No one thinks that they are going to get divorced when they say I do. You didn’t, and yet here you are.
Maybe you are just beginning to research the process, or maybe you have made the decision and are not yet certain about where to begin.
Approaching your divorce with as many facts as possible about the legal process won’t make the divorce easy, but may ease the transition.
Here is what to know before starting the divorce process.
1. Divorces have a huge financial component. The basic steps in a divorce related to your finances include:
- Property division. You will divide what you owned or owed together as a couple. This will include real estate, finances, and valuable stuff you own.
- Division of debts. If you and your spouse have loans, credit card debt, or outstanding taxes owed, this will be divided in the divorce.
- Parenting agreements, including child custody and support if you have children
- Alimony and spousal support if it applies in your situation.
2. Divorces don’t always have to go to court. Falling into two categories, divorce can be contested or uncontested. If you and your spouse cannot decide how to divide your property and co-parent, it is considered contested and often goes to court.
Maybe you come to a peaceful agreement beforehand. Maybe your spouse is completely out of the picture. In these cases, you don’t have to go to court and can pursue an uncontested divorce.
3. There is a conflict resolution element to the divorce process – this can include legal mediation. Some states require mediation, but you can always ask for it if you feel it’s best for your sitatuoin.
4. Discussing your situation with a lawyer can help you learn the best way forward for you. Everyone’s story is different, and there is no one best solution for every couple.
Even if you have seen family members or friends go through a divorce, yours is an unknown. You may feel stressed and overwhelmed. A good family law attorney can help you identify your options and navigate the process as smoothly as possible.