Ron Poliquin, DoverLawOffice.com,
This is Ron Poliquin’s Top Tips before getting a divorce.
- Get an attorney and get a plan before telling your spouse you’re going to get a divorce. Consult with an attorney prior to your divorce, before the chaos begins. The person you marry may be vastly different than the person you divorce.
- Get organized. Get your financial paperwork together, bank statements, tax forms, W-2’s, pay stubs, 401k, mortgage information, car payments, anything having to do with the marital finances. Okay, in every marriage there is usually somebody that is in charge of the finances and there’s somebody that’s not in charge of the finances. Now if you’re not in charge of the finances, make sure you have access and can get that information before you tell your spouse you’re getting a divorce. Because the chances of getting that information readily afterward are going to be slim. Especially if your spouse is angry at you.
- Don’t come to some kind of agreement without knowing your rights. It’s good to be civil. It’s good to compromise. It’s not good to make rash uninformed decisions in a hyper-emotional state. There are people that come to me all the time that say I just want to get this over with. Well, that might be fine now, but what about two years’ down the road when you don’t have your finances in order and when you’re not able to pay your bills? What happens then? So, first, know what you’re entitled to through the advice of an attorney, then work on a compromise that will work for both of you.
- There are no winners in a divorce. Okay, it usually doesn’t matter whose fault it is. It doesn’t matter who’s actions caused the divorce, who cheated on who or who is bad toward who. That’s not going to really make a difference in getting a divorce and going through proper division, get over it. It doesn’t matter whose fault it was or who you see if you think your husband or wife was the cause of the divorce.
- I’m your attorney, not a therapist. Get an emotional support group together. A network could be friends, could be a priest, could be a therapist. Divorce is a super stressful time in your life. It could be one of the most stressful time in your life. Do not underestimate how this divorce is going to impact your life. Attorneys are not equipped to handle that. So you are going to need to get that support system from another venue.
- If you’re in an abusive relationship, all bets are off. Get a protection order right away. Call the police, get a PFA. As an attorney, what I can do if you’re interested in making your spouse pay or dragging your spouse through hell, call another attorney. If you want someone who stands up for you, to help you resolve matters fairly so you can move on with your life, I can do that. But make sure you get an attorney, make sure you get counsel.