03 Jul Acting on a Tough Decision: Initiating a Divorce
Divorce is not the most comfortable subject to bring up to your partner. For some, it could be one of the most difficult decisions you’ll ever have to make. It is easy for one to threaten divorce after an argument, but most of the time, they are just words. Initiating a divorce requires a conviction that it is the right thing to do.
The first thing you need to do is decide if a divorce is really what you want. Often, couples counseling might be the ticket you are looking for. While couples counseling is a unique experience, remember that the only person you can change is yourself.
A divorce process is one in which you are dividing everything (equitable distribution). Everything includes assets as well as debts. You might need to sell your house, vehicles, and various other sources of income that might allow you to reach that 50/50 balance.
Children are a whole other matter. Child care, custody and support all need to be taken into consideration. As for child custody, some states (including Florida) are shying away from using the word “custody” and instead assigning “time-sharing”. Children do best with two parents. Your child needs you and your partner. The hardest thing for you to do might be to put the wellbeing of your children before your own, particularly when it comes to getting along with the person you are divorcing.
Assess your financial situation. Getting a divorce means you are going to be on your own for a while. You may need to sell your house. Where are you going to live? Where are your children going to live? Are you currently making enough to support yourself and a child? The sad fact with child support is the money might not always be there when you need it.
Child care is another issue you might face. Unless you are somehow working from home, or your employer offers child care, chances are you might need to find a day care provider. Where are your kids going to go when you are at work? Child care can be expensive ~ often as much as renting an apartment. You do not want all of your money going to a child daycare – how can you get the help that you need?
Family Law Attorney
The next thing on this list is a good lawyer. As much as you might not like it, most divorces need lawyers. The truth is that a good lawyer can help put you in a better position to get what you need out of the divorce. They know local law, the court systems and possibly have a network of associates they can call on to get advice. Remember, lawyers are skilled debaters who can argue both sides of an argument. As you are speaking to your attorney, you can bet your partner is speaking with one, too.
Divorces are a Compromise
Most attorneys will tell you that if both parties are unsatisfied, the negotiations went well. You will not get everything you want. At the same time, your partner will not get everything they want. Finding the middle ground is possible, but it will not always be easy.