Posted on: 9 March 2016
A divorce can be a very emotional process, and in some cases, a lot of anger and resentment can be present on both sides. But when it comes to the dissolution of a marriage, it is important to try to remain level-headed and rational. Being organized and thinking clearly can help ensure that the divorce proceeds smoothly and that you have a plan for living life as a single person. If you believe that a divorce is in the near future, take the following steps:
Consult a Divorce Attorney
Having an attorney is not a requirement when getting divorced, but having one is in your best interest. Before filing for divorce, it is worth your time to meet with several lawyers to explain your situation. A divorce attorney can hep you understand your options and explain what you can expect during the divorce process. Your lawyer may also give valuable advice to prevent you from making common mistakes, such as removing a large sum of money from a joint bank account or changing the locks on the home that you share with your spouse.
Understand Your Finances
Dealing with joint finances can be a very complicated part of a divorce. Prior to initiating the divorce, take the time to develop a clear picture of your financial situation. It is important to know exactly what assets you and your spouse share, as well as any debt that you are both responsible for. If possible, collect documentation such as bank account statements, deeds to property, statements from 401(k)s or other retirement accounts, and copies of credit card bills. Your attorney will need this information to help ensure that you get a fair settlement.
Establish Credit in Your Own Name
If you plan on getting a divorce, it is a good idea to stop using credit cards that you share with your spouse. Instead, focus on establishing credit in your own name. Having credit accounts in your own name can make it easier to start keeping finances separate, and may benefit you when it comes to renting or purchasing a new home or having utilities turned on.
Create a Post-Divorce Budget
A divorce often changes a person's financial situation, especially if both spouses worked and were used to living in a two-income household. One of the best things you can do prior to getting divorced is to create a realistic budget so you know how much money you will have available each month. This will help you determine the type of lifestyle you can afford, and ensure that you make choices that allow you to support yourself and your family.Share