Now that you have told your spouse you want a divorce, there are some things you should and should not do. There are laws you must follow to avoid getting into troubling situations down the line as the divorce progresses.  There are also some positive steps you should be aware of and to follow these steps accordingly.

What to Do After You Have Told Your Spouse You Want a Divorce

Get counseling. Before choosing a lawyer, you might want to speak with a counselor to be sure filing for divorce is the right thing for you. Ideally, it would be better if you didn’t go alone, but if your spouse refuses, seek out counseling for yourself.  Making an important decision such as separating from your spouse is a decision that shouldn’t be made in anger.  You want to be clear-headed and know in your heart what’s best for you before embarking on a major change in life.  Therapy can help with that decision.

Choose a lawyer. The next thing you should do is choose a lawyer you can trust and with whom you have an affinity. You need an attorney who has experience in family law and can explain to you the different processes available for divorce: traditional litigation, mediation, or a collaborative divorce and which course is the best for your situation.

Keep communication open. As difficult as it may seem, keep communication open.  When you’re going through a divorce, it’s easier to shut down and not talk to each other.   After taking some time to let emotions calm down, resume communication with your ex and be as transparent as possible about your needs.  The more you’re able to communicate with one another, the more opportunities you’ll have to resolve some of the issues you have in your divorce which will save you time and money in the long run.

Take Stock of your Assets and Liabilities.  Make a list of your assets and liabilities.  It’s a good idea to have a broad picture of what you have and what your liabilities are, e.g. real estate, financial accounts, retirement accounts, stocks, life insurance policies, mortgages, credit card debts and others.  Any professional you consult will ask for a list of your assets and liabilities and it’s a good idea to have a list handy.

What Not to Do After Telling Your Spouse You Want a Divorce

Some spouses rush to the bank to take all the money out of the account. This is a big NO. It is very important not to do this. All assets, including money in the bank, are presumed to be community property and belong to both of you. You may later claim that an asset is your separate property, but you will need to prove that and get court approval.

Kim Mediation and Law Center Will Answer All Your Questions

Our attorneys at Kim Mediation and Law Center want to understand your unique situation. We spend the time with you that you need to answer your questions and to be sure you feel comfortable with the approach we think is best for you and your divorce case. Contact us to schedule a consultation.

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