Steps to Take in Preparation for a Divorce Filing

photo of two wedding rings a padlock and divorce papers

Have you tried to save your marriage time and time again only to feel angry, frustrated, and sad over the situation? If you are officially ready to end your marriage for good because nothing is getting better, and you cannot continue to live your life struggling through your relationship, you should start taking certain steps to get yourself prepared for the divorce filing process. There are quite a few steps that you will need to take to get through the divorce with the least amount of stress possible. The length of time it takes to have everything finalized varies tremendously based on a few different factors, including how cooperative you both are while providing details on your finances.

Get Your Own Bank Account

If you know that you are going to file for divorce, you should open a bank account in your own name that you do not need to share with your partner. The purpose of opening this separate account is to begin saving some of your money for attorney fees and for any additional expenses you may incur as a result of the divorce. If your partner is the one who makes more money in the relationship, saving some of your money now is a great way for you to get ahead when the time comes to live off of a single income. It helps to have that extra financial cushion, especially when you are used to having two incomes coming in and will no longer have as much financial stability as you once had while you were married.

Consult With a Divorce Attorney

After opening your own bank account and setting money aside, you should consult with a divorce attorney to ask plenty of questions about the process and to receive professional legal advice on the different steps that you are going to need to take. Be prepared to ask the attorney several important questions, such as:

  • How is custody of the children and pets determined?
  • Who will get what during the divorce?
  • Is mediation a necessity?
  • What should I do if my former partner becomes uncooperative during the divorce proceedings?
  • What should I do if I have some concerns about my safety after filing for divorce?
  • Is it a good idea to move out of the home or should I stay in the home while going through this process?
  • Is there a way for me to get alimony from my former spouse?

These are just a few of the essential questions you may need answered. Your divorce attorney can offer some of the most useful advice on the things you should do and should not do when you are going to complete the filing process and officially separate from your husband or wife.

Consulting with an experienced divorce attorney is something you should do to get the proper answers to any and all the questions you have about going through a divorce. It is to find an attorney to represent you with whom you feel completely comfortable. After all, you want to hire and work with someone who has your best interest at heart. You are going to want to find an attorney who is dedicated to helping you get the most out of the situation, such as custody of your children, spousal support, and your fair share of all marital property and assets.

Work on Gathering Important Documents

Because you know that you are done with the marriage, you should begin gathering important documents that you are going to need during the filing process. These documents would include tax returns that provide details on the amount of money you are earning each year and the amount of money your spouse is earning each year. If you are concerned that your former partner will notice that these documents are missing, make copies of them, bring them to the attorney, and then put the originals back in their filing cabinet to avoid any confrontation.

Aside from the tax returns, you should obtain any other important documents that could potentially help you with your case against your former partner. For example, if your former partner was abusive to you or the children at any point and you filed a police report, you should have a copy of the report that you can give to your divorce attorney. Make copies of everything that has to do with your financial situation and marital issues because these are the kinds of things that may be useful when the divorce proceedings are in full swing.

Lean on Your Support System

Know that it is not always easy to go through a divorce. When you got married, you probably never expected to find yourself in such a difficult position. There are times when you may feel overwhelmed with all the things you need to do to get through the process of officially ending your marriage. Because there are times when you may feel tired, overwhelmed, and frustrated, you should always reach out to your support system and lean on yor loved ones when you need them the most.

Your support system may consist of your closest family members, a few good friends, and your divorce attorney. These are people who will have your back and support you while you make a major decision that is going to eventually change your life for the better. You may feel a lot better knowing you have people to talk to about what you are going through and you have a professional and reliable divorce attorney to speak to when you have any specific concerns about your situation.

Complete the Petition to Divorce and File it

When you are ready to file for divorce against your former partner, you can go to the attorney’s office, complete the petition to divorce your spouse, and then file it with the local court. Once you have filed the petition with help from the attorney, your ex is notified of your intent to end the marriage. Your former spouse will quickly receive the divorce papers and will have around 30 days to respond to the documents that he or she receives. He or she will need to file that response to get the ball rolling. As soon as the response is filed, your attorney will work on providing the court with all the documents that are requested of you, such as details on your current income, the expenses you have, and any assets you might also have.

Taking the right steps in preparation of filing for divorce is important. When you are no longer happy in the marriage and you have tried unsuccessfully to get it to work out for quite some time, you may be ready to call it quits and move on. Instead of waiting until the last minute, you can get yourself prepared for this process by saving money in a bank account in advance, consulting with a divorce attorney to get more information, making copies of important documents, and relying on those closest to you for support and guidance when you need it. If you are ready to learn more about the divorce process and the different steps you will need to take to get through it, contact Bouloukos Oglesby & Mitchell at 205-395-5062 to schedule your free consultation.