Preparation Can Facilitate a More Efficient Divorce
Divorce is an intensely personal process that is often fraught with many challenges and difficulties. Many relationship experts suggest that divorce is the second most stressful event a person is likely to experience—only the death of a spouse is usually considered to be more stressful. Ending a marriage, however, does not always need to be turbulent and filled with acrimony. There are some practical things that you can do in advance that can make your divorce a little easier.
Know What You Have
It is not unusual for people to take their assets and property for granted. For example, you may realize that you and your spouse own your home and your vehicles, but you may also have investments that you have not thought about in years. Alternatively, many people do not realize the full value of things they own. Your collection of baseball cards or porcelain dolls may be important to you for sentimental reasons, but they may also be worth a substantial amount of money if you were to sell them.
As you prepare for the divorce process, you should compile a comprehensive list of the property that you and your spouse own. For major purchases, it may be helpful to write down when it was bought and how much you paid. Obviously, if your spouse has property that you do not know about, you will not be able to include it in your inventory, but your list will be a good starting point for the division of marital assets.
Know What You Want
You will probably not get everything you wish out of your divorce, but once you know what you have, you can begin prioritizing the list of what you would like to keep. Knowing what you want applies to more than just property. If you are a parent, you should also give serious thought to what an ideal post-divorce parenting situation would look like to you.
It may be tempting to simply “go with the flow” and the “let the chips fall where they may,” but doing so could leave you at a dramatic disadvantage during the divorce proceedings. By developing a specific idea of what you want, you will have decidedly more control over your own future and that of your family.
Know Where You Can Compromise
The other main advantage of knowing what you want is that you will also have a better idea of which areas are not as important to you. For example, keeping the marital home may be a high priority to you while fighting for the lion’s share of your joint savings account may not be quite so important—especially if you have a decent, reliable income. By compromising or giving a little on the savings account, you may be able to negotiate a settlement in which you get to keep your home free and clear.
Of course, you may still encounter topics on which neither you nor your spouse is particularly willing to compromise. If you know about these ahead of time, however, you will likely be in a better position to have more productive discussions about them.
Know How to Find Help
Unfortunately, there is no way to guarantee that your divorce will be completely free of contentiousness and challenges, but proper preparation can be the key to a smoother divorce. Contact an experienced Kane County family law attorney to begin planning today. We will work with you every step of the way and provide the quality representation you deserve.