Divorce is a very apprehensive time.
Financial concerns, both current and future, are at the forefront of everybody’s mind.
• How am I going to pay my bills for the next couple of months?
This is a common concern because most people have not been through a divorce and have no experience with the process. The process of making two homes out of one can create stresses on a family’s existing marital income. In addition to using the parties’ income to cover the ongoing expenses, other assets can be used to fill in short-term shortfalls. After exploring the needs of the parties and their children (if there are children), available income and property can be allocated between the parties so that their needs and the children’s needs can be covered. The strategic allocation of certain property by one or both of the parties can lessen or alleviate the need for short-term and/or future expenses. For example, if one party has a long commute, it makes more sense for that party to use the car that offers the best gas mileage than the party who only drives a short distance to work each day.
• How will my property be divided and what will I walk away with?
Everybody worries about the outcome of their divorce. Understanding the extent and the value of the property to be divided helps the individuals involved in a divorce understand and, in most cases, have more control in reaching an acceptable outcome in their divorce. Creating inventories of one’s marital estate is an essential tool for dividing property. Sometimes this is the first time that both parties truly have an understanding of what they own. Determining the real value of property make the difference in a party’s short-term and long-terms goals being achieved. Value is not just what something will sell for.
• How am I going to pay for the process of getting divorced?
This question can be broken down into two parts: payment of the expenses in the process and controlling the expenses of the process. Payment can be paid out of the assets of the marriage or by using short-term debt, such as a credit card or by borrowing from family. Control of the expenses can be more important than how they are paid. Understanding your options while taking into account what each option may cost, will help you manage the cost of your divorce.
Personal security is always a major concern in a divorce.
• Am I going to live in my house during and/or after my divorce?
One’s house is equivalent to one’s home for a lot of people. This makes the “house” a very complicated issue. Often it is the biggest asset as well as the biggest debt in a person’s life. Special care needs to be taken when considering the house and what it going to happen to it.
• Will I feel safe in my new home if I move?
When it is necessary to move from the existing home during a divorce, steps need to be taken to make it a safe place. What it takes to make a safe place is very personal: sometimes there needs to be court orders or sometimes it may be surrounding yourself with personal items. Making an environment that you can live in comfortably is important to getting you though the divorce process.
• How will this Divorce affect me emotionally?
For people that have never gone through a divorce, a divorce is an uncharted area that they know by definition is go to be a hard emotional trip. For people that have had a divorce, they know that it was no fun and on at least one occasion their emotions got the best of them. Divorce is emotional. To deny it is to put yourself at peril. Handling the emotion of a Divorce is personal and different individuals have different tools for this task.
Divorce with children create more questions and compound all the concerns above.
• How will my children handle this divorce?
We love our children. We care about how they are affected by any event that enters their lives. Divorce is a big event. How your divorce is pursued by you and your attorney will directly affect your children’s outcome with the divorce and subsequent new life that follows.
• Will I have as close a relationship with my children during and after the Divorce?
The thought that our relationship is going to be hurt by a divorce can keep us from even getting a divorce in some cases. Your children and the relationship that you have with them will take some attention during this process. Knowing how best to attend to the relationship that you have with your children during a divorce takes experience that most people do not have. And it is demanded of you at a time when you may not have a lot of energy to devote to this issue.
• How will this divorce affect my children’s education?
We want the best for our kids. We have plans for them that may seem at risk when confronting a divorce. Many couples had distinct goals for their children, including certain schools or careers. If the child’s grades are adversely affected by the divorce, all of the plans for the child may be at risk. Cost of school may have been planned for, but in few cases is it fully funded. The future planning for these costs will most likely determine if the education plans will be able to be followed.
As with most things in life, having knowledge helps a person make better decisions and lowers the stress of any situation. In a divorce proceeding knowing what to expect and being able to make educated decisions is critical.
For most people, the divorce and accompanying Suit Affecting Parent-Child Relationship (SAPCR) will be one of the biggest and most important “business deals” that they may ever do, the ramifications of which will affect your future for a very long time. Having access to experienced advice, along with help getting you the relevant information to have an effective strategy for the temporary orders and final orders in these matters, is paramount.
David Bouschor has been helping clients with their divorce and other family law problems for over 25 years. He has helped clients with decisions ranging from how to get a divorce, what strategies work best in their case, as well as competent and diligent representation in Temporary Orders Hearings and final trials in front of a judge or a jury.