What is the First Thing to do When You Want a Divorce?

If you are considering a divorce, the first step is to talk to a divorce lawyer before you do anything else. It is important to gather legal knowledge about divorce to avoid making costly mistakes. 

With so many family law attorneys, hiring an experienced lawyer who understands divorce laws and legal procedures is imperative. Here is a quick guide to help you make informed decisions when considering a divorce. 

How Do I Prepare to Leave My Marriage?

Once you’ve decided to end your marriage, it is important to have a deliberate exit plan and follow legal procedures to protect you from potential legal issues, losses, and financial and emotional hardships. Here are the steps to take. 

Plan a Few Months Before You Leave

Preparation is crucial and the primary step when planning to end your marriage. This can set you up for success and put you into the right mental state. Consider important elements such as property division, financial arrangement, and your children’s well-being. Avoid making hasty or emotional decisions out of anger. 

Organize Your Documents 

Gather all vital documents such as bank statements, investment records, life insurance coverage, financial records, family trusts, and tax return and make copies. Put together as many documents as possible to be on the safe side. Keep the records safe because your attorney will need the documents in due course. 

Determine Where You Will Live 

It is important to know where you will live before leaving your marriage. It could be with a family member, friend, or in the apartment. How will you receive your mail? Will one spouse stay in the current house? How and when will you pack your belongings, and how do you plan to move to your new location? Carefully consider all these elements before you move out of your marriage. 

Contact a Divorce Lawyer

Now is the time to speak to a divorce attorney. There are many things involved in a divorce that can drain you if you do not seek legal advice. This can be even more challenging if children are involved, or you’re part of a blended family. You will need legal counsel on child custody, child support, and representation in court, among many other things. Hiring an experienced divorce attorney can give you peace of mind because the lawyer can handle the case and navigate the legal process.  

Inform Your Spouse and Children 

After speaking to your lawyer and seeking legal counsel, it’d be the best time to inform your spouse about your intention to end the marriage. This can be the most difficult moment, but it is equally important that you inform them earlier. Seat down with your spouse and discuss and allow an open discussion with them. 

Once you inform your spouse, you should also talk to your children. If possible, talk to the children with your spouse together. Let your children know it is not their fault, and they shouldn’t worry. Assure them that all is well, but you should also be ready to answer their questions carefully to reassure them of their safety and well-being. 

How Much Money Do You Need to Divorce?

Naturally, many factors determine how much money divorce can cost. The costs may vary widely depending on the circumstances of the divorce. According to the latest findings, the average cost of hiring a divorce lawyer in the United States is $12,900. The hourly cost is $270, while divorce that goes on trial costs $23,300 on average. 

Some divorce lawyers charge an hourly rate, whiles others charge on a retainer agreement, contingency basis, or flat rate. For this reason, it is imperative to speak to your divorce lawyer and seek guidance about their legal fees and payment terms. 

What Can You Not Do During A Divorce?

There are certain things you should avoid doing during a divorce. This is a critical time when you want everything to go on well. Anything contrary can affect the outcome of your case. Here are things to avoid doing. 

  • Don’t post on social media about your case. 
  • Don’t threaten your spouse.
  • Don’t send abusive messages or emails.
  • Don’t speak to your spouse’s attorney. 
  • Don’t get pregnant or impregnate anyone.
  • Don’t use your child/children as a tool for revenge. 
  • Don’t stalk or spy on your spouse. 

The list is endless. Consider seeking legal counsel from an experienced divorce attorney to guide you. You want to do everything possible to have a smooth divorce. This is why you should be careful with what you do at this critical time.