Divorce is a complex and traumatic experience for all involved, particularly when two people have a long history. You've gone through a period of intense emotions, both positive and negative. You may have had happy moments filled with love and laughter over the years and more painful episodes like arguments, disagreements, and hurtful words. Unfortunately, no matter how hard you try to make it work, some relationships don't last forever.
When the realization that your marriage has run its course becomes increasingly apparent, it's natural to feel overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. The divorce process can be lengthy and daunting. Still, with the proper guidance and support from an experienced lawyer, it doesn't have to be a drawn-out ordeal or overly complicated. Here are eight tips your lawyer wants you to know about navigating divorce:
1. Find a Skilled Attorney
Your attorney should be knowledgeable about the law and confident in their ability to provide legal representation. Understanding the emotional aspects of divorce is also essential to provide support and comfort throughout the process. If children are involved, guidance from your lawyer on what is best for them should always be the top priority. Ultimately, it's important to find an attorney who will fight for all you're entitled to under the law and have your best interests at heart.
When considering potential attorneys, feel free to ask questions regarding experience with similar cases or how they would handle certain issues related to your situation. Some important questions include: How long have you been practicing family law? What percentage of your cases are family law cases? What processes do you use when dealing with complex financial matters? How do you handle child custody or support disputes? Having clear expectations and an understanding of who will be working on your case ensures that all tasks related to the divorce proceedings are handled with care.
2. Gather Your Financial Information
Gather as much information about your finances as possible: Knowing what assets are available for division in the event of divorce is essential for getting through the process smoothly. Assets such as personal property, real estate, investments like stocks, bonds, mutual funds, retirement accounts, pensions, and businesses must be identified and valued. All liabilities must also be considered, such as credit card debt, loan payments, mortgages, or other outstanding debts. Identifying and valuing these items can often be complex. Without looking at the complete financial picture of each spouse involved in the divorce process, it will be impossible for the court to make an equitable division of those assets.
It's vital that during this process, both parties are honest with each other about their possessions since courts use full disclosure as a guideline when determining asset division during divorce proceedings. That means that if one party attempts to hide or undervalue any assets, they may risk not getting their fair share in the settlement or repercussions for hiding assets or debts.
3. Calculate Your Ongoing Expenses
It is essential to work out your expenses when going through a divorce, calculating what you need to be financially stable after the process is complete. When working out your expenses, it's important not only to consider your personal needs but also those of your family. This means looking into housing, utility bills, car payments, healthcare costs, insurance premiums, credit card payments, tuition fees, etc., that may arise due to post-divorce arrangements or moving into a new home. Once all of these expenses are taken into account, you can properly assess how much money you'll need on a month-to-month basis to ensure you can provide for yourself and any dependents.
Moreover, if some savings or investments were acquired during the marriage, they must also be factored into the equation. Taking account of all these factors can go a long way in ensuring that you have enough money to live comfortably after the divorce has been finalized.
4. Keep Realistic Expectations
When seeking legal representation, it's essential to have realistic expectations. No attorney can guarantee an ideal outcome in every case. Instead, they should provide legal advice that is grounded in a thorough knowledge of Oklahoma law. An experienced attorney can advise you on the most likely outcomes while also helping you understand what areas you may be able to compromise on if necessary.
It's essential to remember that an attorney should never make any promises as to what the outcome of a case may be. Rather, they should provide honest and accurate assessments of your situation based on their understanding of the law. This means having an open dialogue with your lawyer about the facts of your case and discussing any goals you may have for the outcome of the process. Your attorney can then use this information to craft creative solutions that prioritize your goals while still keeping them realistically achievable under existing legal precedents and statutes.
