If you are considering divorce the mere thought of all the changes that will happen once you divorce can cause such stress it may impact your decision to follow through with a divorce.
If you want to divorce with as little stress and negative impact on your life as possible there are steps you can take beforehand to make sure you are emotionally and financially balanced and able to move forward with your desire to divorce.
To help alleviate your fears and start feeling more in control, take the follow 6 steps before you file for a divorce.
1. Gather your financial records.
Having all your financial information together and organized will save you time and money. Do not keep your records in your home! Keep copies of them in a safe deposit box or another safe place that your spouse doesn’t have access to.
2. Open a post office box.
Opening your own post office box will ensure that your mail will sit securely in a locked box that only the key holder can access. This will allow you to receive confidential mail from your divorce attorney as well as your new credit card and bank statements without worry that it will fall into the wrong hands.
3. Start putting money away for legal and other professional fees.
Having access to the funds you need to follow through with a divorce keeps you from being dependent on your spouse or, worrying about where you will come up with the money from. To be sure you’ll have enough money to hire the professionals you’ll need during divorce, do your best to have as much money put aside in your own name before filing for a divorce.
4. Open a new checking and savings account in your name alone.
You should immediately set up a new checking and savings account in your name alone. Your divorce attorney may even instruct you to withdraw up to half of the funds from your joint accounts to put in your new accounts. Once you announce you want a divorce to your spouse, you want to have quick access to those funds.
5. Open new credit cards in your name only.
Having a credit card in your name will help you establish your own credit. Also, credit cards may help with day-to-day living expenses during the divorce when some of your other funds may be frozen or unavailable. Do this before any divorce proceedings start, especially if you are not working or if your income is substantially less than your husband’s.
6. Talk to a local divorce attorney.
You can learn all you need to know about your legal rights per your state’s divorce laws if you consult with a local divorce attorney. Wondering if you’ll be awarded spousal support, how marital property will be divided or what child custody will be like after a divorce? A local attorney will be able to shed light on these issues.
Preparation before filing for a divorce will keep you from going into the divorce process unprepared.