When someone decides to divorce or learns they are being divorced, it can be very overwhelming. The purpose of this guide is to give some quick direction to get a grasp on important issues before things spiral out of control.
Know your rights and obligations:
Learn about the divorce process by speaking with someone qualified to answer questions. Although speaking with loved ones and friends can be helpful, every situation is unique and you need to understand how your situation can be best handled under the laws of your jurisdiction.
Get a handle on assets and debts:
Many times, individuals going through divorce are not sure of the assets and debts. It is important to have as much information as possible when the divorce process starts. When possible, make copies of relevant information to assist in determine the assets and debts including, but not limited to, tax returns, bank statements, retirement/pension information, insurance documents, and mortgage statements. Having this information will better assist you in completing an analysis of the asset and debt division to help you prepare for your future after the divorce.
Set reasonable outcomes/goals:
After you assess your situation, reach out to knowledgeable people to set reasonable goals about the outcome of the divorce. You may have look to financial advisers, insurance agents, real estate professionals, and retirement specialists to ensure that the goals are being met. One key is to know what the likely outcome will be and then start a playbook to reach the goals you have set. Although remember, not every goal can be attained and it is important to prioritize.
Have a support group:
When someone is going through a divorce, you need a support group even if it friends and family. Divorce is a stressful time and you need to be able to express yourself. In some instances, friends and family are not enough and you may need to seek assistance from mental health professionals. Most attorneys maintain a database of referrals to address mental health issues, so consult with your attorney if you need a referral.
Conflict during a divorce is high enough without adding fuel to the fire with unnecessary disagreements. Do not put yourself in a situation where conflict can arise and try to be the bigger person. If something happens, attempt to remove yourself from the situation as quickly as possible.