By preparing yourself for a divorce before it actually happens, it may reduce a certain level of stress and conflict that so many people face when they hurry through the divorce process. With some informed planning you can make good decisions and pave the way for your life after the divorce and also get advice about how to avoid aspects that you don’t want to negotiate.
Below are just a few things to think about as you begin preparing for a divorce.
Gather and Organise All of Your Paperwork
The better organised your paperwork, the less time you will have to spend hunting for information if your solicitor requires it at some point during the divorce process. This can save you a lot of effort and can reduce your stress levels, especially if you have work and children to juggle around sorting out divorce issues. Try to spend some time categorising and sorting out all of your paperwork (financial accounts, assets, vehicles, credit cards, taxes, employment information, regarding to household rent/mortgage, bills, utilities, wills, and so on) before you start your divorce.
Become Financially Aware
Situations are different in each household, but there will often be one partner who has taken more of a leading role in organising certain, if not all, finances. Or each individual has taken responsibility for separate aspects of the financial arrangements. It is really important that you become financially aware of your current situation. This follows on from the first point above, as you will need to gather all of your financial statements and information and have a good look to find out what is where. If there is a business involved you will want a copy of everything to do with that, to hand. This will allow you to understand better what you are entitled to or what has to be divided after the divorce.
Keep track of the costs associated with divorce proceedings. Getting financial advice may be necessary to find out what is best in your circumstances. Also ensure that all of your taxes and payments are up to date to prevent delays to your divorce.
Make a List
List all of your valuable items, from jewellery to furniture, vehicles, to white goods and so on. This can prove useful when the divorce so that nothing is omitted, but also if items go missing you have documentation on file.
Looking After Yourself
Not just yourself, but any dependants. It is important that you are able to financially support yourself. Now is probably not the time to make a dramatic change to your working life if you are already employed. If you are not currently employed, it may be worth speaking to careers advisers to see where your talents could best be put to use, or whether some training may be beneficial.
Looking after yourself also covers the emotional and physical care that you need to consider when preparing yourself for a divorce. It can be a very distressing and stressful time, so you need to ensure that you have good support circles around you, ways of de-stressing and burning off energy and keeping you feeling emotionally stable.
Sounds unimportant at first, but ensuring that your vehicle is roadworthy and up-to-date with MOT, taxes and servicing is important. You can easily forget these things, if you are busy organising other issues, and you don’t want the additional financial outlay of something preventable going wrong and leaving you stranded.
You may want to consider taking out some separate insurance for yourself and your children so that you know you are always covered for all eventualities.
Seek Legal Advice
An experienced and qualified family lawyer will be able to discuss your options according to your personal circumstances and can significantly reduce your stress levels by helping you prepare more specifically for your divorce. They will be able to help you understand the possible cost of your divorce so that you can be prepared. It will also help to know your solicitor in advance so that when you eventually decide to file for divorce you will be ready.