It comes as no surprise that many individuals contemplating divorce struggle with the final decision. Some even contemplate divorce for years before ever speaking with an attorney.
When considering divorce, there are several steps you can take to help lessen the burden of such a difficult decision.
#1 Protect Your Children
Every parent wants what is best for their children; this may mean separation or divorce for some families. You can help your children by maintaining a regular routine when contemplating divorce. Continue participating in normal school activities, create a schedule for each parent to spend time with the kids, and avoid belittling or criticizing your spouse in front of the children.
#2 Start Saving
In the event your partner moves out, they may stop paying household bills. While you may be entitled to support, you will need a way to keep up with household expenses until the court can issue financial support orders. Building up savings will help make the process of separation and supporting two households easier in the long run.
#3 Know What Your Partner Makes
If you don’t already understand your partner’s financial earnings, now is the time to dig a little deeper. Have a look at joint accounts to monitor cash flow coming in over the last several months.
#4 Examine Your Credit History
In addition to understanding what your spouse earns, it’s important to review debt and credit scores. If you do not currently have accounts in your name only, find out if you qualify for one. The sooner you establish your credit, the better off you will be financially. If you have poor credit, try paying creditors to boost your own credit score prior to finalizing a divorce.
#5 Look at the Household Budget
Document household expenses such as monthly utility bills, mortgage payments, and other house costs for the last year. This will help you determine a monthly budget to figure out what you can afford in the future.
#6 Inventory Belongings
Build a list of all valuable assets such as vehicles, real estate holdings, jewelry, artwork, etc. Everything of value will need to be accounted for during a divorce for financial review. Most assets will be considered marital property and go towards equitable division, so you don’t want anything left out.
#7 Make Copies of Documents
Obtain and copy all financial documents, including tax returns, insurance policies, investment and credit card statements, retirement plan holdings, and so on. Having easy access to this documentation in the future will help make the divorce process run more smoothly.
#8 Contact an Attorney
Working with a trusted divorce lawyer from the start can help alleviate some stress associated with divorce litigation. Contact our office today to discuss your situation and create a plan for moving forward with your divorce. We’re here to help answer questions you have about child and spousal support, the divorce process, and more.