If you have reached the point in your marriage where you realize that you can’t continue and you’re ready to get a divorce, you need to make sure you plan the next few weeks and months carefully. Whether your spouse is on the same page, or they will contest the divorce, it is important to move forward with your plans wisely. The following are steps to take as you prepare to file for divorce.
Speak with An Attorney
Once you have decided that a divorce is in your future (or even if you are still just considering it) you will want to talk with an attorney. An attorney will help you through this challenging process by providing advice that can help to protect your finances, your relationship with your children, and much more. The sooner you talk to an attorney about a divorce, the more options you will have available, and the lower the chances of making a mistake that could impact your legal options.
Collect & Organize Financial Documents
One of the most challenging parts of any divorce is dividing up all the marital assets. Even if you and your spouse aren’t going to fight over different assets, it will still be challenging to get everything sorted out. To prepare for this process, you will want to start collecting and organizing all financial documents. Getting things like the deed of your home, titles of your vehicles, up to date account information for all your bank and credit card accounts, and much more will be very helpful. Since it may take time to get this documentation, it is good to start gathering it together as soon as possible.
Make Any Large Pre-Divorce Financial Decisions
Once you file for a divorce, the courts may not allow you to make major financial decisions until it is finalized. This is a step often taken to help prevent one spouse from attempting to cause financial problems for the other. If you need to buy a new car, or make other major purchases, now may be the right time to do it. It is critical, however, to talk with your attorney to ensure these decisions aren’t going to violate any laws or best practices.
Determine Living Conditions & Custody Arrangements
If you can work out who will be moving out of the family home, how child custody will work, and other important decisions ahead of time, it will make the whole process much easier. If your spouse is on the same page, this type of thing can be easily worked out before even filing for divorce. If not, make sure to talk to your attorney to determine your best course of action.
Finally, File for Divorce
Once you are ready, you will want to file the official paperwork with the court to start the process of a legal divorce. This paperwork will be handled by your attorney, and then served to your spouse. Our team can help you through every step of the divorce including the time leading up to filing, the actual filing, and the divorce case to its end. Please contact us to discuss your options today.