5. Practice Self-Care
Divorce can be an incredibly painful, emotional experience, no matter who initiates it. For many, the physical and emotional toll that divorce takes can feel unbearable. It's important to take the necessary time to process the emotions that arise from such a life change and invest in activities that will help you cope. Self-care is essential during this period of transition and adjustment.Aria Taylor
Finding a reliable support system is vital for navigating through this difficult period. A counselor or therapist can serve as a sounding board, helping to evaluate triggers and provide insight into how best to move forward in a healthy way. Additionally, taking time for yourself is key in self-care - this could come in the form of lavish spa days or simply dedicating moments each day to something meaningful to you. Finally, participating in activities that fill your spirit with joy is particularly important - whether it's fitness classes, creative hobbies, travel experiences, or anything else - engaging in things you love will bring rejuvenation and remind you of your own worthiness.
6. Be Mindful of What You Say or Post
Many people find themselves saying or doing things they later regret during a divorce. Unfortunately, some of these actions can have long-lasting legal implications regarding things like child custody, visitation rights, and spousal support. Therefore, it is important to always think before you act when making decisions related to your divorce – even those involving communication with your former partner.
Texts, emails, and any other electronic communications are all open to the scrutiny of the court system; in fact, they may even be used as evidence during hearings or trials related to your divorce. Every message you send should be composed under the assumption that it will eventually be read aloud in a courtroom. As such, it is important to exercise caution when communicating with your ex about matters related to the divorce. Similarly, it is important to consider how others might interpret your words before you post anything on social media platforms that could affect the outcome of the case. It is best not to badmouth your former partner or discuss any aspects of the case online; instead, try talking through any issues you have with a trusted confidant or qualified therapist.
Furthermore, if anything comes up that feels too complicated or contentious for you to handle on your own – whether in regard to communication or an issue stemming from your divorce proceedings – it is best not to take any immediate action yourself but instead consult a lawyer or counselor first who can provide sound professional advice on how best proceed. By being proactive and taking this extra precautionary step before acting rashly, you will ensure that nothing said or done inadvertently hampers your chances of success in court over matters such as custody arrangements, spousal support, etc.
7. Have Patience
Divorces are complex and emotionally draining, regardless of the circumstances or parties involved. It's important to have patience as it can take a considerable amount of time for everything to be finalized; in fact, depending on the situation, this could be anywhere from many months to even a year or longer. If a case is settled in court, extensive paperwork and filing must be done, which adds to the length of time needed for the process. Similarly, if divorce proceedings happen outside of court via mediation sessions, negotiations must be made between both parties, which can also add additional weeks or months until an agreement is reached.
Any divorcing couple must understand that divorce proceedings take time and that they should not expect miracles overnight. Of course, much of this depends on how amicable both parties are with each other and whether they're willing to work together toward a successful resolution. If the couple has already agreed on certain issues such as property division, alimony, etc., then the process may go more smoothly and quicker than if there is any disagreement between them. However, even with all these factors taken into consideration, it's important for divorcing couples to understand that it will likely take many months (or longer) for their divorce to be finalized via traditional litigation methods.
8. Prioritize the Best Interests of Your Children
It is important for divorcing couples with children to make sure that they prioritize what is best for their kids and put them first throughout their divorce. This could include setting realistic expectations that take into account the age and emotional maturity of your child, maintaining communication between both parties, avoiding using your child as a messenger between you and your ex-spouse, not forcing them to choose sides, being honest about what has happened but using language appropriate for their age, trying to maintain some normalcy, acknowledging and validating any feelings expressed by your child, and perhaps most importantly - avoiding making negative comments about each other in front of them. Taking all these precautions can go a long way toward helping children cope with their parents' divorce in a positive manner.
Contact Tiffany Graves Law
At Tiffany Graves Law, we strive to make the legal aspects of your divorce as straightforward as possible so that you can focus on moving forward with your life. We strongly believe in providing a compassionate approach to every case, as well as offering free consultations so that we can get a better understanding of your unique situation before developing a customized strategy for you. In addition, our team makes sure that we stay up-to-date on the latest changes in family law so that each client receives accurate advice and representation throughout their proceedings.
If you are considering starting divorce proceedings or need help navigating a current issue related to family law, please do not hesitate to contact our team at (918) 528-5156 for a free consultation today. Let us put our experience and commitment to excellence towards helping you achieve the best possible outcome for your case!