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5 Steps To Take Prior to Divorce

Family Law Attorney

Despite your best efforts to preserve the relationship, your marriage has fallen apart and divorce is now imminent. Like all major life changes, divorce can be an overwhelming prospect. By taking a systematic, step-by-step approach, you can help to make the process more manageable and less stressful.

The following are some of the most important steps to take before your divorce.

1. Decide Where To Live

Obviously, if you are experiencing domestic abuse, your priority is maintaining your own safety. That may mean leaving the home. However, if you are not in an abusive situation, the decision of whether to move out or stay becomes much more tricky.

If you leave, it may be more difficult for you to reclaim property in the future, meaning that it might be in your interest to stay. On the other hand, the laws of your state may require you to live separately from your spouse before you can file for divorce. It is a good idea to consult an attorney before making this decision.

2. Put a Hold on New Relationships

You want to avoid the appearance of inappropriate behavior. Even if your relationship with your spouse is over, the court may not look favorably on you if you start up a new relationship before your divorce is final. Not only that, but your heart may need time to heal before you get involved with someone else.

3. Build a Support System

Divorce is a difficult time, and you will need the support of family and friends. It is particularly important to find out whom you can trust to stand by you because the friends that you have as a couple may choose sides during a divorce. It can also be helpful to speak to a mental health professional.

4. Prioritize Your Children

If you have children, the divorce will be traumatic for them. Don’t make it harder on them than it needs to be. Do not badmouth your spouse around your children, do not argue in front of them, and keep their routine as normal as possible. Take an active role in their lives and ask them specific questions about their thoughts and feelings.

5. Update Your Estate Plan

If you made an estate plan when you were married, you may have named your spouse as a beneficiary, power of attorney, etc. You want to update your estate plan as soon as possible to reflect the current situation. This is important as you never know what could happen to you, or when.

One of our attorneys may be able to help you sort out the more complicated aspects of divorce. Contact an attorney, like a family law attorney in Lake Forest, IL, to schedule an appointment.

Thank you to Hurst, Robin & Kay, LLC. for their insight into family law and divorce.

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