A divorce can be a very emotional and stressful process for a couple, but if you and your spouse are ending your marriage, it is important to react appropriately if you want the dissolution to go smoothly. Many people make mistakes during a divorce, which can make everything much more difficult. If you're getting divorced, avoid the following common mistakes:
Not Hiring a Divorce Lawyer
No one is legally required to have a lawyer during a divorce, but it is in your best interest to retain a divorce lawyer to work on your behalf. A divorce can be complicated, and the terms of your divorce are much more likely to be fair if you have an experienced lawyer who understands how to split assets and divide debt equally.
Involving the Children
A divorce can get especially ugly when a couple shares children. For the health of the family, never involve the children in the divorce or the issues between you and your spouse. It is also best to avoid fighting and arguing with your spouse in front of your kids. If possible, consider seeing a family therapist to help your children with the divorce transition; a family therapist can also help you and your spouse learn how to co-parent civilly after the divorce is finalized.
Making Rash Financial Decisions
When a divorce is in process, do not make any rash financial decisions, such as emptying the funds in a joint bank account or maxing out a credit card that is in both your name and your spouse's name. The court system often looks down on actions like this, and you can possibly end up being responsible for paying back your spouse or having to pay off all of the debt you incurred.
Failing to Plan for the Future
As soon as divorce papers are filed, it is important to start making concrete plans for the future. While it can take several months for a divorce to be finalized in some cases, making a budget and choices about your living situation as soon as possible can be very beneficial. Most people experience a drastic change in finances right after a divorce, especially if the couple was living in a double-income household. It can take some time and effort to figure out exactly where you can afford to live and how you're going to pay your bills on your own after you are officially divorced.