Divorce: What You Should Do During The Process

When a couple gets married, they think it will last a lifetime. However, life takes unexpected twists and turns that can leave you devastated. Although it is common for partners throughout the United States to get divorced, the case depends on the situation of the spouses. Few of the many things that you will need to do to get through this challenging process are mentioned below.

Talk To Your Kids

After deciding to get a divorce, the first thing that you should do is tell your children. Sit them down in a comfortable environment and tell them that you and your partner have come to a mutual decision to get separated. Explain to them, in a way they might like, what getting a divorce means. Tell them all the positive things that will come out it, like more gifts and two birthdays parties. Talking to them is very important because when parents of young children split apart, the kids are often scarred for life. The last thing you want is for your kids to suffer, but you do need to consider all the factors involved in the divorce. For example, you may opt for changing their last name legally, and you need to ensure that if you go through with this, the process is as stress-free as possible. If you’re facing time constraints, it’s a good idea to check how long it takes to change their names so that everything runs smoothly.

File For Petition

Whether your partner agrees or not, you will have to file a petition to terminate the marriage. Either you or your spouse will have to meet the state’s residency requirements, and give a legal cause, along with other required information. Although the rules vary from state-to-state, the cases are generally filed as either fault or no-fault. Many couples come to a mutual agreement and decide to file a ‘no-fault’ because they neither want to blame themselves nor their partners for the separation. A ‘fault’ case is where someone accuses their spouse; adultery is usually the accusation.

Get Temporary Orders

There usually is a long waiting period for the divorce trial to begin, but the court understands that not everyone can wait. If you are financially dependent on your spouse or having trouble with the custody of your kids, then temporary orders will be given by a judge to make things easier. However, the court will ask information from you and your companion before it makes any decisions if a request is put in for one. You can ask for the status quo or restraining orders as well. Status quo will require the spouse that has a higher income to pay all marital debts. While the restraining order will mean that neither you nor your partner can sell, give away, or dispose of any property before the hearing.

Figure Out Child Custody

This will be one of the most challenging decisions of your life. You will have to decide with whom the children will stay. If you have more than one kid, then you have to decide whether to take them all, separate them, or give your partner their custody. There are two types of child custody cases, legal and physical. The legal custodian of a child is someone with whom they live and who makes all the significant decisions of their life. Physical custody goes to the parent who will just be visiting or gets to keep them for a day or weekend. Fighting for the custody of the children can be very difficult, that is why you need to hire an experienced attorney.

Who Gets Alimony? And How Much?

The alimony is generally paid for by the husband to his soon-to-be ex-wife. However, many people follow their religious laws on marriage. If you and your spouse can settle on the maintenance, then the court will rule in its favor. If the matter is contested, then the court will take the case into its own hands and decide the issue based on the merits. The judge will look at the husband’s income, status, and lifestyle. The wife’s demands and, if she gets custody of any kid, the upbringing of the children will also be taken into account. Finally, the court will look at whether or not the wife earns any money. If both the spouses make a good living, then it is even possible that neither of them gets any cash.

Split Assets

Try to agree on how to divide the assets with your spouse if you are on good terms. Otherwise, the court will give dates for conferences between you, your partner, and the representing attorneys. In case you have different ideas, the court will decide by itself. The judge can choose to go either one of two ways, community property or equitable distribution scheme, depending on the state laws. The community property scheme is where you and your partner will jointly own all the property, or it will be under the name of either one. The judge can also consider more assets as ‘marital property’ under the equitable distribution scheme, where the assets are not split in 50-50.