Disclosure – this is collaborative post.
Divorce is not something that one can prepare for. It invokes a combination of emotions in an individual – the most prominent one being stress. Due to such high levels of stress, people tend to neglect to take proper measures to file for divorce. The divorce process is ruthless, and you do not get enough time to adjust to the abrupt changes in your life. It does not matter whether you are filing for divorce or if your spouse is; the process is painful and tough for both parties. From facing a divided family to potentially losing your home and the custody of your children, the divorce process can have lasting effects on your life. That is why it is crucial to get it right, so there are no regrets.
While every divorce has distinctive characteristics, the process always turns out to be the same. But, with that said, there are several mistakes that are common occurrences in a divorce. So, here is some advice from an experienced Orange County family law firm that will help you avoid these top five mistakes to get a beneficial outcome.
1. Expecting Equitable Distribution
First and foremost, before getting a divorce, get the expectation out of your head that equitable distribution is always 50/50. Equitable distribution is any assets or debts that were sustained during the marriage. Such assets or debts that are considered marital are distributed one way or another through a divorce.
For instance, if you and your spouse collectively owned a car or a house, that is considered “marital.” Therefore, all these things, including debt, will be distributed during the divorce.
2. Having a Joint Bank Account
The second most common mistake people usually make before filing for divorce is not opening a separate bank account. However, if your marriage is dwindling and you understand that there is a possibility of a divorce in the future, it is time to open a separate bank account. It is crucial to do so as you can control your assets while entering the process of a divorce. This is particularly necessary for non-wage earners or a lesser-wage earner who might have to fight for consolation.
3. Not Documenting Assets
If you have a strong suspicion of divorce, it is in your best interest to document marital assets. This means taking photographs of everything you two own together. For instance, the marital home and any other kind of personal property. This includes any motor vehicles, jewelry collections, memorabilia, antiques, and so on.
When you document these items, you make sure that there is a proper memorialization of the assets and their location. As a result, an attorney can discuss and argue for the appropriate placement. Of course, the status of specific assets can be brought up and help your case, too.
4. Not Keeping Track of Financial Documents
It is possible that financial documents could be used as leverage during the divorce case. The legal term is “mandatory disclosure.” These documents are:
- Bank statements
- Retirement accounts
- Tax returns
Therefore, it is vital to gain access to these financial documents before filing for divorce. If you can get these documents, you can review them and discuss them with your attorney.
5. Not Retaining an Experienced Attorney
The biggest divorce mistake people make is not retaining an experienced divorce attorney. When an experienced attorney represents you, it can make a huge difference. You can avoid all kinds of mistakes while keeping your best interests in mind.
Disclosure – this is a collaborative post.