The decision to file for divorce can be emotional and freeing at the same time. You might feel anxious, uncertain, scared, and yet, also relieved and optimistic for the future. If you are contemplating divorcing your spouse, it is time to begin preparing for your future.
The Virginia divorce attorneys at Taylor, Taylor & Taylor, Inc. understand how challenging the divorce process can be. Our goal is to streamline the process for our clients, defend their rights, and advocate for their interests.
If you are ready to begin planning for your divorce case, contact us today to discuss your situation and review your legal options.
Why It Is Important to Plan for a Divorce
A pre-divorce plan involves discussing and creating a plan for child custody, child support, spousal support, legal fees, court costs, living arrangements, living expenses, and more.
Some people believe that pre-divorce planning is an act of revenge or retaliation against your spouse, but this is not the case. Strategic planning helps to avoid potential disputes during legal proceedings. The main goal of pre-divorce planning is to protect your finances, property rights, and parental rights. By planning for your separation, you can safeguard yourself and your kids from a precarious financial situation in the future.
Common Issues that Arise in Divorce Proceedings
Sometimes, if a couple cannot agree on specific issues, a divorce may become contested. Disputes can draw out divorce proceedings and ultimately cost you more money. Some of the most common matters that arise during divorce proceedings include:
Child custody – Parents may disagree on who should have custody of the children. If one parent has primary custody, the other parent could also dispute the suggested visitation schedule.
Child support – The payor (the spouse paying child support) may feel that the requested amount of monthly child support is unfair. Conversely, the payee (the spouse receiving child support) may think that the amount of child support suggested by the payor is insufficient to provide for the children properly.
Spousal Support – Just like child support, alimony can cause heated disputes. The payor may think the amount their soon-to-be former spouse is asking for is unreasonable. And the payee may believe that the amount the payor wants to pay is inadequate.
Property division – When a couple is trying to divide marital property, disputes can occur. For example, two spouses might argue about who should keep the house or who gets the family car. If a couple has real estate or land, they may disagree about dividing it. Other types of marital property, including furniture, jewelry, boats, artwork, other valuables, bank accounts, retirement benefits, and investments, are often challenging to disperse in a way that both spouses agree with. Debt can also be a contentious subject, as the spouses may disagree about which of them should take on any debt they accrued while married.
If you plan to divorce your spouse, consider following this pre-divorce checklist.
Consult with a lawyer – Hiring an experienced divorce lawyer is critical before taking legal action. The divorce process can be confusing, and you need someone with legal knowledge in your corner. If your spouse retains an attorney and you try to go it alone, you could end up walking away with less than you deserve.
Get a P.O. box – There are numerous reasons to get a post office box. If you are not yet ready to ask your spouse for a divorce, you can use the P.O. box to receive correspondence related to your divorce. Even if you have discussed divorce with your spouse, having a P.O. box will ensure that your correspondence is kept confidential.
Open a new bank account – You should open a new bank account and place about half of the funds from your joint account into the new account. You need to be able to support yourself once you have filed for divorce and moved out, so it is essential to have your own checking, savings, and credit card accounts separate from your spouse’s.
Modify legal documents – If you have an estate plan that names your spouse as an executor or medical power of attorney, then you should modify those documents and designate a new executor for your estate. If you have left property and assets to your spouse in a will, you should also modify those documents.
Speak with your partner – It can be incredibly challenging to approach your partner and ask for a divorce. But not all divorces are messy. If you and your spouse approach the divorce amicably, the process will go much faster and less stressful for everyone involved.
Following this checklist can help you successfully navigate through this challenging period in your life.
How an Experienced Divorce Lawyer Could Help
The divorce process can be complicated and emotional, which is why having an attorney in your corner can be so valuable. A seasoned divorced attorney will be intimately familiar with all state laws that apply to your situation and will be able to offer you sound legal counsel throughout the process.
Your attorney will also be your advocate, safeguarding your property and parental rights and fighting for your interests. No one should have to go through a divorce on their own and knowing that you can turn to your lawyer for moral and emotional support throughout legal proceedings will give you peace of mind.
Why Choose Us?
The experienced Virginia divorce attorneys at Taylor, Taylor & Taylor, Inc. have the knowledge and resources to guide you through the divorce process and help you achieve your desired outcome. Contact us today for a consultation.