: how to talk to your kids about divorce?how to talk to your kids about divorce

If your marriage is still a cordial type of situation, it’s best to break the news of your pending divorce by speaking to your kids together.  Emphasize that you both love them and the divorce in no way has to do with them or anything they’ve done.  You want to clarify that although some things may change, your love and care for them will not.  The main change affecting their lives will be two separate homes, instead of one, to love and care for them.

Suppose your marriage has been a contentious and combative one you might consider, after breaking the news to the kids, getting some counseling for them.  It’s well known that kids often blame themselves when their parents go through a divorce.  Counselling offers them a haven to talk about things.

Secure Your Bank Accounts and Email

When you are preparing for divorce, besides focusing on the kids, which is your top priority, family finances will be an area of concern.  If any of your accounts are under your name only, secure your access to these accounts by changing your password.  When it comes to joint accounts, leave those alone and monitor the activity.

If your spouse has filed for divorce, you’ll want to know if a temporary restraining order is in place enjoining certain activities related to these accounts.  It’s best to consult with a divorce attorney before you take any action removing funds or changing accounts.  Circumstances may require removing funds to pay for living expenses until an agreement can be reached or for attorney fees. However, understand that you will be required to account for how those funds were used if you’ve already removed funds. If you see any suspicious activity in your joint accounts, make a note of it and discuss it with your attorney.

Create a new email address if you share an email account and, under no circumstances, share your password with your spouse.  Your attorney may need to communicate with you via email, and you do not want your attorney-client privileged communications to be jeopardized.

Identify Your Assets and Discuss Them with Your Divorce AttorneyIdentify Your Assets and Discuss Them with Your Divorce Attorney

Within a marriage, there are two types of property, separate and community. Generally, separate property is items you owned before marriage, such as a vacation home, financial investments, cars, items gifted to you or inherited by you during the marriage.  Community property refers to the things acquired during the marriage.

In some marriages identifying your assets may be more difficult than you think; that’s why it’s best to speak to and retain an experienced board-certified divorce attorney.  For instance, you may not know that assets purchased with funds from an inheritance during a marriage are considered separate property.  In this situation, however, you have the burden of tracing this purchase back to the funds from the inheritance.

How to prepare for divorce: don’t move out of the marital home

If you want primary custody of the kids, you’ll want to stay in the marital home.  It’s critical to discuss your situation with a divorce lawyer so you can understand the ramifications of any decisions you make before you act on them.

If your kids haven’t finished school yet, it’s best to stay where you are.  Your primary concern should be the emotional well-being of your kids, keeping them in their school, in the neighborhood you live in, and on the same sports teams with their friends.  There is one caveat to this, and that is the safety of you and your children. If there is a danger issue involving your spouse, for the safety of you and your children, get out if necessary and then call an attorney to discuss your situation with him or her.

A divorce is a life-changing event that, unfortunately, many couples end up going through. However, you can easily lessen the impact of divorce on your life and your kid’s lives if you have an amicable divorce and keep a cordial relationship with your former spouse.

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