Being trapped in a marriage that you know is ending can be difficult. So when you decide to get a divorce, it’s understandable that you would want to make the process as quick as possible. Don’t let your haste allow you to overlook important details – it is crucial to make sure that you are avoiding mistakes that could have lifelong consequences.
While you may be hoping for a quick divorce, you need to make sure you take the time to stop and think things through and get things in line before filing. Taking the extra time to get everything in order before starting the divorce process will help you save time in the long run and help you avoid costly mistakes.
Here’s the good news, you don’t have to make the same mistakes other people have made. Let’s take a look at the top five mistakes you should avoid during your divorce, so you can be better prepared to move forward with your life.
Mistake #1. Selecting the Wrong Divorce Process
Divorces are different today than they were in the past, and often don’t even go to trial, despite their characteristic portrayal on television and media. Today you have robust options such as mediation, collaboration, or negotiation. You will find that if you and your spouse are able to agree on the terms of your divorce without the court’s intervention, your divorce will likely be faster and less expensive than it would be if the courts were involved. Before you start the divorce process, it’s important to know what your options are and then choose the process that works best for your situation.
Mistake #2. Not Having the Necessary Financial Information
When discussing division of property, it’s important to have all of the necessary financial information on hand. Not only do you need to know how much money you and your spouse have, but you also need to know how much you will need to support yourself after the divorce, so make sure to take a good look at your finances.
You should have a list of all marital debts that will need to be divided, as well as a detailed inventory of your assets. The inventory list should include details such as the year the asset was acquired, a description, how much you paid for it, and its current value. Make sure to include all retirement accounts, pension plans, and life insurance policies as well.
If this seems like a bit of a chore, it is. Complicated financial and asset calculations are often best left to the professionals. An experienced legal professional can help you determine your assets, debts, and finances, as well as draft up terms that give you the best opportunity for an amicable settlement.
Mistake #3. Getting Your Children Involved
While this time may be difficult for you, keep in mind that it’s even harder on your children. It’s important to make sure that they are kept out of your divorce as much as possible. Providing them with too many details can stress them out or show them aspects of adult life that are best kept between you, your spouse, and your lawyer. You also need to make sure you are not bad-mouthing their other parent, or trying to get your child to side with you. Doing this could ruin your relationship with them and be considered negatively if your case does go to trial.
Mistake #4. Failing to Look Into the Tax Implications of Your Divorce Settlement
Remember that everything you gain from a divorce, whether it is dividing investments, selling property, or paying or receiving alimony and child support, has tax implications. If you settle without understanding that you will be taxed on these items later, you may end up receiving far less than you thought you would.
Mistake #5. Signing Documents Without Reading or Understanding Them First
You know you should always read a document before you sign it, especially when signing your divorce papers. Read them and then reread them. Even more than once if needed. If there is something in there that you don’t understand, it is vital that you consult with a legal professional who can break down the implications of each of the terms in the document. If you don’t understand the documents that you’re signing, don’t sign them.
Let Valley Divorce Services Help With All of Your Legal Document Needs!
Slowing down and trying your best to keep your emotions out of the process are the keys to avoid making costly mistakes during your divorce. It’s also imperative to make sure all of the paperwork for your divorce is prepared and filed properly and in a timely manner.
You have enough to worry about right now. Let the legal document assistants (LDAs) at Valley Divorce Services take the worry of preparing and filing court documents off of your plate. The expert LDAs at Valley Divorce Services have over 20 years of experience assisting self-representing litigants with the preparation and filing of court documents in an accurate and timely manner.
While we cannot provide you with legal advice, we do provide free consultations, and we can prepare, file, and serve all of the paperwork on your behalf. We know that every case is different, so we customize our services to each client to meet all of their needs and goals. Request a free legal consultation today and let us help you through this.