tips on the divorce process

11 Divorce Strategies To Know Before Filing

Goldberg Jones Divorce, Divorce Process 1 Comment

The divorce process can be daunting. It can be a long, complicated affair. With a massive impact on your life moving forward, being prepared is in your best interest.

Strategies To Know Beforehand

Having strategies in place to deal with divorce and all the things that accompany it will be important to ensuring you make it through in one piece and on the best possible footing.

1) Know The Laws In Your State

Divorce laws vary a great deal from state to state. Residency requirements are different depending on where you live. Do you know if your state divides shared assets based on equitable distribution or community property statutes? How does your state approach child custody? What factors are taken into account when it comes to figuring out child support or spousal support? These are just a few things that can be different, so make sure you’re aware of the specific laws that apply to your case.

2) Prepare Ahead Of Time

Odds are, divorce isn’t a surprise. You’ve probably sensed it was coming or considered it for some time. Because of this, you have plenty of time to prepare and figure out what divorce strategies to use. Maybe this means talking to an attorney ahead of time, getting your finances in order, or figuring out exactly what you need and want from a settlement.

3) Save Up Money

This probably won’t come as a shock, but divorce can be expensive. Even in simple, uncontested divorces, it costs money to submit the paperwork. And from there the expenses only pile up.

Going to court, filing and responding to motions, child support, spousal support, all of these cost money.

Basically, every time you do anything, there are fees. One of your strategies should be to start saving early so you don’t get blindsided by unexpected costs.

4) Be Organized

Divorce is a mass of details. You have forms to fill out, appearances to make, property to divide, documents to hand over. Your calendar fills up fast, you have to share information with your spouse, and she has to share with you and your team. Making sure you have everything ordered and arranged may seem like a hassle at first, but it can turn out to be one of the most important divorce strategies you have.

5) Get Your Financial Records Together

An offshoot of being organized is having all of your financial records. The division of property has a huge impact on your economic future, so it’s important to prepare.

You’ll need to disclose all of your assets, including bank accounts, pensions, and significant pieces of property.

Catalog all debts, including student loans, mortgages, car payments, and credit card bills.

Splitting up the shared assets and debts can determine how you start the next phase of your life, so make sure to account for everything.

6) Take Stock Of Assets/Debts

Know as much as you can about the state of your collective finances.

  • How much do you make?
  • How much does your spouse earn?
  • What does she have in her name, what do you have in yours, and what’s attached to both of you?

Figure out where you owe money and which assets are most valuable. Examine old tax returns, find out about retirement funds, and learn everything there is to know. Financial strategies play a large part in your divorce.

7) Protect Your Credit

Getting divorced doesn’t automatically alter financial agreements you and your spouse entered into while married.

Home loans, car loans, anything with both of your names on it stays that way unless you change it.

Divorce agreements can stipulate your ex must make certain payments or refinance loans to remove your name. If that happens, great. But if not, it can negatively impact you and your credit. It never hurts to keep an eye on your credit to make sure nothing fishy is going on.

8) Strategies For The Kids

Divorce can be complicated enough as it is, but when there are kids, it gets even more complex. Emotions can become heated, and you’ll want to familiarize yourself with topics like how your state decides child custody and visitation, or how it calculates child support.

Beyond that, your children need your support during the process. This is an emotional time for them as well, and they require the same level of care during and after as before, perhaps now more than ever. Enacting parenting strategies and knowing they’re cared for is one less worry during an already stressful time.

9) Hire A Divorce Attorney

Those who want to take a do-it-yourself approach to ending their marriage have more resources now than ever before. But even the simplest, most straightforward cases can become twisted and tangled in short order. Hiring an experienced divorce attorney to help guide you through the process can be invaluable. This is a crazy, hectic time, and a calm, cool hand can suggest strategies, keep raging emotions in check, and steer you towards an optimal outcome.

10) Enlist Support

Ending a marriage is a huge change and may be the most chaotic, stressful time of your life. If you’re going to make it through intact, you need a support system in place. Knowing who you can rely on is important.

  • Who do you turn to for advice, both legal and personal?
  • For financial help?
  • Or even just to watch the kids while you meet with an attorney or appear in court?

You may enlist family, friends, or even support groups that offer strategies and advice for people in similar situations. Sometimes it’s just nice to be reminded you’re not alone.

11) Strategies For After Your Divorce Is Final

Down in the trenches, fighting the daily fight, it’s easy to lose sight of what comes next. Maybe you just want to get through this and put it behind you. Having strategies in place will help do just that.

  • With tax changes, child support payments, and possibly spousal support, your finances will be different. You living situation will likely change.
  • Depending on the custody arrangement, how much you see your kids may change. All of this and more needs to be addressed, and it’s never too early to plan.

Divorce represents a dramatic life change, and hopefully, it’s a shift in a positive direction. Having strategies in place ahead of time can help make the process go a smooth as possible.

Related Reading: How Will The Courts Treat Your Debt?
Related Reading: I Work, She Doesn’t: Do I Have to Pay Her Legal Fees?

Comments 1

  1. It makes a lot of sense why divorces aren’t usually a surprise. I only say that because of my aunt who is starting to seriously consider getting a divorce. It seems like it would be most helpful for her to consult with an attorney before taking action.

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