The decision to divorce can be made in the heat of the moment or after years of watching a marriage fail. Although it is not always possible, it can be better if you take some time to plan for divorce.
Many people start to think about divorce at the beginning of the year. Perhaps getting through the holidays was a struggle or you did not want to upset your family during this time. Maybe you are considering year-end financial issues.
Whatever the reason, making a new start in a new year is quite common. If you are thinking about filing for divorce, planning ahead can make a difference. Discussing it with a divorce lawyer can help you decide when to file and how to approach the subject with your family. An attorney may also point out aspects of the divorce process that had not occurred to you. Depending on your specific situation, you may learn that the time is not right — or you may realize that filing as soon as possible is beneficial.
In general, you can begin by considering the following issues:
- Your finances and the possibility of spousal support
- How you will determine custody of the children
- What effect a divorce will have on your children
- Who will pay child support
- The complexity of dividing your joint assets and debts
- Where you will live
- Whether restraining orders may be necessary
- The tax implications of divorce
- Your lifestyle after the divorce
These are serious matters, and it is natural to have questions and concerns. The only way to get the answers to how divorce will affect your life is to discuss your unique situation with an experienced attorney. Each case is different, so it is best not to assume that your divorce will work out exactly like another.