Divorce & Common Sense
Filing for divorce can be a risky proposition for people who are unrealistic or unprepared for the event. The effects of a bitter contested divorce battle can be financially devastating and quite long-lasting as well. The gamble can start looking even worse when you consider the facts and weigh the risks. Divorce can start to look less like a solution and more like a problem. For those who are unsure about how a divorce might actually turn out, maybe it is time to take a closer look at other options.
If you are unsure about getting a divorce maybe you shouldn’t do it at all and perhaps a bit of counseling might be appropriate instead. A little marriage therapy in form of professional counseling might be able to rekindle the spark in your relationship. Anything you do to save the marriage at this point will be less costly than going through a divorce. If you do decide to go through with a divorce you might want to consider an initial consultation with an attorney to help you plan your strategy. If you don’t have any children, are on speaking terms with your spouse and the divorce is a mutual agreement, you may not need the services of a divorce lawyer.
If you live in a community property state (Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin) the assets you acquired during the marriage will be divided equally. All of the remaining states in the U.S. are equitable property states, and assets in those states are divided according to what is equitable, not equal. This means the court will take each spouse’s financial situation and responsibilities into consideration when dividing the property and you may not get half of everything.
Life after a divorce also means you will have to pay for your living costs by yourself, unlike when you had a partner to help out with the bills. You might want to perform a bit of research to see if you will be able to afford to pay for rent, utilities, gas, food and insurance on your own. If you have with the option to stay in your existing home after the divorce, you might want to make sure you can afford to live there by yourself. If you own the home, you may want to consider buying out your spouse’s share of interest in the property if you can afford it.
Prior to any consultation with a divorce attorney or family planner, you should gather your financial documents and records in order to examine all your assets and debts including your mortgage, taxes, life insurance, stocks, retirement accounts and any other investments to truly evaluate your financial ability to take on extra bills. Don’t forget that the support of family, friends and community can go a long way to smoothing out a divorce too. If you’ve got a support system, you should not hesitate to use it.