Considerations Before Filing for Divorce / by Cassandra Hearn

Divorce is a chaotic time, and the beginning of the process even more so. Taking time to properly prepare and take careful stock of your situation before filing for divorce can help to reduce stress and the chaos. There are some important considerations that any spouse should take into account before taking the first step.

First, you need to think about your goals. Is your goal to obtain spousal support? Primary custody?  Keeping the marital residence?  Just get it over with as quickly as possible?  Whatever you goals happen to be, it is be helpful to make a list of priorities. Making lists such as these throughout your divorce process can help you keep your thoughts in order but also can help you keep sight of your goals. The landscape can shift during a divorce case, and this can assist with keeping you focus.

Second, carefully examine your marital financial situation. Review your assets and your debts to the best of your ability. Even if you do not have access to all of the financial information, gathering together as much information as you can find will be very helpful. Your attorney will be able to obtain additional information for you. However, a rough understanding on what financial state you are in will greatly assist you and your attorney when discussing your goals and strategy.

Third, you need to consider the children of the marriage. Your children will also be greatly affected by the decision to divorce. You need to consider what is best for them, in terms of custody, school, visitation, continued contact with friends and family, and other issues that will impact their day-to-day lives. You need to consider the fact that the longer the divorce case lasts, the rougher it may be not only on you, but also on your children. Accordingly, every effort should be made to reach a realistic and beneficial parenting plan that is tailored to your children’s best interest.

Finally, consider your immediate and long-term future. You will need to consider how you are going to make sure you can make ends meet in the long run, considering that divorce is often financially difficult on both spouses. Especially if you have traditionally been the stay-at-home parent, careful consideration needs to be given to how you will make a living in the days to come.

There are many issues that need careful consideration before filing for divorce. We have helped many clients think about these and many other considerations before starting their case. Call us today at (619) 800-0384 and we can discuss your situation.