Making an adult decision is sometimes the most difficult because sooner rather than later, you will have to face reality.
Divorce is a grown-up (adult) decision, and parents should take responsibility for their own choices. You need to own your decision to stay together (or not). If you’re thinking about getting a divorce and want to know what happens next, there are a few things to consider. A divorce is really three lawsuits involving the divorce, property and debts, and children. If you have made up your mind and decide to divorce, it’s best to have a plan before you start the divorce process.
Step 1: Prepare an assessment of your overall situation – income, expenses, housing, children
In the beginning, you will have more questions than answers. In a lot of ways, marriage is a business partnership, but with much more at stake. Marriage often involves other family law issues such as children. Unless there is a prenuptial agreement dividing up assets and debts, divorce can be expensive and convoluted. And then there are the children.
Should you stay together for the children’s sake? This is a huge question that most parents who are considering a separation ask themselves — and each other. Research on staying together for the children suggests that children do better after separation from a high-conflict marriage. If you have older children, consider talking with them in advance of making big changes. Keeping your “children first” policy both in your own parenting and in working with your children’s other parent is very important to the divorce process. Remember, at the end of the day, your chief role is to be the parent.
Step 2: Ask a divorce attorney about the details
Before your initial consultation with an attorney, you should have some ideas of what the process will be like in your specific case and have a basic understanding of the different kinds of divorce – uncontested divorce vs. contested divorce. It’s important to understand that you will be actively involved in the divorce process. This is not a situation where you can drop off your paperwork and then never think about it again.
It’s your life that is being transformed and you will be involved in every step of your divorce case. Therefore, it is important that you be totally honest with the attorney from the start and respond timely with requests for documents and information. Being truthful with your lawyer will help you avoid problems and ultimately save time and money.
Your Best Resource
The attorney-client privilege applies to the first consultation and beyond, so you can feel safe sharing your concerns from the start. Never assume that an asset is protected or that you do not need to disclose information to your attorney. Share everything and your attorney will advise you on the best steps to take. After the consultation, you should have a good idea about the issues in your divorce case, what the divorce process involves, and a general idea what it will cost in your case.
No matter if you are ready to file for divorce today or if you are not sure, you can take your time and talk to an attorney and get a game plan in place that works best for you and your situation.
GET LEGAL HELP WITH YOUR DIVORCE
Our attorneys at C.E. Borman & Associates can help you make important decisions about divorce and child custody as well as help with negotiating a fair settlement. Call for an appointment today.