January is divorce season. Every year the number of divorces dramatically increases directly after Christmas. Some couples may fall out over the Christmas period, following drunken fumbles with work colleagues at the Christmas party, arguments with the mother-in-law, or added financial pressure and the expectations of the festive period not living up to the reality.
However, many couples know long before January that they will divorce, and they stay together through Christmas for their children, extended family and for the convenience of attending social occasions.
If you are in this situation, then the next couple of months is likely to be tough. However, if both you and your spouse know that the new year will bring around the divorce, then there are positive steps that you can take now in order to make the whole process easier.
Even if you have no desire to try and rekindle the relationship, you should work on your communication with your spouse. Being able to communicate openly, without every conversation ending in an argument will make the next couple of months and the divorce better for everyone. Clear communication is also key to avoiding the courts and therefore extensive legal fees.
Attend couple’s counselling and focus on being able to communicate clearly and listen to what the other person has to say.
Your divorce lawyer is going to need a lot of information in order to ensure you get your fair share of mutual wealth. Now is the time to start getting your affairs in order. Make copies of everything, from mortgage statements, to bank statements, to proof of shares and other wealth. If you or your other half have any collectors’ items or antiques, get them valued. Even items that are specifically “theirs” such as hobby equipment of jewellery can be included in the settlement and sometimes it is surprisingly valuable.
Have a clear out
If you have a lifetime of clutter, then start having a sort and a clear out now. Dividing a couple means dividing everything from teaspoons to antique oak tables. By getting rid of unnecessary items and going through everything, you will have a better idea of what there is to divide when your divorce come round.
Choose your divorce lawyer
Every divorce lawyer has a rush in January. There is no harm in researching and choosing your lawyer now. This will mean you also get to choose the best divorce lawyer in your area, before your spouse gets there first.