10 Tips for Handling Your Divorce Case
No one ever plans to go through a divorce. For this reason, when people realize that their marital issues cannot be resolved, they typically have little to no knowledge of how to handle their case. Furthermore, the emotional stress of ending a relationship can cloud logic, allowing important details to slip through the cracks.
Consider these ten tips for handling your divorce and successfully starting the next chapter of your life.
Develop a strategy.
Like any legal matter, you need a clear strategy — a roadmap to reach your goals and protect your future. Developing an action plan with clear steps to follow helps you stay focused, avoid common pitfalls, and resolve all of your legal issues in a comprehensive way.
Don’t believe the myths.
There are countless myths that muddy the waters of divorce. Some say fathers are always at a disadvantage in child custody cases. Others claim you can only get spousal support in cases of infidelity. These are dangerous misconceptions, so be sure to get information from a credible source.
Understand state laws.
Divorce and family law varies from state-to-state. In North Carolina, you do not have to prove who is “at fault” to obtain a divorce. The state does however require at least one year of separation (living in different residences with no intention of reconciling) before filing.
Consider your children.
Child custody is one of the most complex components of divorce. You want what is best for your children; however, divorce can bring stress which often inhibits sound decision making. Reflect the unique needs that each parent fulfills before deciding how parenting responsibilities can be shared. When a child custody agreement cannot be reached, the judge will determine what is in the best interest of the child.
Gather financial records.
Staying organized can help you plan for a secure financial future. Gather records of your bank accounts, tax documents, loan and debt statements, as well as your household budget and expenses. Having a clear picture of what you and your spouse own and owe will keep the process moving. Having this information on hand early in the process will pay off down the road.
Avoid transferring assets.
Sometimes, people are tempted to hide money or assets during their divorce by temporarily transferring them to another person or account that their spouse cannot access. This is always a bad idea and can result in serious legal repercussions.
Know your options.
Every divorce case is different, but there are a number of options that can be used to settle your issues without going to court. These include arbitration, collaboration, mediation, and negotiation. Choosing one of these routes may save you both time and expense.
Be aware of the consequences.
When couples decide to end their marriage, they often neglect to consider how it will change their lives from a personal and legal perspective. From losing your current tax status to no longer having rights to certain property acquired during your marriage, the repercussions should always be considered. Weighing the costs may help you decide to work on your marriage and seek the assistance of a marriage counselor.
Create a post-divorce plan.
If not well planned, the aftermath of a divorce can wreak havoc on your life. Some struggle for years to regain financial security. Sound planning can help you enjoy the lifestyle you are accustomed to and continue working toward your long-term financial goals. Consider your future with the help of legal, mental health, and financial professionals.
Find a legal partner.
Even the most amicable divorce can be overwhelming. Finding a qualified attorney can save you a lot of headache and give you the confidence you need to move forward. A consultation with our divorce attorneys can help you understand your rights, determine your next steps and whether or not you need further legal advice. Even if you do not choose the divorce attorneys at Ward Black Law, we hope you’ll find someone who is skilled and passionate about helping people navigate the complexities of divorce and family law.