How to Prepare to File for Divorce
Going through a divorce can be confusing, stressful, and challenging. It’s important to be prepared so you can improve your chances of a resolution that meets your expectations. Getting through the divorce process is no small feat.
Divorce is accompanied by the division of assets, mounds of paperwork, settling debts, and navigating a new future. Under the best of circumstances, the process is overwhelming and will initiate many changes in your life. Knowing what you can do upfront to make the process a little less stressful will ease your mind and help you prepare for future changes.
Most of the things you need to do to prepare will fall under one of three categories: emotional, financial, or legal. Some fall into more than one category, but it’s important to address all of them. Our experienced Atlanta divorce attorneys are equipped to support you through the entire process. If you’d like to speak to one of our compassionate attorneys regarding your circumstances, contact us today.
Preparing for the legal and financial issues that arise with a divorce can seem overwhelming, and it may be easy for you to overlook the emotional responsibility you have to yourself. This would be a mistake. Only by caring for your own emotional and mental health can you come out of the divorce process on the other side ready to face your future.
It doesn’t matter whether you were the one who initiated the divorce or it was your soon-to-be ex-spouse. In either case, dissolving a marriage causes emotional upheaval and grief that you must address.
Be sure you’re meeting your own emotional and physical needs to support your mental health. Consider using stress-reducing strategies such as yoga, exercise, meditation, or journaling. Many people also find it helpful to speak to a professional counselor who can help them walk through the grief process.
There are several steps you and your family law attorney will take to be prepared to file for a divorce. Your attorney will first take the time to understand the specifics of your case. We use this information to customize a negotiation plan for your divorce settlement or to properly build your case for court proceedings.
You’ll need to decide whether divorce-related issues can be resolved without court intervention. This includes spousal support, property and debt division, and child support and custody.
The court will need documentation of your marriage and any estate planning documents you’ve completed to finalize the divorce agreement. This includes your marriage license, life insurance policies, and any prenuptial or post-nuptial agreements.
Your attorney will ask you to compile important financial documents that identify your assets, debts, and retirement plans. This will include your tax returns for the last five to ten years and documentation of any safety deposit boxes. Your assets include your liquid cash, property, vehicles and recreational vehicles, jewelry, and any other assets with value, such as collections of weapons or artwork. Documentation can include your credit report, credit card statements, deeds, and titles to any vehicles you own. As you prepare these documents for the attorney, it’s a good time to take steps to separate your financial lives.
For example, you want to protect your credit rating. Talk to your family law attorney about the steps you can take within Georgia state law during the separation and after the divorce is finalized. Start exploring your health insurance options if you are dependent on your spouse for insurance.
Take the time to itemize the personal items that belong only to you, such as family heirlooms or gifts. If you were the caretaker and stayed home with the children, this is a good time to consider the skills you have that make you employable and decide what training you will need.
Begin your employment search immediately. Consider how childcare can impact your income. If your child is young and childcare is more expensive than the income you might make, you might consider asking for temporary spousal support and child support while the divorce is pending.
Let Kessler & Solomiany, LLC Strengthen Your Legal Preparation
Finally, it is crucial that you are legally prepared for a divorce, which strengthens the potential that the divorce settlement or court proceedings will resolve in a way that meets your expectations. The experienced Atlanta divorce attorneys of Kessler & Solomiany, LLC understand the challenges you are facing as you go through a divorce, and we can guide you through the difficult choices you must make.
Our skilled legal team can help you prepare for legal issues and will help protect your rights during divorce negotiations or court proceedings. Call our offices today at (404) 688-8810 for a confidential consultation with one of our compassionate and experienced legal team.