Divorce is not an easy situation to face. It is one of the most emotionally complex areas of the law—and it is also one of the most personal. It is easy for someone in the thick of it to forget a step or jump into it too quick without thinking about getting their ducks in a row. That is where divorce attorneys come in. We have been through the process before, and we know what to expect. When you work with our Charleston divorce law firm, you benefit from our years of legal experience and our education and legal insight into the process.
Below, we have explained the 5 things we recommend that you do before you actually file for divorce.
1) Get a Clear Idea of Your Financial Situation
Divorce will have a profound impact on your finances, and before you begin the process, it is a good idea for you to understand just where you stand. First, you need to have a clear understanding of what you own—such as your home, vehicles, and less tangible assets such as artwork or inheritances. Second, you need to know what you owe, including marital debts and personal debts. We recommend getting a copy of your credit report.
2) Put Together Proof of Your Income
When determining the financial aspects of a divorce, such as alimony and child support, it will be necessary to prove both you and your spouse’s income. This can be done with copies of recent pay stubs, income tax return, and more. If self-employed, this can be a little more difficult but can be accomplished by getting copies of your most recent bank account and financial business statements. Gather everything that you can.
3) Lay Out Your Budget
Splitting a household, whether single or double income, can mean major changes for your overall budget. You no longer will have the same needs or the same income, and it is a good idea to get a head start on how you are going to pay your bills and handle your finances once the dust has settled on your divorce. Understanding the future financial landscape also gives you an advantage when it comes to negotiating the terms of a divorce.
4) Begin Establishing Personal Credit
Often, divorce couples have spent years working together to build shared credit; however, it can become a major problem post-divorce for an individual who does not have any credit in their name individually. If you are facing a divorce, now is a good time to start building credit slowly. You can do this by getting a credit card in your name alone and using is wisely—slowly building a good credit score without racking up debt.
5) Speak with & Hire a Good Divorce Lawyer
Finally, we recommend that you hire a divorce attorney who you can trust. Take your time and find someone who is not only experienced, but who you feel comfortable with. As we mentioned above, divorce is a highly personal and intensely emotional process, and you want to make sure that you have someone in your corner who will be there for you through every step of the way. By hiring a Charleston divorce lawyer, you can breathe easier knowing that you have a professional to guide you through all of the steps and look out for your rights.
Are you ready to take the first step in your divorce? Contact our firm and request your initial consultation!